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Mrs. Dunwoody: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government how many shared services are operated by her Department; and what the timetable is for the implementation of new shared services by (a) her Department and (b) its agencies. 
Mr. Dhanda: Communities and Local Government operates three shared services. It provides the internal audit services for a range of other Departments, agencies and NDPBs including DCMS and the Cabinet Office. It has a finance shared service that covers a number of other Government Departments and agencies including DFT and MOJ and provides records management and library and information services to DFT.
As part of a programme of continuous improvement in corporate services, the Department continues to assess opportunities for driving further efficiency and effectiveness through shared services with the Government office network, agencies and NDPBs.
To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government if she will take
steps to reduce the number of hard copies of emails printed by officials in her Department. 
only print e-mails and documents when absolutely necessary;
introduction of new multi-functional devices (MFD's) where print software automatically defaults to duplex printing and/or print more than one page per sheet;
use scrap or used paper in place of post it notes where practical; and
make greater use of computer applications for reviewing and commenting on draft documents.
Mr. Hoban: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government pursuant to the Answer of 21 January 2008, Official Report, column 1525W, on departmental marketing, for how long display boards with the names and photographs of Ministers have been present in the foyers of her Departments two main central London buildings. 
|n/k = not known|
1. Figures include paper, light cardboard and confidential waste but not heavy cardboard which is baled and recycled separately
2. Figures do not include data from the regional Government offices.
Mr. Dhanda: During the consultation for the 2008-09 to 2010-11 Local Government Finance settlement, the Department received two representations, both from the authority, regarding funding for Devon and Somerset Fire and Rescue Authority.
Since the consultation deadline of 8 January 2008, the Department has received three further letters regarding funding for Devon and Somerset FRA, one from the authority and two from hon. Members. The main issue in all these representations relates to the changes to the funding of the firefighter pension scheme that occurred in the 2006-07 settlement.
Nick Harvey: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government if she will assess the impact of the proposed grant settlement for Devon and Somerset Fire Service for 2008-09 on fire service cover and public safety in Ilfracombe. 
Fire and Rescue Authorities are required by the Fire and Rescue National Framework to have in place and maintain an Integrated Risk Management Plan (IRMP) which reflects local need and sets out plans to tackle effectively both existing and potential risks to communities. The IRMP process is about developing local and flexible plans to manage the risks of fire and all kinds of other emergencies, based on up to date local evidence, which will provide communities with a better targeted service and improved value for money. Each authority is responsible for determining its policies and standards for prevention and intervention in the light of the risks identified.
Nick Harvey: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government if she will assess the impact of changes to fire-fighters pensions on Devon and Somerset Fire and Rescue Service as compared to other fire services. 
The new financing arrangements for firefighters pensions were designed to counter the yearly volatility in pension expenditure and to ensure authorities budgets reflect the cost of providing their services. The benefits should be judged over a period, not just a single year. All fire and rescue authorities have been provided with pensions top-up grant to cover
deficits in their pension funds in 2006-07 and 2007-08. The deficits are expected to increase over the next three years with corresponding increases in grant.
The New Firefighters Pension Scheme 2006 was designed to ensure the affordability of special pension arrangements for firefighters while aiding recruitment and retention. The admission of retained firefighters, who had been excluded from the 1992 Firefighters Pension Scheme, was designed to ensure equal treatment with regular firefighters. Although the 1992 and 2006 schemes are national, they are administered locally by fire and rescue authorities, who will interpret their application to the circumstances of individual firefighters. This makes a valid comparison between authorities difficult to achieve.
Grant Shapps: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what research the Audit Commission (a) has undertaken and (b) is planning to undertake into the accuracy of the electoral register. 
Parliamentary Question on what research the Audit Commission (a) has undertaken and (b) is planning to undertake into the accuracy of the electoral register.
Your Parliamentary Question on what research the Audit Commission (a) has undertaken and (b) is planning to undertake into the accuracy of the electoral register has been passed to me for reply.
The Audit Commission has not undertaken, and is not planning to undertake, any research into the accuracy of the electoral register as it does not have the powers to do so. The electoral register is available publicly, and can be challenged, which is how it is policed.
A copy of this letter will be placed in the House of Commons Library.
Mr. Dhanda: The business case for the FiReControl project is a constantly evolving document. Ministers review each version of the business case before its publication and the latest version is 1.0. that was published in June 2007.
The scale and nature of incidents that the Fire and Rescue Service is called upon to respond to has increased over recent years. Climate change, which leads to extreme weather events, and terrorism are already major threats. Planning for the future must reflect this reality: a strategy for replacing current controls is essential and has an important part to play in building resilience; doing nothing is not an option if the public is to be better protected. Accordingly, the
Government have taken the lead in achieving this through a collaborative project with the Fire and Rescue ServiceFiReControl.
Bob Russell: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what the original projected cost was of the East of England regional fire control centre; and what the most recent projected cost is. 
Mr. Dhanda: The contracted annual rental for the East of England Regional Fire Control Centre is £1,349,322.00 uplifted by 2.5 per cent. inflation per year, applied every five years. This annual rental figure remains unchanged from when the contract was entered on 8 August 2005.
Bob Russell: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government when work was originally planned to start on the East of England regional fire control centre; when she now expects work to (a) start and (b) finish; and if she will make a statement. 
Bob Russell: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government on what date the site of the proposed East of England Regional Fire Control Centre was purchased; from whom it was purchased; how much it cost; and where it is located. 
Mr. Dhanda: The East of England Regional Control Centre is located at Cambridge Research Park; Plot 5100, Beach Drive, Waterbeach, Cambridgeshire, CB25 9AP. The site is privately owned and it has never been owned by Communities and Local Government.
Bob Russell: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government how many firefighters retired through ill health and were entitled to ill health retirement and a pension in each of the 10 years prior to the 2004 amendment to the Firefighters Pension Scheme; and how many were entitled in each subsequent year. 
|Ill-health retirements||All retirement|
HMFSI annual reports and annual returns to DCLG
Mr. Pickles: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government who is responsible for auditing the expenditure (a) in the six area trial for home information packs (HIPs) and (b) the funding for the energy performance certificates to be included in HIPs ordered prior to 1 August. 
Mr. Stephen O'Brien: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what assessment she has made of the use of home information packs by estate agents in England since inception. 
Caroline Flint: Our monitoring arrangements do not capture specific data on the use made of home information packs by estate agents. However, the Department's HIPs regional coordinators visit approximately 70 estate agents a week across England and Wales to listen to feedback and gather information.
Mr. Pickles: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what the deadlines are for marketing homes without a home information pack, in relation to (a) four or more bedroom homes, (b) three bedroom homes and (c) all other homes. 
Caroline Flint: Home Information Packs were introduced for homes with four or more bedrooms from 1 August 2007, for three-bedroom properties from 10 September 2007 and for all remaining residential properties from 14 December 2007. No date has yet been set when those properties marketed before the relevant commencement dates are required to have a Home Information Pack.
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