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The definition of council revenue net current expenditure used here is expenditure on employees and running
expenses net of sales, fees and charges, internal recharges and other non-grant income (such as receipts from other authorities), but gross of expenditure funded by specific grants and interest receipts.
Comparisons across years may not be valid owing to changing local authority responsibilities and method of reporting the information. In particular, budget data for 2006-07 have been calculated on an FRS 17 basis. Hence, figures for different years may not be directly comparable.
Bob Russell: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport what estimate she has made of the percentage of local authority (a) capital and (b) revenue funding that was spent on sport in each of the last five financial years; and if she will make a statement. 
The revenue data are as reported by local authorities and are taken from Revenue Outturn (RO) and Revenue Summary (RS) returns for 2001-02 to 2004-05, and Revenue Account budget (RA) returns for 2005-06.
The definition of council revenue net current expenditure used here is expenditure on employees and running expenses net of sales, fees and charges, internal recharges and other non-grant income (such as receipts from other authorities), but gross of expenditure funded by specific grants and interest receipts.
Comparisons across years may not be valid owing to changing local authority responsibilities and method of reporting the information. In particular, the revenue outturn data for 2001-02 to 2002-03 have been calculated on a non-FRS (Financial Reporting Standard) 17 basis while the outturn data for 2003-04 to 2004-05 have been calculated on an FRS 17 basis. The budget data for 2005-06 are a mix of FRS 17 and non-FRS 17. This is because for their 2005-06 budget forms local authorities, after consultation, were given the option to complete their forms either on a non-FRS 17 basis or on an FRS 17 basis. Hence, figures for different years may not be directly comparable.
Chris Huhne: To ask the Solicitor-General what the (a) originally estimated, (b) most recently estimated and (c) outturn cost was in each of the five largest information technology contracts agreed with outside suppliers over the last five years. 
The Solicitor-General: I am answering this question on behalf of the Crown Prosecution Service, the Treasury Solicitor's Department, the Serious Fraud Office, the Revenue and Customs Prosecutions Office and HM Crown Prosecution Service Inspectorate.
(a) When the COMPASS contract was awarded (December 2001 to begin April 2002) the value was estimated at approximately £240 million over the period of the contract, based on the parameters at the time such as the number of sites and users and the legislative environment.
(b) The estimated outturn cost to the end of the contract is £408 million.
(c) The outturn cost as at 31 March 2006 is £122 million.
The difference between the original estimate and the most recent estimate of the cost of the contract reflects: higher staff numbers, a larger number of locations where COMPASS is available, improvements in service levels and the development of a new system to support witness care units, none of which could have been anticipated when the contract was let.
(a) Original estimate for full life costs based on best and final offer September 2003: £9.723 million.
(b) Revised estimate for full life costs based as at March 2005: £10.195 million.
(c) Outturn to 31 March 2006: £6.103 million.
Other, smaller contracts (for example the payroll and HR systems and the corporate information system) began over five years ago and have subsequently been incorporated into the wider COMPASS programme.
For the Treasury Solicitor's Department the following table shows the originally estimated, most recently estimated and outturn cost of the five largest IT contracts agreed with outside suppliers over the last five years.
|Contract||Original estimate (a)||Most recent estimate (b)||Outturn cost (c)||Comments|
|Total expenditure 2001-05|
These contracts are all for ongoing IT or technology related services and not for discrete projects. Expenditure is controlled by purchase orders and annual budgets, so the question of estimated and outturn expenditure does not arise.
The Revenue and Customs Prosecutions Office was established as a new Department on 18 April 2005. Since its creation RCPO has procured the majority of its information technology services from HM Revenue and Customs. The outturn cost of these services during 2005-06 was £1.9 million. In addition to these services RCPO has used IT consultants in relation to specific
projects. Their total cost during 2005-06 was £0.13 million. The Department has recently created a new post, Head of Information Services, and this was filled on 3 May 2006 initially on a six-month contract by an IT professional with 18 years experience in the IT industry and with technical, project management and service delivery expertise. He also has considerable experience in working with UK central Government. As well as receiving a considerable amount of technical and professional training from a previous employee, IBM, he has a Diploma in Business Studies.
The only IT investment undertaken through our own budget relates to the design/development and improvement/updating of the HMCPSI website. Over the last four years a total of £22,264 (incl. VAT) has been spent on this work.
Mr. Hoyle: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what guidance the Government have given to local authorities on the treatment of money allocated to councils for the concessionary travel scheme but not spent; and whether such under-spending should be returned to central Government. 
Local authorities responsibilities for concessionary fares are funded through general grant from Government (consisting mainly of Revenue Support Grant and re-distributed National Non-Domestic Rates) and through income generated by authorities, including council tax. General grant is not hypothecated to a particular service and councils are free to use the funding in line with the wishes of their electorate, taking into account their statutory responsibilities.
Mr. Hands: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, pursuant to the answer of 4 May 2006, Official Report, column 1800W to my hon. Friend the Member for Brentwood and Ongar (Mr. Pickles), on council tax, how many copies of council tax bills were received by (a) registered and (b) recorded post at (i) Eland House and (ii) 26 Whitehall; and how many of the written representations about council tax included copies of council tax bills. 
Mr. Woolas: It is not possible to identify reliably which documents received by registered or recorded post by the Office of the Deputy Prime Minister were copies of council tax bills. Approximately 1,700 of the copies of council tax bills received came with a separate written representation enclosed.
Angela E. Smith: The Department for Communities and Local Government was created on 5 May 2006. Since that time the ministerial office of my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government has not been decorated.
There is no redecoration programme in the DCLG HQ buildings, with all such work being carried out on an ad-hoc basis following routine inspections by the Facilities Management team. The dates of redecoration of any particular area during the last five years could be provided only at disproportionate cost.
Mr. Amess: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what her practice is regarding meeting, discussing and taking into account the views and opinions of (a) private individuals and (b) representatives of organisations, when drawing up and framing legislation to be introduced by her Department; and if she will make a statement. 
Angela E. Smith: The Department always seeks a full range of views when drawing up and framing legislation. Consultation is a key part of the policy-making process; both informal and formal. The Department holds regular meetings with representatives of the principal stakeholder groups for our policy areas and with relevant experts. Organisations and individuals can also contribute to the Departments formal consultations which abide by the Code of Conduct on Consultation. Known stakeholders are generally alerted when a formal consultation is taking place. As required by the code, the Department then gives feedback on the responses received and on how the consultation process influenced the policy decision.
For example the Greater London Authority: Proposals for Additional Powers consultation ran from 30 November 2005 to 22 February 2006. Copies of the consultation paper were circulated to over 400 organisations and individuals with an interest in Londons governance, and to all main public libraries in London. The proposals were also made publicly available on the DCLG and GLA websites. In addition the Minister for London hosted two seminars as part of the overall review, attended by a range of stakeholders. DCLG received 337 consultation responses and a summary of responses was published on 13 July 2006 alongside our conclusions on what new powers the GLA should be given. Most of these will be enacted by primary or secondary legislation and we intend to undertake further consultation as part of the implementation process.
To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what assessment she has made of the impact of the judicial decision in Beasley v. National Council of YMCAs QBD (2000)
RA 429; and whether she plans to bring forward measures in response to the situation on the treatment of self-contained living quarters within hostels for council tax purposes. 
Mr. Woolas: The Department for Communities and Local Government has made no assessment of the impact of the decision in Beasley v. National Council of YMCAs. The Valuation Office Agency takes account of all relevant case law when determining whether to band a dwelling separately for council tax purposes. The Government have no plans to amend the current legislation governing when a single property should be treated as more than one dwelling for council tax purposes.
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