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Mr. Pickles: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what representations she has received from local authorities on the manner in which migrant numbers are calculated for the purposes of local government funding; and if she will make a statement. 
The Department for Communities and Local Government uses sub-national population projections and the mid-year estimates that are published by the Office for National Statistics (ONS). These statistics take into account changes in the population through natural change (births and deaths) and internal migration (movements between local authorities) as well as international migration.
Mr. Stewart Jackson: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government whether she plans to take into account the costs since 2004 of interpretation and translation services for local authorities in the eastern region when considering future grant settlements for those authorities; and if she will make a statement. 
Andrew Stunell: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what representations she has received on the time taken to receive planning approval by (a) manufacturers who wish to extend current factory premises or open a new manufacturing site and (b) mineral operators who wish to extend a currently active quarrying operation; and if she will make a statement. 
Yvette Cooper: The Secretary of State receives representations on a large number of topics, including planning procedure. Complaint about delaywhether caused by poor performance by local authorities, procedure or poor quality applicationswas one of the reasons we undertook a major overhaul of the planning system. More recently, the Planning White Paper reports that our reforms have already brought substantial improvements in the performance of local planning authorities in deciding applications within target time scales.
The White Paper sets out further measures which will improve the handling of planning applications. Planning performance agreements will enable planning authority and developer to agree in advance a timetable and the requirements for achievement of each phase of processing a major application, avoiding unnecessary delay.
Mr. Pickles: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government whether the proposed infrastructure planning commission will have the remit to consider planning applications for (a) large-scale housing developments, (b) incinerators, (c) sewage plants, (d) wind farm sites and (e) landfill sites. 
Yvette Cooper: Paragraphs 5.4 to 5.12 of the White Paper Planning for a Sustainable Future (cm 7120), explain that the proposed infrastructure planning commission would deal with development consent applications for nationally significant transport, water, wastewater and waste infrastructure in England, and energy infrastructure in England and Wales. Local planning authorities will continue to consider the non-nationally significant applications in these sectors that they currently consider. The White Paper does not propose that the infrastructure planning commission would consider any development consent applications for large-scale housing developments.
Mr. Yeo: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what proportion of contaminated land was restored to (a) domestic, (b) commercial and (c) amenity use in the last (i) five and (ii) 10 years. 
Information on what land is used for after remediation is not collected centrally by my Department. The Environment Agencys 2002 State of Contaminated Land Report, prepared under Part IIA of the Environmental Protection Act 1990, sets out available data on the identification and response to contaminated
land dealt with under the Contaminated Land Regime (Part 2A). A further report is expected to be produced later this year, but will not include information on land cleaned up under the planning regime for future use.
Mr. Woolas: The Valuation Office Agency (VOA) is promoting the benefits of the Valuebill data exchange process within the recent initiative to develop closer working relationships with its local authority partners to make it more efficient. As well as implementing the latest Valuebill exchange standard, the VOA provides a validation service for local authority IT suppliers on similar developments.
Margaret Moran: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what estimate she has made of the number of (a) local authority and (b) registered social landlord properties sub-let to private renters. 
Secure tenants of local authorities are prohibited by law from subletting the property to private renters or to anyone else. Tenants with assured periodic tenancies of Registered Social Landlords are also prohibited by law from sub-letting the property except with the consent of the landlord.
Mrs. Lait: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what plans she has to use her powers under part III of schedule 4 to the Local Government and Housing Act 1989 to issue directions in respect of areas of social housing estates which are deemed to serve the wider community. 
Yvette Cooper: The Secretary of State has no plans to use powers under part III of schedule 4 of the Local Government and Housing Act 1989, but would consider any applications for appropriate directions on a case-by-case basis.
Mr. Pickles: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what proportion of local government revenue expenditure was financed by specific grants in each year since 1997-98; and what the estimated figure is for 2007-08. 
Mr. Woolas: The percentage of local government revenue expenditure financed by specific grants in England in each year since 1997-98 and the estimated figures for 2006-07 and 2007-08 are tabled as follows.
The table is produced on a non-Financial Reporting Standard (FRS 17) basis to 2003-04 and on an FRS 17 basis from 2003-04 onwards. The main implication is
that the costs of entitlements to retirement benefits (pensions) in FRS 17 are accounted for in the year in which employment gives rise to the entitlement, rather than the year in which cash payments of contributions or pensions take place. On an FRS 17 basis, revenue expenditure is now financed by appropriations from pension reserves, in addition to appropriations from other reserves, revenue support grant, redistributed non-domestic rates, police grant and council tax.
