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Mr. Woolas: Waste collection is one of the district-level services included in the Environmental, Protective and Cultural Services (EPCS) block. The EPCS block is one of seven service blocks supported via Formula Grant. Formula Grant comprises Revenue Support Grant, Redistributed Business Rates and principal formula Police Grant. Formula Grant is an unhypothecated block grant: authorities are able to use the money for any service. This, together with the way in which Formula Grant is calculated, particularly the application of floor damping, means that it is not possible to say how much grant was provided for environmental, protective and cultural services.
Anne Snelgrove: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what assessment she has made of the effectiveness of newspaper advertising as a means of communicating information about proposals under the Local Authorities Traffic Orders (Procedure) (England and Wales) Regulations 1996. 
A working group of representatives from national and local authorities has recently considered whether the procedures for advertising Traffic Regulation Orders should be streamlined. The group made several recommendations concerning the advertising of different types of order. We are considering the recommendations and will consult publicly on formal proposals arising.
Alison Seabeck: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government (1) what steps she is taking to encourage local authorities (a) to join and (b) to participate in the activities of societies and other bodies associated with minimum dig working; 
The Department welcomes local authority participation in professional bodies which promote the adoption of best practice in highway maintenance. Through the UK Roads Board, my officials have regular contact with the County Surveyors Society and the local authority Technical Advisors Group, which represent engineers from a wide range of local authorities. Last year, the Board published Well-maintained Highways (TSO, July 2005), a code of practice for highway maintenance management, which encourages both a focus on the needs of road users and continuous improvement in delivery (which includes effective staff training).
Mrs. Spelman: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what requirements councils are under to publish (a) their parking accounts and (b) a statement of their parking enforcement activities. 
Councils are currently under no obligation to publish their parking accounts or a statement of their parking enforcement activities. The current public consultation Better ParkingKeeping Traffic Moving, launched on 12 July 2006, proposes that English councils with decriminalised parking enforcement powers should publish annual reports containing financial and statistical data about their parking activities.
Fiona Mactaggart: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what assessment she has made of the impact on local authorities of the mid-year population estimates; and if she will make a statement. 
Mr. Woolas: Population data supplied by the Office for National Statistics are used throughout the formula grant distribution system. Both population projections and mid-year estimates are used in relative needs formula indicators. Population projections are also used to determine the relative needs amount, relative resource amount and central allocation as these are calculated on a per head basis. The distribution of formula grant is also affected by the social and economic characteristics of an area, a councils relative ability to raise council tax, and floor damping.
Department for Communities and Local Government officials have met a number of local authorities, including Slough, to discuss their concerns on their mid-year population estimates. However, the ONS population figures remain the best data available on a consistent basis for all authorities.
Mr. Amess: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government how many public appointments are within her patronage; what (a) salary and (b) other emoluments are attached to each; and what the comparable figures were in (i) 1976, (ii) 1986 and (iii) 1996. 
Angela E. Smith:
Details of public appointments to public bodies sponsored by the Department for Communities and Local Government can be found in Public Bodies, copies of which are in the Library. Public Bodies has been published annually since 1980
and the most recent edition provides figures for 2005. Each edition of Public Bodies contains details on the number of public appointments and remuneration details for that particular year. The Department for Communities and Local Government was created in May 2006 as a result of Machinery of Government changes; its predecessor, the Office of the Deputy Prime Minister, was formed in May 2002. Therefore comparable figures are not available.
Current details held centrally on the remuneration attached to each Chair and Board Member, correct at 31 March 2006, are set out in the following table. The information covers bodies that fall within the remit of the Commissioner for Pubic Appointments.
|Public Body||Chair (£)||Members (£)||Time Input|
|Public Body||Chair/Deputy Chair (£)||Members/Members with additional duties (£)||Time Input|
|Public Body||Chair/Deputy Chair (£)||Members (£)||Time Input|
| Key pa = per annum pd = per day dpw = days per week dpm = days per month dpy = days per year|
Mr. Carmichael: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what the budget of each local authority for road and pavement maintenance was in each of the last two years; and what the overspend or underspend of each was in each year. 
The Department provides capital maintenance funding for English local highways authorities outside London for investment in their highway network, including its structures and street lighting. It is for each local authority to determine how its allocations are spent, in line with its priorities.
Sandra Gidley: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government when her Department plans to publish the Supporting People National Strategy; and if she will make a statement. 
Mr. Woolas: I published an initial strategy paper for consultation, Creating Sustainable Communities, in November of last year. Following extensive consultation, I published Supporting Independence: Next Steps in our Supporting People Strategy on the 11 July this year, which outlined a number of potential areas for development of the programme. A final strategy is currently being developed, and is planned for publication in the autumn.
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