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Mr. Andrew Smith: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government (1) if she will assess the effects on local authorities of the legislative framework for meeting the needs of unaccompanied asylum-seeking children; 
The Department collects statistical information on an annual basis concerned with all children looked after by local authorities; including children who enter care because they are unaccompanied asylum seekers (UASC) with no adult in this country able to take responsibility for their care. The DCSF manages the UASC Leaving Care Costs Grant, which is intended to provide assistance for local authorities towards meeting the leaving care costs of supporting unaccompanied asylum seeker children.
Paul Rowen: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what discussions she has had with Rochdale metropolitan borough council on the planning application to re-open Ding quarry and the associated environmental impact assessment. 
Mr. Iain Wright: My right hon. Friend the Secretary of State would not discuss the application for new operating conditions for Ding quarry in view of her quasi-judicial role in relation to any appeal which might be submitted in the future. The Department has offered informal and general advice to Rochdale metropolitan borough council about the procedure and timescale for applying environmental impact assessment to reviews of mineral permissions for dormant quarries and also about the mineral permission review legislation as it applies to dormant quarries.
Paul Rowen: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what consideration she has given to the compatibility of existing planning permissions for dormant quarries and planning and environment law. 
Mr. Iain Wright:
Planning permissions for active and dormant quarries are compatible with current planning and environment law. However, mineral permissions do differ from other planning permissions in that many
were granted just after the Second World War and they can involve continuous development over many years, and sometimes decades. As with other planning permissions, mineral consents and permissions are property rights which cannot, in general, be taken away with without compensation. The Planning and Compensation Act 1991 and the Environment Act 1995 introduced legislation to initially review old mineral permissions granted before 22 February 1982 and then periodically review, at 15 year intervals, all mineral permissions to ensure that operations are in accordance with conditions which reflect the most up to date environmental standards. In 2000, regulations were introduced applying environmental impact assessment to reviews of mineral permissions where the remaining development is likely to have significant effects on the environment.
Paul Rowen: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what recent discussions (a) she and (b) her officials have had with quarry owners on re-opening dormant quarries. 
Paul Rowen: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government how many (a) local authority and (b) housing association socially rented houses were built in each (i) region and (ii) local authority area in each year from 1997 to 2006. 
Mr. Iain Wright [holding answer 26 November 2007]: The following table shows the number of local authority and registered social landlord new build social rent houses for each year from 1996-97 to 2005-06, by region.
Housing Corporation and returns from local authorities
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