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Mr. Paul Goodman: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government whether (a) Ministers and (b) civil servants in her Department have held meetings with the Islamic Sharia Council; and if she will make a statement. 
Mr. Peter Ainsworth: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what guidance has been produced for local authorities on the effective use of the planning process in reducing light pollution. 
Jim Cousins: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government whether she has received from the Valuation Office Agency the information on which the local authority business growth incentive (LABGI) will be based; if she will publish this information; and when the City of Newcastle will be informed of the LABGI it will receive. 
Mr. Woolas: The information on which the Local Authority Business Growth Incentives Scheme (LABGI) will be based has not yet been received by this Department. Our September announcement confirmed our intention to notify local authorities of their grant in February 2007. The supporting information will be published on our website at this time.
John Mann: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what assessment she has made of the performance of local authorities in matching central government funding for disabled facilities grants. 
Yvette Cooper: The latest available data on mandatory disabled facilities grant (DFG) expenditure from the local authorities housing strategy statistical return show that £221 million was spent in 2005-06. Central government contribution to 60 per cent. of DFG was £121 million, while authorities contributed £100 million, well above the required 40 per cent. matched funding.
In addition, local authorities are required to complete an annual claim form to the Department and maintain financial records which are subject to auditing requirements. The audit includes a check on the level of contribution claimed from central government. If an authority cannot find the matched funding, central government funding cannot be used. However, authorities do have the flexibility to carry over funding to the following year.
Mrs. Spelman: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government (1) how much Government grant per head was received by each local authority in England, excluding education spending, in each year from 1998-99 to the most recent year for which figures are available; 
(2) how much was allocated in terms of per capita government grant to local authorities for purposes other than education in (a) 1998-99 and (b) the most recent year for which figures are available. 
Mr. Paul Goodman: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what response she has made to the Mosques and Imams National Advisory Body Consultation Findings and Conclusions. 
[holding answer 15 January 2007]: The Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government has not yet responded to any report on
the Mosques and Imams National Advisory Board. The board has not yet published a formal report of their programme of consultations but meetings have been held to discuss the programme and the Government look forward to their findings.
Mr. Laws: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what the cash equivalent transfer value is of the public sector pensions of the 10 highest paid members of staff in her Department and its executive agencies; and if she will make a statement. 
Angela E. Smith: These individuals are named in the annual remuneration reports which forms part of the resource accounts completed by Communities and Local Government and each of its executive agencies, and the cash equivalent transfer value of their public sector pensions is therefore reported annually. This information is already in the public domain.
Mr. Hayes: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government how much has been spent on housing rough sleepers since May 1997; and what reductions in rough sleeping have resulted. 
Yvette Cooper: The Government recognised the need to increase investment significantly in order to tackle rough sleeping in a sustainable way. This helped achieve the Prime Ministers target of a two-thirds reduction in rough sleeping from the 1998 baseline of 1,850 rough sleepers on the streets of England on any single night. The target was met ahead of time and to date is being sustained. In 2006 there were just over 500, a figure which represents a 73 per cent. reduction on the baseline level.
Historically, there has been capital expenditure by the Housing Corporation under several rough sleepers initiatives. The rough sleepers unit was set up in 1999 with a budget of almost £200 million over its three-year lifetime. Almost £80 million was administered by the Housing Corporation for permanent accommodation.
Since 2002-03 local authorities have been responsible for tackling rough sleeping as part of their homeless strategies. Homelessness grant is allocated to support local strategies to ensure the rough sleeping target is sustained. The £90 million Hostels Capital Improvement Programme for 2005-06 to 2007-08 is bringing further improvements by making hostels places of change.
Finally, the Supporting People grant programme allocated through 150 administering authorities enables the provision of housing-related support services to a wide range of vulnerable groups, including rough sleepers.
|Local authorities||Voluntary organisations||Hostels Capital Improvement Programme||Supporting People|
|n/a = Not yet available.|
Mike Penning: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what the (a) longest, (b) shortest and (c) average waiting times were for persons seeking (i) one, (ii) two, (iii) three and (iv) four bedroom council properties in local authority areas in England and Wales in each of the last three years; and which councils had the (A) highest and (B) lowest waiting times. 
Dr. Stoate: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government pursuant to the answer of 18 December 2006, Official Report, column 1657W, on the sustainable communities plan, how much was allocated to each scheme in Kent Thameside that has received support from the Thames Gateway Growth Area Fund. 
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