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Mr. Jenkins: To ask the Deputy Prime Minister what funding is available for initiatives to move people from temporary to permanent housing from within the 2006 to 2008 National Affordable Housing Programme in Tamworth; and if he will make a statement. 
The National Affordable Housing Programme (NAHP) funds provision of affordable housing; 2006-08 funding has now been allocated. Two schemes
in Tamworth received the full amount requested of £1,049,540. This will provide 28 new housing units which will assist moves from temporary to permanent accommodation. Two other schemes are expected to proceed under SI06 agreements without NAHP funding and expect to provide a further 29 units.
Mr. Hands: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what recent guidance her Department and its predecessor have given to local authorities on modernising local government structures; and if she will make a statement. 
Mr. Woolas: We have not issued any such recent guidance to local authorities. We have been engaged in a wide-ranging debate about local governance, including the future of two-tier arrangements in the shire areas and will finalise our position at about the same time as the publication of the proposed White Paper later in the year.
Mr. Hands: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government whether she has assumed the ministerial powers in the Local Government Act 2000 in relation to new arrangements for local governance. 
Andrew Rosindell: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what the cost was of (a) monitoring, (b) reporting on and (c) collecting from local authorities mid-year updates in respect of the 2005-06 Annual Efficiency Statements efficiency reports. 
Mr. Woolas: We do not hold the data requested for costs incurred by councils and central Government relating to the monitoring and reporting of efficiency statements. The principal work arising from the collection of statements is the review of their contents undertaken by personnel in the DCLG, other Government Departments and the Regional Centres of Excellence. This work helps those organisations to obtain a better understanding of the areas where councils are seeking and achieving efficiency gains, so support to councils can be better targeted.
In terms of collecting efficiency statements, local authorities are required to submit them through an online submission facility: the esd-toolkit. This allows all the data from councils' statements to be collated automatically at the deadline for submissions. For the 2005-06 Mid-Year Update efficiency statements, this was provided at no extra cost as part of an existing contract with the Improvement and Development Agency.
Andrew Rosindell: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what funds were distributed to each London borough to increase efficiency in local government in each of the last three years. 
Mr. Woolas: Funding to support efficiency in local authorities is distributed to nine Regional Centres of Excellence (RCEs). Each RCE has local governance arrangements reflecting authorities across the region.
Funding for individual projects, many of which operate across local authority boundaries, are decided by the RCE board. Since 2004-05, funding made available to the London RCE in relation to taking forward the Efficiency Agenda is as follows:
|Receiving authorityLondon Regional Centre of Excellence|
Mr. Austin Mitchell: To ask the Deputy Prime Minister how much debt write-off and gap funding for stock transfers has cost since 1997; what provision has been made for each of the next five years; and which budget line this expenditure comes under. 
Housing debt is funded through the Housing Revenue Account (HRA) subsidy system. Where a local authority transfers its housing to an RSL and the receipt it receives is not sufficient to repay the outstanding debt attributable to the housing, the Office will make a one-off payment where the debt is held with the Public Works Loans Board. The one-off payment is made to discharge the Office's continued liability, through the HRA, to pay subsidy on an authority's housing attributable debt that remains after transfer. Since 1997 the Office has repaid £1.787 billion of local authority debt (including early redemption fees) in this way. There is voted provision of £616 million per year from 2005-06 to 2007-08 for overhanging debt.
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