The Chief Secretary to the Treasury (Mr. Stephen Timms): I am pleased to announce that a total of 24 bids from organisations spanning the public and third sectors have been awarded funding for projects following the ninth bidding round of the Invest to Save Budget. A total of £9 million has been allocated over the three years to 2009-10 for England. The allocated sum rises to £11 million to include consequential funding for the devolved Administrations. Details of the winning projects have been placed in the Library of the House.
The Invest to Save Budget (ISB), set up following the 1998 Comprehensive Spending Review, provides initial funding support for projects that increase the extent of joint working between different parts of the public sector; identify innovative ways of delivering public services; and reduce the cost of delivering the services and/or improve the quality and effectiveness of services delivered to the public.
This ninth bidding round was focused on supporting innovative approaches to the delivery of local services by third sector organisations. The intention was to encourage local authorities to work in partnership with local third sector organisations to deliver services in line with local needs and priorities.
The Third Sector's role in delivering public services and building fairer Communitiesprojects that deliver cash releasing efficiencies; and projects that address the priorities set out in their Local Area Agreement and support their Community Strategyprojects that are additional to those already funded by statutory bodies and which address recognised gaps in local service provision.
Successful projects are required to agree a detailed implementation plan, setting out how the project will be delivered. Each project must also provide six-monthly progress reports to sponsor departments and the Treasury and carry out an evaluation of the project's success once it has been completed. Wider dissemination of the good practice from completed projects is then fed back into the whole spectrum of public service providers.
More information can be found on the ISB website at www.isb.gov.uk
The Minister for Science and Innovation (Malcolm Wicks): I have tasked the UK Intellectual Property Office with managing and shaping an intellectual property system that encourages innovation and creativity, balances the needs of rights holders and the public, promotes strong and competitive markets and provides a firm foundation for the knowledge-based economy.
Issue 90 per cent. of patent search reports within four months of request.
Grant 90 per cent. of patents within two and a half years of request.
To register 90 per cent. of processed trade mark applications, to which no substantive objections have been raised or oppositions filed, within eight months of application.
To examine 95 per cent. of all design applications within three months.
To resolve 55 per cent. of trade mark disputes in one year(*).
To receive an overall good or satisfactory rating in at least 80 per cent. of responses in customer and ministerial surveys.
The number of businesses taking action to improve the management of their IP will increase by 20 per cent. above baseline in targeted groups.
Meet 80 per cent. of agreed milestones in development of policy initiatives.
Generate a 10 per cent. increase in demand for non-statutory innovation support services.
Develop six target profiles, using Telpat intelligence.
Achieve the target of 4 per cent. on return on capital employed.
Reduce total current expenditure on the operations of the trading fund compared with the baseline of the corporate plan 2004-05, in line with the DTIs published Efficiency Technical Note. Cumulative savings target for 2005-06, 2006-07 and 2007-08 is £2.7 million.
Achieve positive outcomes on 100 per cent. of ISO and Charter Mark healthchecks.
Make the correct decision on registerability in at least 98.5 per cent. of trade mark applications.
Give good customer service in patent search and examination in 95 per cent. of quality assured cases.
Reduce number of days sick absence per person to:
9 days by March 2008
8.5 days by March 2009
8 days by March 2010
Complete, sign off and return 100 per cent. of performance measurement forms to personnel by 31 May 2008
95% by 31 May 2007
100% by 31 May 2008
To achieve 99 per cent. or more of the agreed monthly service levels for key IT systems.
Some 80 per cent. or more of internal customers are satisfied or very satisfied with the provision of internal IT customer services.
Apply for initial assessment of our environmental management system by the ISO accreditation body by the end of March 2008.
Achieve a minimum of 75 per cent. No actions required recommendations in follow up internal audit reports where initial recommendations were Necessary Actions Required or Urgent Actions Required.
Some 80 per cent. of completed TREFs to contain positive feedback from line manager on the improved competences of staff.
To achieve 80 per cent. or more of agreed milestones for key projects within the reporting year.
Ensure that applications from black and minority ethnic people are running at 5 per cent. of applications for A-B1 level posts by end March 2008.
(*)this target is intended to have a second element to have disposed of at least 98 per cent. of disputes within three years, from the third year of this target, ie 2008-09