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20 Apr 2007 : Column 790Wcontinued
Anne Snelgrove: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government which local authorities make an additional charge on council house rents to pay for street wardens. 
Yvette Cooper: We do not collect information centrally on local authority funding for particular warden schemes.
Ms Buck: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government how many homes she expects to be upgraded in Westminster under the Decent Homes Initiative over the life of the programme; and how much she expects the Government to have spent on the programme over its lifetime. 
Yvette Cooper: In the City of Westminster there are 12,407 homes owned by the local authority and managed by City West Homes the Councils arms length management organisation. The Government have allocated £74 million in supported capital expenditure to City West Homes between 2002 and 2006 for its decent homes programme.
Local authorities started reporting on decent homes in 2002. Between 2002 and 2006 the number of non-decent council homes in Westminster was reduced by 9,665. At 1 April 2006 there were still 1,182 non-decent council homes. Data by local authority for registered social landlords (RSLs) have only been collected since 2005. Between 2005 and 2006 the number of non-decent RSL homes was reduced by 167. At 1 April 2006 there were still 1,706 non-decent RSL homes.
The decent homes programme also covers non decent homes in the private sector occupied by vulnerable households but we do not hold these data at the local authority level.
The cost per house of meeting the decent homes standard varies across the country and the Department does not collect those figures separately. Some local authorities are refurbishing the houses in their area significantly above the decent homes standard. What the improved standard is and how it will be achieved will be determined by local circumstances and the level of resources that can be brought to the programme locally. The Government expect over £31 billion to be spent on refurbishing council homes by 2010, this includes local authorities own investment and raising houses above the decent homes standard.
Andrew Stunell: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government how much her Department and its predecessor spent on (a) consultants and (b) advertising in (i) 2004-05 and (ii) 2005-06. 
Angela E. Smith: In respect of the spend on consultants I refer the hon. Member to the answer given by Baroness Andrews to Lord Smith of Clifton on 18 May 2006, Official Report, column WA61.
|The spend on advertising in 2004-05 and 2005-06|
Mr. Pickles: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what the estimated total budget is of the Home Condition Report database. 
Yvette Cooper: The Home Condition Report Register is provided under a concession agreement so there is no cost to Communities and Local Government.
Mr. Pickles: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government (1) how many individuals have completed a sale to part-own or own their social home under the Social Homebuy scheme; 
(2) how many (a) housing associations and (b) local authorities are offering the Social Homebuy scheme. 
Yvette Cooper: 33 Social Homebuy sales were completed up to the end of February 2007 and there are 575 applications in the pipeline. The sales are mainly from the four first housing association pilots.
41 housing associations and two local authorities have now begun offering the scheme to their tenants as part of the Social Homebuy pilot. We expect a further 37 housing associations and six more local authorities to do so by April 2007.
Mr. Burstow: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what estimate she has made of the percentage of private homes in (a) England and (b) each region which have carbon monoxide levels higher than those deemed safe by the World Health Organisation. 
Angela E. Smith: While data are collected for carbon monoxide emissions and carbon monoxide related fatalities, no statistics are routinely collected about carbon monoxide levels in homes.
Mr. Willetts: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what projections the Government have made of the future net financial position of housing revenue authorities over the next five years on the basis of current policy. 
Yvette Cooper [holding answer 19 March 2007]: This Department does not make forecasts of future net financial positions on a local authority basis.
Mr. Austin Mitchell: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what estimate she has made of the cost of providing new houses for key workers by (a) purchase assistance, (b) purchase from housing associations and (c) construction of (i) social housing and (ii) council housing. 
Yvette Cooper: The Government offer specific housing assistance to key workers in areas experiencing problems of recruitment and retention difficulties under the key worker living (KWL) scheme. The scheme operates in London, the south east and east of England. Key worker living funding is divided between Open Market HomeBuy (equity loans to purchase properties on the open market) and new build products such as New Build HomeBuy (shared ownership of newly built homes) and intermediate rent (where the rent is set at a level between that charged by social and private landlords).
On 2 October 2006 Open Market HomeBuy was re-launched in partnership with four mortgage lenders. Half of the equity loan is provided by Government and half by the mortgage lender. This reduces the level of public sector subsidy required making it possible to help more people into different forms of shared ownership. The average grant per unit for key worker Open Market HomeBuy completions in the current financial year prior to the re-launch of the product was £39,687. Currently the average grant rate per unit for key workers that have purchased under the new Expanded Open Market HomeBuy product is £26,762.
The estimated average grant per unit for New Build HomeBuy properties in the three key worker living regions under the national affordable housing programme for 2006-2008 is £34,623.
We do not collect data on key worker access to social rented properties. The average cost of providing a social rented unit nationally was £133,941 of which £62,000 was the average public subsidy in the form of grant. Statistics are not collected on the construction costs specifically of new council housing.
Mr. Drew: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what plans she has to bring forward proposals to establish a common definition of community land trust in statute law. 
Yvette Cooper: The Department is currently examining what further action may be required to facilitate development of the community land trust model.
Anne Milton: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what assessment her Department has made of the effect of Planning Policy Statement 3 on the number of dwellings that will be built on greenfield sites in the south-east. 
