|Previous Section||Index||Home Page|
Mr. Heald: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport pursuant to the answer of 1 March 2007, Official Report, column 1456W, on tolls, whether a (a) privacy impact assessment and (b) regulatory impact assessment has been produced on the implementation of EU Directive 2004/52/EC. 
Dr. Ladyman: A regulatory impact assessment has been produced and will be published on the Department for Transport website shortly. The parts of this directive that have been transposed into UK law are about technology and have no impact on privacy. The aspects of the Directive concerning the European Electronic Tolling Service, or EETS, have yet to be defined by the European Commission.
Chris Grayling: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport if he will place in the Library the most recent appraisal summary table for each road scheme in the targeted programme of improvements. 
Gillian Merron: The Department for Transport recognises that over-provision or poor design of signs and street furniture can lead to clutter. We therefore encourage local authorities to avoid unnecessary street clutter through our Local Transport Plan guidance and through the design guidance we provide. Guidance on minimising clutter is given in the Traffic Signs Manual and in the Streets for All guides produced with English Heritage.
We are strengthening our guidance in new publications such as the Manual for Streets, which will encourage a fresh approach to residential street design; good practice guidance on the use of pedestrian guardrails; and guidance on how to reduce the impact of traffic management measures on the street scene.
Lynne Jones: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what progress has been made on the provision of reasonable facilities for cyclists on board new railway and light rail and tram rolling stock and at stations. 
Mr. Tom Harris: The responsibility for the design of new rolling stock and the carriage of bikes on trains rests with individual train operating companies (TOCs). All TOCs currently carry folding bikes on trains at all times and the Government encourage TOCs to carry non-folding bikes whenever possible. Non-folding bikes are not carried on light rail services.
We also encourage all train operators to provide secure cycle parking at stations in 2004-05. DfT funded a Strategic Rail Authority project to provide an additional 2,500 cycle parking spaces with shelters and CCTV at over 100 stations as part of a project to improve cycle parking capacity on the rail network.
Gillian Merron: Guidance on the development and implementation of school travel plans was included in Travelling to School: a good practice guide, published by the Department for Transport in September 2003. Additional guidance is provided by school travel advisers and regional school travel advisers.
As part of the Travelling to School project, the Department for Transport and Department for Education and Skills are providing £7.5 million a year joint funding to local authorities to enable them to employ a network of around 250 school travel advisers, who work with schools to help them develop and implement school travel plans. The school travel advisers are supported by regional school travel advisers.
In addition, DfES is providing up to £20 million a year for small capital grants for schools with approved
school travel plans (£5,000 for a typical primary and £10,000 for a typical secondary school).
Mr. Dai Davies: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what assessment he has made of the comparative safety record of the operation of lightweight trams, light rail and buses in urban areas. 
For specific public transport schemes for which departmental funding is required, safety issues are also integral to the New Approach To Appraisal (NATA) process when assessing the benefits of the proposal.
Mr. Douglas Alexander: I have regular discussions with the First Minister on a range of issues. My right hon. Friend's Budget last week is a good Budget for Scotland and a good Budget for all of the UK. It tackles our long-term challenges and has been welcomed publicly by key Scottish industries.
8. Danny Alexander: To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland what recent discussions he has had with the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry on the future of the post office network in Scotland. 
15. John Barrett: To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland what recent discussions he has had with the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry on the future of the post office network in Scotland. 
David Cairns: The most recent data from the Office of National Statistics showed the economic activity rate to be 80.3 per cent.a record high. This means that not only are there more people in work in Scotland today than ever before, but also there are more people seeking to join the labour force.
Mr. Douglas Alexander: I have regular meetings with my right hon. Friend to discuss a range of issues. The Scottish economy is currently growing at above the long-term trend rate, record numbers of people are employed and more people are participating in the labour market than ever before.
Mr. Douglas Alexander: My right hon. Friend's decision to cut corporation tax directly addresses the concerns raised by the financial services sector when I have met them recently. Furthermore, recognising the significance of the sector in Scotland, the Chancellor invited me to join his high-level group on financial services. I am now currently working with the industry preparing a paper for the Chancellor's Group on what more can be done to support financial services in Scotland and win new investment and jobs.
David Cairns: Since 1997 employment in Scotland is up by over 246,000, long-term claimant unemployment is close to its lowest for 30 years and long-term youth unemployment has been significantly reduced.
Mr. Douglas Alexander: I have regular meetings with the First Minister where a range of issues are discussed. Scottish Executive data show that 2006 saw an annual increase in manufactured exportsthe first increase in five years.
Mr. Paice: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills what proportion of food served in (a) buildings occupied by his Department and (b) schools in England and Wales was of British origin in (i) 2005 and (ii) 2006. 
Miss McIntosh: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills what the commissioning process is for looked-after children services, with particular reference to the length of contract and conditions for renewal; what the conditions for the tendering process are; and if he will make a statement. 
Mr. Dhanda: The Department does not mandate a single commissioning process for looked-after children services. Each top tier local authority operates a commissioning process in accordance with their standing orders, any relevant European procurement requirements and their obligations in the Children Act 1989. Issues such as length of contract, conditions for renewal and tendering processes are therefore at local authority discretion.
The Department has, however, taken steps to support better commissioning across the whole of children's services. These include publishing the Joint Planning and Commissioning Framework for Children, Young People and Maternity Services, supporting a working group led by local authorities and provider organisations developing standardised national contracts for independent and non-maintained special schools and residential care, and developing children in care regional commissioning pilots, which will support local authorities by making available a choice of placements for each child, leaving final decisions about individual placements in the hands of social workers, in discussion with children themselves.
Mr. Paul Goodman: To ask the Secretary of State for Education and Skills how many (a) private, voluntary and independent and (b) state sector child care places closed in each year since 1997. 
|Table 1: Number of child care plac es that have closed 2004- 06, England|
|2003/04||2004/05||2005/06||March to December 2006|
| Source: Ofsted.|
Ofsted data on closures include registered places in settings which are transferring ownership, and in settings which move from one Ofsted category to another, not just in those which are ceasing trading.
|Table 2: Number of child care places that have opened 2004-06, England|
|2003/04||2004/05||2005/06||March to December 2006|
| Source: Ofsted.|
Ofsted has also produced figures on the numbers of registered child care providers and places on a quarterly basis from March 2003. Its latest figures were published in its report Registered Childcare Providers and Places, December 2006, which is available on its website, www.Ofsted.gov.uk/.
|Next Section||Index||Home Page|