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Bob Russell: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government if she will list the occasions since she has held her present office when she has used (a) rail services, (b) the London Underground, (c) tram or light railway services and (d) buses in connection with her ministerial duties. 
To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what the role
of the Government office for the north-east is in relation to planning. 
working with the regional planning body to develop the RSS, on behalf of the Secretary of State. A key responsibility of the Government office during this process is to examine the EiP Panel Report and bring forward the Secretary of States proposed changes for consultation and further consideration prior to the issue of the final RSS;
monitoring local authorities performance in preparing plans and determining planning applications;
advising local authorities preparing local development frameworks on what they need to do to produce sound strategies; and
advising Ministers on whether to use their powers to intervene in local development frameworks and planning applications in the light of national policies and any other considerations of more than local importance.
Angela E. Smith: The fitting and use of sirens is controlled by the Road Vehicles (Construction and Use) Regulations 1986. Under regulation 37(5)(a) the fitting of sirens is restricted to vehicles used by specific emergency and law enforcement agencies, including the police, fire and rescue service and ambulance service.
Regulation 99(5)(a) prohibits the use of sirens on a vehicle which is stationary on a road, at any time, other than at times of danger due to another moving vehicle on or near the road, or on a vehicle in motion on a restricted road between 11.30 pm and 7 am the following morning, except for a vehicle which is being used for one of the relevant purposes specified in regulation 37(5)(a) and it is necessary or desirable to do so either to indicate to other road users the urgency of the purposes for which the vehicle is being used, or to warn other road users of the presence of the vehicle on the road.
Training and guidance on when it is appropriate to use sirens for these purposes is a matter for the individual agencies. We have not issued any guidance to the fire and rescue service as this is an operational matter for individual chief officers.
Angela E. Smith: The UK Geographical Information Strategy, commissioned by the GI Panel, is under development and is expected to be completed in early 2007. No date has yet been set for its publication.
Bob Russell: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what recent discussions she has had with representatives of the voluntary sector about the availability of early retired people to volunteer in future years; and if she will make a statement. 
Angela E. Smith: Ministers have had no such recent discussions. However, there has been engagement at official level with representatives of the voluntary sector about the role of older people and volunteering.
Caroline Flint: The alcohol needs assessment research report published in November 2006 identified that £217 million was spent in 2003-04 by primary care trusts and local authorities to support alcohol treatment. This figure also included a limited amount of support from charitable sources.
Ms Rosie Winterton: There is now clear evidence showing the benefits of breast cancer screening on a population basis for women aged 50 to 70. The evidence for inviting women aged over 70 on a population basis is not so clear.
That is why research has been commissioned on behalf of the advisory committee on breast cancer screening (ACBCS) to bring more clarity to this area. A final report of the research is due shortly, and based on this the ACBCS will advise on a way forward.
The availability of screening for older women is widely publicised. In particular, we have collaborated with Age Concern to produce the leaflet, Over 70? You are still entitled to breast screening. The leaflet is widely available in general practitioner surgeries, health centres, breast screening units and Age Concern outlets and as with Breast ScreeningThe Facts it allows women aged over 70 to make an informed choice on whether to be screened or not.
Mike Penning: To ask the Secretary of State for Health (1) what a time-limited executive agency is; for how long Connecting for Health is planned to exist as a time-limited executive agency; and what the plans are for the future of Connecting for Health beyond that; 
Caroline Flint: The aim of the national programme for information technology in the national health service is to substantially achieve integration of health and social care information systems in England by 2010. The decision that NHS Connecting for Health should be time-limited is in keeping with this timescale, funding plans announced in the 2002 expenditure review, and when contracts for centrally delivered systems were placed. It is also consistent with plans to locate much of the ownership of the national programme, over time, in local and regional bodies in the NHS.
The enduring existence of a central NHS IT function will be subject to review comparable to those of the Departments other executive agencies to ensure they continue to be the best means for delivering the Governments objectives.
Mr. Hoban: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many dental practices in the Hampshire primary care trust area have (a) signed, (b) disputed and (c) refused to sign the new dental contract. 
Primary care trusts are using the funding associated with rejected contracts to commission additional services from other dentists. The current level of re-commissioned services is contained in the following table.
Mr. Hoban: To ask the Secretary of State for Health how many (a) adults and (b) children were registered as NHS patients with dental practices in the Hampshire primary care trust area in each year since 1996. 
|General Dental Services (GDS) and Personal Dental Services (PDS): Patient registrations, by child and adult in England and by PCT within the Hampshire and Isle of Wight SHA, as at 31 March 1997 -2006|
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