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Dawn Primarolo: HM Revenue and Customs (HMRC) are currently discussing the impact of a VAT and duties tribunal decision on the supply of clinical academics by universities to NHS trusts with the Department of Health, university representative bodies, and other interested parties. HMRC will issue full guidance on the VAT position in due course.
Mr. Francois: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what consultation took place with (a) NHS trusts and (b) their representatives before HM Revenue and Customs published guidelines in April 2006 directing that NHS trusts should not be recovering VAT incurred in providing doctors and locums under Professional Services Heading 52. 
Dawn Primarolo: The present Treasury directionissued under section 41 (3) of the Value Added Tax Act 1994authorises Government Departments and the NHS to recover VAT incurred on nursing services (heading 41), which includes the hire of nurses from outside the NHS. Neither that heading, nor heading 52, extends to the hiring in of other medical staff. Guidance from HM Revenue and Customs in April 2006 simply clarified the correct VAT position. As such, no consultation was required or took place on this matter.
Section 41 (3) does not refund all the VAT that NHS trusts incur on the items they purchase. The overarching principle is thatin common with the public sector in generalirrecoverable VAT incurred by NHS trusts is included in the overall funding of the NHS.
Mrs. May: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer (1) how many written parliamentary questions to his Department in the 2005-06 session were not answered wholly or in part on grounds of disproportionate cost; 
Mr. Philip Hammond: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer how many individuals who will reach state pension age on or after 6 April 2010 have paid Class 3 national insurance contributions since (a) 25 May 2006 and (b) 30 November 2005. 
Mr. Philip Hammond:
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer if he will place in the Library the advice on possible changes to the qualifying conditions for
receipt of a full basic state pension that was issued to individuals applying to pay Class 3 national insurance contributions (a) between 30 November 2005 and 25 May 2006 and (b) since 26 May 2006. 
Mr. Hoban: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer if he will list each of the documents published as part of the consultation on the pensions tax simplification legislation included within the Finance Act 2004. 
Ed Balls: The Government's proposals were set out in two main consultation documents Simplifying the taxation of pensions: increasing choice and flexibility for all (December 2002) and Simplifying the taxation of pensions: the Government's proposals (December 2003). Summaries of the responses to the two consultations were published on 14 July 2003 and 25 November 2004 on the HMRC website. The proposals were also extensively discussed at a series of public consultation meetings and individual seminars and meetings with the pensions industry.
On 9 August 2004 draft Regulations, provided for under powers contained in the Finance Act 2004, were published for consultation and a document summarising the consultation responses was published on 8 March 2005. Most of the remaining regulations were published in draft but were not consulted on.
Ed Balls: Figures are not available, but the numbers of individuals who have entered into alternatively secured pensions (ASP) to date is likely to be small, as the ASP facility only became available on 6 April 2006 and generally only members who have reached age 75 since that date may use ASP.
In addition, pension schemes that are unable to trace a member when they reach age 75 hold their pension scheme assets as an ASP fund. Only a relatively small number of individuals are likely to be in this position.
Changes to the new regime were enacted under sections 101-102 and schedule 10 of the Finance Act 2005. Many of these changes provided additional flexibilities for schemes and individuals and clarified aspects of the new rules to smooth the transition from the previous to the new simplified regime. There were other changes, for example to provide for the pension protection fund to receive the same types of tax reliefs as registered pension schemes.
Changes were also made under sections 158-161 and schedules 21-23 of the Finance Act 2006, which provided additional flexibilities for pension schemes, providers and members and also dealt with other matters, for example imposing certain tax charges on some types of registered pension scheme which hold residential property or other taxable assets as investments.
Mr. Timms: In the 2006 pre-Budget report the Government confirmed that disposals in 2004-05 and 2005-06 totalled £12.2 billion and that it is on track to meet the £30-billion asset disposal target by 2010-11. A separate target has not been set for each year, but estimates and projections for the period to 2007-08 are set out in table B21 of the 2006 pre-Budget report.
Mr. Timms: The Home Office's spending requirements are assessed as part of the spending review process. Budget 2006 announced an early spending settlement for the Home Office which maintains the Home Office's 2007-08 departmental expenditure limit in real terms over the years 2008-09, 2009-10 and 2010-11. This settlement takes into account the Department's and the police service's pressures, priorities and potential savings.
Mr. Gauke: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what additional capital expenditure relating to (a) schools and (b) (i) further and (ii) higher education colleges was announced in the 2006 pre-Budget report. 
Mr. Timms: The 2006 pre-Budget report announced that capital investment in education will rise by an additional £250 million, £750 million and £1,850 million over the years 2008-09 to 2010-11. These additions ensure that, as announced in Budget 2006, capital investment in schools will rise from £6.4 billion in 2007-08 to £8 billion in 2010-11.
Mr. Gauke: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what additional spending per child was announced in the 2006 pre-Budget report for (a) primary and (b) secondary schools, excluding those sums previously announced. 
