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Mr. Gregory Campbell: To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland when the rural planning announcement made on 16 March 2006 was first discussed internally within the Department for Regional Development. 
Mr. Woodward: The preparation of Draft Planning Policy Statement 14"Sustainable Development in the Countryside" commenced with publication of an Issues Paper in June 2004. The option of a more restrictive policy for development in the countryside has been considered since then. The final decision for a more restrictive policy was made in early December 2005.
Mr. Hanson: At present, Northern Ireland court proceedings and sentencing data sources do not include victim information in relation to the commission of an offence. Therefore, it is only possible to provide the number of convictions for those offences which, by their definition, identify a child as the victim, for example, indecent assault on child or gross indecency with child. Table 1 provides the number of such convictions broken down by offence.
|Offence||Number of convictions|
|Gross indecency with child||6|
|Buggery with boy under 16 years||1|
|Unlawful carnal knowledge of a girl under 14||1|
|Unlawful carnal knowledge of girl under 17||5|
|Indecent assault on female child||3|
Mr. Gregory Campbell: To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland whether the Republic of Ireland authorities have sought assistance from the police in Northern Ireland regarding the whereabouts of persons resident in Northern Ireland in relation to the disturbances in Dublin on 25 February. 
Mr. Weir: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions how many staff were employed by non-departmental public bodies and agencies for which he has responsibility in 200405 in (a) total and (b) each (i) nation and (ii) region of the UK and (c) London. 
|Jobcentre Plus||The pension service||Child support agency||Disability and carers service||Appeal service||The Rent service||Non departmental public bodies||HSE|
|East of England||4,785||955||226||0||6||41||0||213|
|Yorkshire and the Humber||8,442||1,020||333||445||56||61||0||222|
Mr. Laws: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what the average waiting time was for an upgrade from the lower rate of attendance allowance to the higher rate in the latest period for which information is available; and whether there is a mechanism for speeding up such an upgrade based on the urgency of the case. 
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what the average waiting time was for an upgrade from the lower rate of attendance allowance to the higher rate in the latest period for which information is available; and whether there is a mechanism for speeding up such an upgrade based on the urgency of the case.
Claims made under the Special Rule" provision would receive urgent consideration over and above the norm. The special rules cover people who suffer from a progressive disease that is so severe that they are not expected to live longer than six months.
[holding answer 6 March 2006]: We do not collect information on the number of fraudulent benefit claims detected by local authorities. Information on the number of fraudulent benefit claims detected by DWP is provided in the tables. For the years 19978 and 19989 there was a broader definition of 'detected fraud', much of which did not lead to an immediate change in benefit entitlement. For those years, the figures are as follows.
30 Mar 2006 : Column 1192W
|Referrals counted as fraud||Total sanctions(18)|
From April 1999 there was a major change in the method of measuring effective cases, limiting the count only to those cases with an immediate change in benefit entitlement. In view of this change, figures from 19992000 are set out in the table.
|Referrals accepted for investigation||Detected fraud (Effective outcomes)||Total sanctions(20)|
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