Yvette Cooper: No specific assessment has been made of the effect of Planning Policy Statement 3: Housing on the numbers of dwellings likely to be built on greenfield sites in the south-east. This will depend on the decisions of local planning authorities in identifying suitable locations for housing to meet the needs of households in their areas, as well as their wider planning policies, especially in relation to the density of housing development.
PPS3 gives local planning authorities the tools and flexibilities they need to ensure that priority is given to the development of brownfield sites, including by taking stronger action to bring more brownfield land back into use, by setting targets and trajectories for brownfield development which reflect local circumstances, and by managing the release of land over time to deliver against those targets and trajectories.
Anne Milton: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government how many new homes in the south-east were built on windfall sites in each year between 2001 and 2006. 
Yvette Cooper: This information is not held by the department.
Mr. Pickles: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what the timetable is for the collation of data for the next English Housing Survey. 
Yvette Cooper: The Department currently conducts two continuous housing surveys: the Survey of English Housing and the English House Condition Survey. However, these are to be merged into a single survey, the English Housing Survey, which will start in April 2008 with fieldwork conducted throughout the year.
The proposed timetable for the publication of annual reports from the existing surveys is:
|Survey of English Housing|
|Report for the year||Date of publication|
English House Condition Survey annual reports are published every May. The report for 2005 will be published in May 2007.
The timetable for publishing outputs from the new English Housing Survey has not been finalised. Some preliminary reports based on the first survey year (2008-09) may be published towards the end of 2009.
Mr. Pickles: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government whether her Department is (a) gathering and (b) compiling data on individual homes for its housing surveys. 
Yvette Cooper: The Department conducts two continuous housing surveys, the Survey of English Housing and the English House Condition Survey. Both are sample surveys that involve interviewing households at randomly selected addresses in England. Property inspections are also conducted as part of the English House Condition Survey.
In accordance with the National Statistics Code of Practice, no information is published that would enable individuals or their addresses to be identified. Moreover, the identities of participating households are anonymous; and their addresses are known only to the survey teams.
David Howarth: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government when she expects to make available to local authorities that part of this years local authority Business Growth Initiative awards which has been withheld; and what assessment she has made of the impact on local authority budgets of the withholding of those awards. 
Mr. Woolas: As we have previously announced, in the three years to 2007-08 local authorities will receive up to £l billion through the Local Authority Business Growth Initiative. We have abolished the ceiling but due to judicial reviews brought by Corby and Slough borough councils, this year payments have been scaled back to 70 per cent. of their value to protect the important incentive this scheme creates for authorities both in this year and next year. Authorities received £316 million this year which is more than two and a half times the £126 million of grant paid last year and 50 more authorities received LABGI grant this year than last.
There is therefore a detrimental effect on local authorities due to the action of Slough and Corby councils. I have made no assessment of this impact.
Lembit Öpik: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government (1) whether, under Planning Policy Statement 3, open land associated with an airfield and used for recreational aviation will be potentially subject to development; and if she will make a statement; 
(2) whether, under Planning Policy Statement 3, the Government have changed their policy on the protection of airfields from development; and if she will make a statement. 
Yvette Cooper: I refer the hon. Member to the answer given to the hon. Member for Ashford (Damian Green) on 19 February 2007, Official Report , column 500W.
Bob Russell: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government pursuant to the answer of 12 March 2007, Official Report, columns 152-3W, on public footpaths, whether the requirements placed on local planning authorities in respect of changes to rights of way also apply in respect of the proposed creation of new public footpaths, cycleways and bridle paths. 
Yvette Cooper: The proposed creation of new public footpaths and bridleways is covered by the Public Paths Orders Regulations 1993, as set out in the answer given to the hon. Member for Colchester on 12 March 2007, Official Report, column 152-3W.
There are three ways of creating new cycle tracks:
(a) New cycle tracks can be created under powers in section 24(2) of the Highways Act 1980. Planning permission is usually required for this.
(b) Cycle tracks can be created by converting an existing footpath, or part of a footpath, by an order made under the Cycle Tracks Act 1984, to which the Cycle Tracks Regulations 1984 apply. These require consultation with one or more organisations representing persons using the footpath, any local authority, parish council or community council whose area the footpath is situated, statutory undertakers and the local police.
(c) Cycle tracks can also be created by converting part of the footway (the pavement adjacent to a road) by an order under the Highways Act 1980. There are no statutory procedures for footway conversions, but proposals are advertised by site notices and notices in local newspapers, following the appropriate council resolution.
Advice on the conversion of footpaths and footways is contained in Local Transport Note 2/86 Shared Use by Cyclists and Pedestrians and advice on the establishment of new cycle tracks is to be found in Local Transport Note 1/89 Making Way for Cyclists, which also provides advice on footway conversion notices.
Martin Horwood: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government how many regional assemblies are reviewing their social, economic and environmental partners membership; and at what cost. 
Yvette Cooper: Regional assemblies as voluntary bodies decide their own composition so long as a minimum of 30 per cent. of their members represent social, economic and environmental partners as set down in their letters of designation. Regional assemblies will review their membership following local government elections each year. The south west and east of England regional assemblies are currently undertaking a review of their regional stakeholder members. This is being undertaken in the ordinary course of business at no additional cost.
The Yorkshire and Humber assembly has recently commissioned a study into the role of social, economic and environmental partners, with the aim of ensuring that all partners are supported in helping deliver the broad objectives agreed by the region. The total cost of the work is £7,900.
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