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Student Loans

Alan Simpson: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills how many and what proportion of outstanding student loans are in accounts where debt recovery is inactive (a) in total and (b) where no repayments have been made over the last three years; and what the total value of such loans is in each case. [63517]

Bill Rammell: Debt recovery is not inactive on any accounts; the Student Loans Company (SLC) take appropriate action to collect repayments on all accounts.
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There are 234,600 UK borrowers with a loan balance of £754 million with publicly-owned mortgage-style loans past the statutory repayment due date (SRDD) 1 who had made no repayments in the last three years (as at 31 March 2005). They represent 36 per cent. of borrowers who had loans past SRDD during the three-year period.

93 per cent. of those who made no repayments were not required to repay for the whole three-year period, because their gross annual income was below the relevant earning threshold. The remainder were subject to the SLC arrears recovery process. This includes several attempts to contact the borrower by letter and telephone, and where necessary passing the case to SLC's internal specialist tracing or arrears collection agents.

Ultimately the borrower may be contacted by an external debt collection agency and/or face legal action.

Data is not yet available on income-contingent loans. Borrowers are not required to make repayments if they are earning less than £15,000 and when due these repayments are generally collected automatically through the tax system.

University Academic Staff

Rosie Cooper: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills what the average annual earnings were of full-time members of the academic staff of universities in (a) West Lancashire and (b) Lancashire in the last year for which figures are available. [64290]

Bill Rammell: The latest information, and the corresponding figures for all higher education institutions in England, is given in the following table.
Average salary(11) of full-time HE academic staff with teaching responsibilities higher education institutions 2004/05

Average salary (£)
West Lancashire(12)Lancashire(13)England
Senior Lecturers and Researchers38,30031,50041,500

(11) Average salary is derived from the gross basic salary per annum, in pounds sterling as stated in the contract at the reference date of HESA's staff count (July 31) or at the end date of the contract if earlier. It does not include any regular payments for additional duties, responsibility allowances or honoraria, regardless of their source. Figures have been rounded to the nearest 100.
(12) Includes Edge Hill College of HE.
(13) Includes Edge Hill College of HE, St Martin's College, University of Bolton, University of Central Lancashire, and the University of Lancaster.
Higher Education Statistics Agency (HESA).


Home Working

David Simpson: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport how many people in her
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Department have been enabled to work from home in each of the last three years; and if she will make a statement. [67982]

Mr. Lammy: My Department has extended the option to work flexibly to all staff and aims to support them in balancing their work and home responsibilities. The Department is keen to see flexibility in working patterns being made available as widely as possible to enable staff to match their own needs with the requirements of the job.

My Department only holds records of homeworkers who require IT equipment. There is no record of the amount of people who work from home on an ad hoc basis or those not requiring equipment. Following are the figures for the last three years

Olympic Delivery Authority

Hywel Williams: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport what discussions she has had with (a) the Secretary of State for Wales and (b) the Welsh Assembly Government on the appointment of members of the Olympic Delivery Authority; and what steps were taken to ensure representation on the authority from all parts of the UK. [67913]

Tessa Jowell: No specific discussions took place with (a) the Secretary of State for Wales or (b) the Welsh Assembly Government on the appointment of members of the Olympic Delivery Authority. In keeping with the provisions in the London Olympic Games and Paralympic Games Act 2006 the appointments were made by the Secretary of State after consultation with the Mayor of London.

The role specification sought people from a variety of backgrounds with a combination of skills and experience. It did not seek individuals with specific representative functions in relation to constituent countries of the UK . The roles were advertised in the national press and the posts attracted over 450 applications from across the UK. All appointments were made on the basis of merit following a fair and open competition.

Hywel Williams: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport what the process was for recruitment and selection of the members of the Olympic Delivery Authority; and (a) when and (b) in what publications the positions were advertised. [67914]

Tessa Jowell: The recruitment process took full account of the Nolan principles, and the Commissioner for Public Appointments' Code of Practice. It involved a number of formal steps, including the preparation of a role specification against which candidates would be considered, advertising in the national press and on the DCMS and Cabinet Office websites, and interview of selected candidates by a panel comprising Jack Lemley (chair of the ODA), a DCMS director, a representative from the Greater London Authority, and an OCPA
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approved independent assessor. Candidates were considered against the published criteria, and the selection panel made recommendations to the Secretary of State on whom to appoint. The Secretary of State, after consultation with the Mayor, has appointed 12 members who collectively most closely meet the needs of the board at this time.

The positions were advertised in The Sunday Times on 11 December and in The Times Public Agenda on 13 December. The vacancies were also advertised on the Cabinet Office and DCMS websites.

Hywel Williams: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport what the (a) job description and (b) person specification was for members of the Olympic Delivery Authority. [67915]

Tessa Jowell: The full role specification for members of the Olympic Delivery Authority (ODA) was published on the DCMS website until the closing date of 6 January 2006. I have arranged for copies to be deposited in the House Libraries.

The role specification provided details of the role and skills required of ODA members. It explained that the role of the board was to work in partnership with the chief executive, David Higgins, and his staff, helping to set the overall direction, policy and plans of the authority, in accordance with the Olympic plans and its statutory duties, and to provide advice and support to the executive team in accordance with best governance practice and guidance. All board members were required to demonstrate commitment to public service values and the principles of public life (particularly integrity and probity), be respected by or have credibility with their peers, have significant experience of leadership, management and governance at board levels within the public, not for profit or private sector, and possess an understanding of the public policy context and the role of Government. In addition it was agreed that board members should have skills or experience in one or more of a number of other areas including construction and programme management, transport, regeneration, local government, community issues, finance, media and communications, disability issues, legal issues and human resources.

Hywel Williams: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport what responsibilities the Olympic Delivery Authority has for (a) Olympic preparations, (b) venues and (c) events outside London and the South East of England. [67916]

Tessa Jowell: Under section 4(1) of the London Olympic Games and Paralympic Games Act 2006, the Olympic Delivery Authority (ODA) may take any action that it thinks necessary or expedient for the purpose of:

Under the Act the ODA can carry out these functions anywhere in the UK.
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The staging of Olympic events is the responsibility of the London Organising Committee of the Olympic Games Ltd. (LOCOG).

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