The large change in specific grant from 2006-07 onwards is largely due to changes in the way the expenditure on schools is funded. Local authorities now receive dedicated schools grant, included in specific grants, replacing funding previously included in formula grant.
The definition of local government revenue expenditure used here is expenditure funded from aggregate external finance (AEF), council tax and authorities reserves. AEF is central Government revenue funding that comprises formula grant (revenue support grant, redistributed business rates and police grant), general Greater London authority (GLA) grant and specific grants inside AEF, i.e. revenue grants paid for councils core services. The specific grants used here are the specific grants inside AEF. Comparisons across years may not be valid owing to changing local authority responsibilities.
|Local government revenue expenditure financed by specific grants in England|
Revenue Summary (RS) returns to 2005-06 and Revenue Accounts (RA) budget returns for 2006-07 and 2007-08. The outturn information for 2006-07 is not yet available. Specific grants include GLA Transport Grant.
Margaret Moran: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what the (a) average and (b) longest time taken by her Department to reply to hon. Members correspondence was in each of the last three years. 
Angela E. Smith: The Cabinet Office, on an annual basis, publishes a report to Parliament on the performance of Departments in replying to Members and Peers correspondence. The report for 2006 was published on 28 March 2007, Official Report, columns 101-04WS. Reports for earlier years are available in the Library of the House.
Information on the average time taken to reply to hon. Members correspondence is not held centrally and could be provided only at disproportionate cost. The longest time taken by the Department to reply to hon. Members correspondence in each of the last three years is 188 days in 2004; 173 days in 2005; and 295 days in 2006.
Mr. Curry: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government how many licence applications have been received by local authorities in England under the provisions of the Housing Act 2004 for mandatory licensing of houses in multiple occupation; and what percentage this represents of the properties subject to mandatory licensing under the Act. 
Yvette Cooper [holding answer 21 June 2007]: The collection of data on licence applications received by local authorities in England for the mandatory licensing of houses in multiple occupation is still in progress. The Department will release these figures when they are available.
Mr. Curry: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government if she will review the effect of paragraph 2(2), Schedule 3 of the Licensing and Management of Houses in Multiple Occupation and Other Housing Miscellaneous Provisions (England) Regulations 2006. 
Yvette Cooper [holding answer 21 June 2007]: The Department is committed to reviewing the operation of licensing of Houses in Multiple Occupation, including the provisions in paragraph (2) (2) of schedule 3 of Statutory Instrument 373 The Licensing and Management of Houses in Multiple Occupation and Other Houses (Miscellaneous Provisions) (England) Regulations 2006. We are currently discussing these with stakeholders.
Mr. Stewart Jackson: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government how many houses in multiple occupation there were in the Peterborough City Council area in each year since 1997; and if she will make a statement. 
Yvette Cooper [holding answer 19 June 2007]: The number of Houses in Multiple Occupation (HMOs) in local authority areas has been collected by the Department through the Housing Strategy Statistical Appendix (HSSA) since 2001. The Department does not hold data on the number of HMOs in local authority areas prior to this date. The following table details the number of HMOs in the city of Peterborough since 2001.
|Housing strategy statistical data|
|Number of HMOs|
Peterborough City Council
Michael Gove: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government how many notices of appeal the Valuation Office Agency has received in relation to the 2005 business rates revaluation in each year since the ratings list for the 2005 revaluation was published. 
Mr. Pickles: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government pursuant to the answer to the hon. Member for Meriden (Mrs. Spelman) of 27 March 2007, Official Report, column 1419W, and 15 January 2007, Official Report, column 848W, on business rate valuations, whether the explanatory work has been completed; and what conclusions have been reached on the feasibility of using automated valuation modelling for business rate valuations. 
Mr. Woolas: The first phase in a two-phase feasibility study on the potential contribution of automated valuation modelling (AVM) in support of the forthcoming 2010 non-domestic revaluation concludes that an AVM is capable of supporting the revaluation of certain classes of property by providing:
1. Provisional valuation matrices.
2. Exception reports to assist in the review and validation of rental information.
3. Market analysis, including the development of market derived trending indices.
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