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Mrs. Spelman: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what assessment she has made of the effect of (a) discretionary and (b) mandatory licensing of houses of multiple occupation on the (i) buy-to-let and (ii) housing market. 
Ruth Kelly: The Building Research Establishment (BRE) was commissioned to undertake a baseline survey on Houses in Multiple Occupation prior to licensing. This will be published shortly. BRE have also been commissioned to conduct a follow up study on the practical implication, effectiveness and impact of mandatory and discretionary licensing and this research is due to commence in early 2008.
Mr. Dai Davies: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what steps she plans to take to improve parliamentary scrutiny of national planning policy statements following paragraph 1.44 of the planning white paper, Cm 7120. 
Yvette Cooper: Paragraphs 3.27 and 3.28 of the White Paper Planning for a Sustainable Future (Cm 7120), explain that as Ministers would no longer be taking decisions on individual applications, it believes that draft national policy statements should be subject to parliamentary scrutiny, and that further work is needed to identify the most appropriate mechanism for ensuring parliamentary scrutiny. The White Paper consults on what mechanisms might ensure appropriate parliamentary scrutiny.
Dr. Stoate: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government (1) what steps her Department is taking to support the development of a landowner and developer tariff for infrastructure delivery in growth areas as an interim measure pending the introduction of the proposed Planning Gain Supplement; 
(2) what assessment her Department has made of the effectiveness of existing landowner and developer tariff schemes as a means of capturing land value and securing funds for infrastructural development; 
Yvette Cooper: Communities and Local Government does not use a definition for landowner and developer tariffs. In practice landowner and developer tariffs are planning obligations negotiated between the landowner, developer and the local planning authority under section 106 of the Town and Country Planning Act 1990 as amended by section 12 of the Planning and Compensation Act 1991.
(i) they have submitted a bid for funding from the Growth Area Fund towards studies underpinning the schemes,
(ii) our costs contribute to specific infrastructure projects in the Growth Areas which meet our strategic objectives, and;
(iii) through advice and expertise provided via English Partnerships.
For example, in Kent Thameside, Communities and Local Government has been working in partnership with Local Planning Authorities, Kent County Council, Highways Agency and Department for Transport to develop a solution enabling local and regional transport infrastructure to support development aspirations.
Mr. Dai Davies: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what arrangements are in place for taking account of the views of Ministers in the devolved administrations in decisions on the Planning Policy Commission, where those decisions potentially have an impact on Wales, Scotland or Northern Ireland. 
Yvette Cooper: Chapter 10 of Planning for a Sustainable Future (cm 7120) explains that decisions on major energy infrastructure projects in Wales presently made by the Secretary of State for Trade and Industry would be transferred to the independent planning commission. Decisions on all other major infrastructure projects would continue to be made within Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.
The Government will also work with Scotland and Wales to put in place effective arrangements for any
cross border projects which need to be jointly determined by the commission and Scottish or Welsh Ministers.
Michael Gove: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what representations her Department has received from the Federation of Master Builders on the proposals in the Planning White Paper to amend the planning regime for household extensions. 
Mr. Sanders: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government how much financial support was made available for urban search and rescue teams in each fire authority area in each financial year for which support was made available. 
Angela E. Smith: Communities and Local Government (CLG) has provided financial support direct to fire and rescue authorities (FRAs) to assist urban search and rescue (USAR) teams through grants under section 31 of the Local Government Act 2003. Details of all these grants are published in Fire Service Circulars. The following table summarises this funding, the amounts provided to individual FRAs and the financial year they were paid.
Government have also funded over £8.7 million in new USAR training facilities at the Fire Service College to enable USAR teams to undertake generic and specialist training. To date over £6.8 million has been spent on training courses for USAR technicians primarily at the college.
Other funding, paying for the initial purchase and maintenance of equipment hosted by the USAR teams, has been undertaken collectively with other New Dimension assets and it is not possible to separate out the USAR costs in isolation.
|S31 grant funding paid to FRAs in support of USAR teams|
|Fire authorities||Crewing and training (resource)||Crewing (resource)||PPE (capital)||Accommodation (capital)|
|Fire authorities||PPE (resource)||Accommodation (capital)||Timber (resource)||Local training facilities (capital)||Crewing (resource)|
1. Crewing Grants were provided to cover the employment costs of crewing the USAR teams.
2. PPE Grants were for the provision and maintenance of personal protective equipment for USAR technicians.
3. Accommodation Grants were given to cover the costs associated with housing USAR equipment at fire stations.
4. The Timber Grant covered the cost of replenishing wood required for shoring.
5. The Local Training Facilities Grant was for the purchase of a training rig to allow USAR teams to undertake maintenance of skills training at their own fire stations.
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