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Appointment to the Youth Justice Board

The Secretary of State for Justice and Lord Chancellor (Mr. Jack Straw): I am today announcing with my right hon. Friend, the Secretary of State for Children, Schools and Families, the appointment of Frances Done CBE as Chair of the Youth Justice Board. The appointment will be for three years from 1 February 2008 to 1 February 2011.

The Youth Justice Board for England and Wales is an executive non-departmental public body established under the Crime and Disorder Act 1998 to monitor the operation and performance of the youth justice system and to identify and disseminate good practice to prevent offending by children and young people. The board is also responsible for commissioning services for young people under 18 who are sentenced and remanded to secure facilities.

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Transport Innovation Fund Pump-Priming and Development Funding

The Minister of State, Department for Transport (Ms Rosie Winterton): In July 2005 in a written statement to the House, local authorities were invited to bid for £18 million of “pump-priming” development funding to bring forward packages of schemes that combined better local public transport with hard demand management measures, such as road pricing. In November 2005 and May 2006 my predecessors announced that we were awarding pump-priming for the Transport Innovation Fund (TIF) to ten areas.

In December 2007 we invited local authorities developing TIF proposals to bid for a small amount of remaining funding available in the current financial year. This funding was targeted at those areas that have formally submitted proposals and are providing further information to support the assessment by the DfT and in parallel are developing elements of the proposal while waiting for a programme entry decision, or those that have submitted an outline proposal for a TIF package for which there is a political commitment to working up and submitting a business case during 2008-09.

I am today announcing funding for three areas. We are making up to £1 million available to Cambridgeshire, up to £1.5 million to Greater Manchester, and up to £675,000 to the West of England Partnership (covering Bristol City council, Bath and North East Somerset council, North Somerset council and South Gloucestershire councils).

This award means that these areas can continue to take forward proposals for improved public transport including local road pricing schemes.

I should be clear that receipt of this pump-priming funding is no guarantee that an authority will be successful in bidding for the main Transport Innovation Fund. We are, however, committed to working closely with the successful authorities to deliver the work programmes set out in their pump-priming bids and to support future decisions on the main Transport Innovation Fund.

We will also work with other local authorities developing proposals for improved local transport and demand management and this decision does not affect their ability to bid for substantive TIF funding in the future.

Manchester and Stansted Airport

The Secretary of State for Transport (Ruth Kelly): I am today publishing my decisions on whether Manchester and Stansted airports should remain designated for the purposes of price control under Section 40 of the Airports Act 1986. My decisions follow advice from the independent aviation regulator, the Civil Aviation Authority (CAA), on these airports and two public consultations. My Department’s analysis has also been peer reviewed by Professor Martin Cave, Director of the Centre for Management Under Regulation, at Warwick Business School, whose comments I am publishing alongside my decisions. My predecessor previously consulted on and
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announced new criteria for deciding whether an airport should be designated or not.

At Manchester, having carefully considered the responses from the consultation, I have concluded that Manchester airport does not have, and is not likely to acquire substantial market power. Therefore I intend to de-designate Manchester airport, and will introduce the necessary legislative changes.

At Stansted, the decision is more finely balanced. After careful consideration, I have concluded that Stansted meets all of the criteria for designation, and should continue to be designated.

The airports in the south-east are now operating at almost full capacity. This is bad for passengers in terms of delays, congestion, lack of choice, and it is also damaging to the UK’s productivity and growth. This is why we support a second runway at Stansted and are consulting on adding capacity at Heathrow, whilst satisfying strict local environmental conditions on
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noise and air quality. I am therefore asking the CAA to continue to protect passengers by setting price caps at Stansted until new capacity is delivered, or until further evidence emerges from the ongoing Competition Commission review.

In making my decision on Stansted, I am aware of the comments made by a number of the respondents on the costs of the current approach to price controls at Stansted. The structure of price controls is a matter for the regulator, but my decision is not intended to constrain the CAA from adopting other approaches which meet their statutory duties while avoiding some of the costs of the current system that respondents have identified.

I have today published on my Department’s website, decision letters setting out in full the rationale for my decisions, and Professor Cave’s peer review comments. Copies of these documents have been placed in the Libraries of the House.

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