|Previous Section||Index||Home Page|
Driving Standards Agency no set rates with other agencies used. No average available.
Highways AgencyAverage hourly rate of other agencies£13.19
GCDAAverage hourly rate of other agencies£10.88
DVLANo information available
The use of temporary staff is something that the Department only considers to cover a short term temporary period such as covering leave or while a permanent resource is found. The Department actively manage their headcount and will consider any displaced staff for temporary roles prior to obtaining a temporary agency worker.
Chris Huhne: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport how many commercial flights departed from UK airports to destinations a distance away of (a) 500 miles or less, (b) 1,000 miles or less, (c) 1,500 miles or less and (d) in intervals of 500 miles up to 10,000 miles in the most recent year for which figures are available; and how many passengers departed from UK airports to such destinations in each case. 
Mrs. Dunwoody: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport how many bus compliance officers are available to monitor bus punctuality in (a) England and (b) the North West region; how bus punctuality is measured; and how many bus operators were found not to be running their services punctually in (i) 2003-04, (ii) 2004-05 and (iii) 2005-06. 
Gillian Merron: I refer my hon. Friend to my answer of 15 June 2006, Official Report, columns 1325-6W, to my hon. Friend the hon. Member for Manchester, Blackley (Graham Stringer), regarding the number of bus compliance officers available in Great Britain. A full account of the measurements for bus punctuality is published in the Traffic Commissioners Practice Direction No.4 which is available on-line via: www.dft.gov.uk.
I also refer my hon. Friend to my answer of 6 July 2006, Official Report, column 1267W, regarding the
number of operators called to public inquiry and the number of orders issued to restrict operations.
Gillian Merron [holding answer 12 July 2006]: Within the context of delivering our long-term strategy for improving bus services across the country, the most recent steps taken by the Government include:
Providing local authorities in England with the resources to support their Local Transport Plan strategies, a large part of which are related to improving bus-related infrastructure (some £571 million invested by local authorities between 2001-02 and 2004-05 in bus improvements);
The introduction of free local concessionary fares for older and disabled people from April 2006, and the announcement of free national concessionary fares from April 2008;
Up to £200 million per year of the Transport Innovation Fund (from 2008-09) has been made available specifically to support packages of measures that will address congestion in towns and cities through demand management and public transport improvements, including better bus services;
Allocating £20 million to fund 43 kick-start schemes to pump-prime promising local bus services;
£54 million available for 2006-07 to support rural bus services.
Providing capital funding for major bus schemes, such as the £42 million contribution towards the Greater Bristol Bus Network scheme.
Chris Huhne: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what research he has undertaken on the (a) number and (b) length of bus routes serving general hospitals in each local authority which draw down a budget for concessionary fares. 
Gillian Merron: None. From 1 April 2006, older and disabled people have been entitled to free off-peak travel within their local authority area. We are introducing a national scheme in April 2008 which will allow older and disabled people free off-peak bus travel anywhere in the country. In the interim, local authorities have the discretion to offer travel concessions to a hospital outside their boundary, based on their judgement of local needs and circumstances and their overall financial priorities.
Chris Huhne: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport how many bus passengers there were in each local authority administering concessionary fares (a) in the last year for which figures are available and (b) (i) five and (ii) 10 years previously; how many bus routes there were in each such local authority; and what the total mileage of routes was in each authority. 
|Region/country||Age of fleet (years)|
| Note: This table shows the age of buses by their region of registration, which may not be the same as their main area of operation. Source: DVLA|
Gillian Merron: None. The Transport Act 2000 places a duty on bus operators to offer the statutory minimum entitlement; it is an offence if they fail to comply with that obligation. It is for Travel Concession Authorities to decide on how best to check compliance based on local circumstances and to take any necessary action.
Rosie Cooper: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what assessment he has made of the impact of free bus travel on the existing arrangements for bus travel between (a) Skelmersdale and Liverpool, (b) Ormskirk and Wigan and (c) Skelmersdale and Southport. 
Gillian Merron: The Department does not yet have full details of the discretionary enhancements that will be offered by local authorities. We will be carrying out a comprehensive survey of concessionary fares schemes shortly.
Kerry McCarthy: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport when he expects to make an announcement on the outcome of the Greater Bristol Bus Network bid for new Showcase Bus routes submitted in July 2005. 
Gillian Merron: On 6 July 2006 the Greater Bristol Bus Network Scheme was awarded Programme Entry into the Departments local authority major scheme programme, allowing the scheme to progress through statutory procedures.
Gillian Merron: The majority of subsidies for local bus services, including those in rural areas, are provided through unhypothecated funding from the Governments Revenue Support Grant (RSG) to local authorities.
The Department has separately provided specific funding for rural bus services to local authorities in England through the Rural Bus Subsidy Grant (RBSG) since 1998, and the Rural Bus Challenge (RBC) between 1998 and 2003.
Gillian Merron: There are no plans to extend yellow bus schemes to more pilot areas or to the whole of England. Individual local authorities and passenger transport executives are encouraged to consider these and other dedicated school bus schemes as part of broader local transport planning and decide if they would be appropriate to their area.
The Education and Inspections Bill includes provisions to improve home to school transport, including enabling a small number of local authorities to propose Pathfinder schemes to pilot innovative approaches to home to school transport which would focus on better school bus provision for more pupils and which could include trialling yellow bus schemes.
DfES has policy responsibility for home to school transport and has published the School Travel Pathfinder Draft Prospectus and Guidance alongside the Education and Inspections Bill. This includes details of the criteria that the Secretary of State for Education and Skills will apply in deciding which schemes to approve (http://www.teachernet.gov.uk/docbank/index.cfm?id=9800).
Mr. Amess: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport if he will list the unnumbered command papers produced by his Department in each session since 1976; say how (a) hon. Members and (b) members of the public can (i) inspect and (ii) obtain copies; and if he will make a statement. 
Gillian Merron: Documents which are laid before Parliament as unnumbered Command Papers are generally restricted to Explanatory Notes to Treaties, Explanatory Memorandums to Statutory Instruments and some Treasury Minutes. All other documents are published in the Numbered Command Papers series.
Roger Berry: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport how many disabled staff in his Department received support through the Access to Work scheme (a) in each of the last five years and (b) in 2006-07. 
Gillian Merron: The Department has used the Access to Work scheme particularly in our larger agencies. Records of the support provided via the service are either not centrally recorded or incomplete. As it is for the individual to apply for help via the scheme, the employer will not always be aware that support has been provided.
|Next Section||Index||Home Page|