These additions, channelled through the schools standards grant, mean that direct payments to schools will rise to an average of £200 per pupil for primary schools and £225 per pupil for secondary schools in 2007-08. This compares to 2006-07 levels of direct payments at £159 and £171 respectively; and previously planned 2007-08 levels of direct payments at £178 and £213 respectively.
The pre-Budget report also announced £10 million in 2007-08 to improve guidance to schools on supporting boys' reading and writing, and provide additional small group support and tuition targeted towards 400 secondary schools where the gender gap is largest.
Mr. Francois: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer pursuant to the answer of 11 December 2006, Official Report, column 846W, on social security benefits: terrorism, who the two people are who have had benefits payments licensed; what the (a) type and (b) weekly amount is of each benefit they claim; and what (i) type and (ii) amount of each benefit was claimed by those people issued with each of the 37 licences issued. 
Ed Balls: For privacy reasons, we are unable to release the names of individuals who are receiving state benefits, nor the type and amount of benefits. The 37 licences referred to in my written answer of 11 December 2006, Official Report, column 846W, were all non-benefits licences. As stated in that answer, 35 of these licences were for legal expenses and the other two were for basic expenses.
Mr. Hoban: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer if he will list the statutory instruments (a) enacted and (b) published in draft under powers to make regulations in those parts of the Finance Act 2004 and Finance Act 2006 that relate to the tax regime for pensions. 
Ed Balls: A list of the statutory instruments that were enacted under powers included in the legislation on the new pensions regime in Finance Acts 2004 and 2006 has been placed in the Library of the House. All were published on the HMRC website in draft before enactment except for SI No. 1962 The Taxation of Pension Schemes (Transitional Provisions)(Amendment) Order 2006.
Danny Alexander: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what the take-up rate is for (a) child benefit, (b) child tax credit and (c) working tax credit in (i) the Highland Council area, (ii) Glasgow, (iii) Scotland and (iv) the UK. 
Dawn Primarolo: For information on take-up rate of child benefit in the UK I refer the hon. Member to the answer given to the right hon. Member for North Tyneside (Mr. Byers) on 7 March 2006, Official Report, column 1296W.
Information on the number of working families with children eligible for, but not receiving tax credits broken down by country and Government Office region is available in table 9 of the 2003-04 tax credit take-up rates publication at:
Mr. Francois: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what the total number of tax credit overpayments made to couples who have since separated is; and in how many such cases (a) overpayments are owed, (b) recovery of the whole of the joint liability is being pursued against one party only and (c) one party is untraceable. 
Dawn Primarolo: At April 2006 there were about 350,000 claims originally made by couples, who are recorded as having split up by that date, and for which there were outstanding undisputed overpayments over £10 for either 2003-04 or 2004-05.
Mr. Allen: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what the expected response time is for customer calls to the Derby Debt Management Team of the Tax Credit Office on the telephone number 01332 724 403; what mechanisms are in place to prevent penalties arising due to customers not being able to make contact within set deadlines due to a lack of telephone line capacity; and if he will make a statement. 
Dawn Primarolo: HMRC aims to answer calls promptly and additional resources were diverted to deal with the expected peak in calls at Derby recently. However, in some of these cases, where it had not proved possible to answer calls, the department has dealt with cases sympathetically and any costs charged in these circumstances have been written off.
Mr. Francois: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer pursuant to the answer of 18 July 2006, Official Report, column 360W, on tax credits, how many tax credit overpayments were successfully disputed in each month since April 2006. 
Dawn Primarolo [holding answer 18 December 2006]: For the number of tax credits overpayments written off on the grounds of official error from May 2006 to October 2006 inclusive, I refer the hon. Member to the answers I gave the hon. Member for Inverness, Nairn, Badenoch and Strathspey (Danny Alexander) on 10 October 2006, Official Report, columns 730-31W and the hon. Member for Yeovil (Mr. Laws) on 31 October 2006, Official Report, column 318-19W.
For October 2006 and November 2006, the number of tax credits overpayments successfully disputedthat is, where the overpayment was written off in full or in part by the tax credit office because of official error was around:
|2006||Number written off (fully or partially) (around)|
Anne Main: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer how many compensatory payments were made in respect of tax credits in each of the last five years; and what the total cost was of these payments. 
Dawn Primarolo: For the number and value of compensation payments made in 2003-04, the year that child and working tax credits were introduced, I refer the hon. Member to the answers I gave the hon. Member for Northavon (Steve Webb) and to the hon. Member for the former Hamilton South constituency (Mr. Tynan) on 20 July 2004, Official Report, column 191W.
For the number of compensation payments made in 2005-06, I refer to the answers that I gave hon. Member for Yeovil on 15 November 2005, Official Report, column l212W and 18 July 2006, Official Report, columns 360-61W. For the value of compensation payments made in 2005-06, I refer the hon. Member to the answer that I gave the hon. Member for North West Cambridgeshire (Mr. Vara) on 30 November 2006, Official Report, columns 843-44W.
Mr. Francois: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer how many prisoners are in receipt of tax credits; and how much was paid in tax credits to prisoners in each year from 2003-04 to 2006-07 to date. 
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