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Dr. Ladyman: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport what range of offences she plans to specify in the orders bringing sections 11 and 12 of the Road Safety Act 2006 into effect; if she will include lorries parking illegally in the range of offences; and if she will make a statement. 
Andrew George: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport how many miles of road there are in (a) the St Ives constituency, (b) Cornwall and (c) England for which her Department is responsible. 
Jim Fitzpatrick: The most recent figures available for road mileage relate to 2006. In 2006 there were 4,620 miles of public road in Cornwall and 189,000 miles in England. Road mileage figures below local highway authority level are not available.
The Government do not encourage the carriage of firearms on board UK registered merchant ships. Only in exceptional circumstances will the Government condone the use of armed guard protection on board such ships. For example, certain shipments of nuclear material and certain VIP passenger
movements have received armed guard protection. In these exceptional circumstances, ship owners should ensure that the guards are properly trained in the effective use of firearms in order to minimise accidents.
In line with their policy of discouraging the carriage of firearms on board UK registered merchant ships, the Government have not set rules of engagement for armed guards at sea. Any company providing an armed guard protection service to a UK registered merchant ship is fully accountable under UK law and the laws of any state in whose territorial and internal waters the firearms are carried.
While the Government do not encourage the carriage of firearms on board UK registered merchant ships, there are legal provisions governing their carriage. Firearms are controlled under the Firearms Act 1968 (as amended) and these provisions were explained in Merchant Shipping Notice 1704 published in January 1998. Permits to carry firearms on ships are issued by the police under guidance issued by the Home Office. Where firearms are carried on board UK registered merchant ships the ship security plan should detail how and where they are stored and state the procedures for accessing them.
Mr. Swire: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform if his Department will (a) follow the Internet Content Rating Association (ICRA) guidelines and (b) display ICRAs label on the websites for which it is responsible. 
Mr. Thomas: Content on the core Department for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform website does meet the Internet Content Rating Association (ICRA) guidelines. The current review of BERRs website will determine whether it is possible to display ICRAs label in future.
Mr. Philip Hammond: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform how many staff in his Department and its agencies have attended the (a) Influencing with Integrity, (b) Emotional Intelligence, (c) Counselling Skills for the Workplace, (d) Managing your Confidence, (e) Balancing Work/Life Realities and (f) Working Assertively training course run by the National School of Government in the last 12 months for which information is available; and at what cost. 
Mr. Thomas: During the last 12 months, the Department for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform and its agencies has made the following use of the listed training courses run by the National School of Government:
(a) Influencing with Integrity: four staff at a cost of £2,904
(b) Emotional Intelligence: one staff member at a cost of £1,495
(c) Counselling Skills for the Workplace: 0
(d) Managing your Confidence: 0
(e) Balancing Work/Life Realities: 0
(f) Working Assertively: one staff member at a cost of £726
Mr. Spellar: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform pursuant to the answer of 3 March 2008, Official Report, column 2235W, on mineral waters, how much bottled water was purchased by his Departments contracted service provider. 
Mr. Thomas: During the last 12-month period, my Departments contracted service provider has purchased 43,680 litres of bottled mineral water, at a cost of £16,161.60. However, since November 2007, all mineral water for official functions, meetings, etc. is provided via a table water bottling system and no pre-packaged water is provided.
Bob Spink: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform what further steps he plans to take on the Gibbons proposals on employment dispute resolution; and if he will make a statement. 
Mr. McFadden: Legislative measures which aim to simplify and improve employment dispute resolution are included within the Employment Bill. Additionally, the Government are making up to £37 million available over the next three years which will allow ACAS to boost its helpline and advice services and enable it to facilitate informal resolutions at any stage of a dispute. A full account of the changes to employment dispute resolution which the Government propose will be included in the Governments response to the consultation Resolving disputes in the workplace, which will be published in due course.
Paul Flynn: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform what the annual budget for (a) Her Majestys Inspectorate of Pollution and (b) the Environment Agency has been for evaluating the research work on radioactive waste disposal carried out by Nirex since its inception. 
In June 2003, the Environment Agency (EA) entered into a formal agreement with Nirex to scrutinise the companys research, under section 37 of the Environment Act 1995. Following the integration of Nirex into the NDA, this agreement has continued between the Environment Agency and the Nuclear Decommissioning Authority (NDA), and has a budget of up to £350,000 per year.
The EA had no specific arrangements to scrutinise Nirex research between 1995 and 2003. This reflected the Nirex planning application for an underground rock characterisation facility near Sellafield and the redefined role of Nirex following the planning inquiry. There was however ongoing liaison with the company during this period.
Mr. Drew: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform whether HRH Prince Andrew recently visited West Papua as part of his role as Special Representative for Trade and Investment. 
Mr. Prisk: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform what estimate Post Office Ltd has made of its liability for empty property rates in (a) 2007-08 and (b) 2008-09. 
Mr. Laws: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform what his most recent estimate is of the number of post offices which will close under the Network Change Programme; and if he will make a statement. 
Mr. McFadden: The Government's response in May 2007 to the national public consultation on the post office network committed funding support for strategic changes to the network with up to 2,500 compensated closures nationally. Closures under the network change programme began in January and the programme is scheduled to be completed by the end of the year.
Mr. Laws: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform how many post offices are planned to be closed in each constituency under the Network Change Programme; and if he will make a statement. 
Mr. McFadden: Proposals for post office closures by parliamentary constituency are published on an area plan basis at the start of local public consultations. Details of area plans published to date are available on Post Office Ltd.'s website:
Anne Snelgrove: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform what discussions he has had with Post Office Ltd on the formula to be used to (a) earmark and (b) determine post offices for closure. 
Mr. McFadden: In identifying post offices proposed for closure and subsequent final decisions, Post Office Ltd is required to comply with the access criteria set by Government, to take account of local geography and to consider local demographic and economic factors as set out in the Government's response to the national public consultation on the post office network. Ministers do not play any role in identifying which individual post office branches should close.
Mr. Jamie Reed: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform (1) how much subsidy has been paid to those post offices proposed for closure in (a) Cumbria and (b) Copeland in the last 10 years; 
(3) what estimate he has made of the number of Post Office customers in (a) Cumbria and (b) Copeland who access and receive Post Office services on-line or remotely outside of Post Office opening hours; 
(5) what consideration the Post Office has given to (a) deprivation indicators, (b) rurality, (c) public transport links and (d) wider socio-economic issues in producing its Post Office branch closure proposals in Copeland. 
Mrs. Ellman: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform what criteria are being applied in Royal Mail's review of its mail distribution services in the North West. 
Mr. McFadden [holding answer 25 March 2008]: This is an operational matter for which Royal Mail has direct responsibility. I have therefore asked the Chief Executive of Royal Mail, Adam Crozier, to provide a direct reply to the hon. Member.
Gwyn Prosser: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform how much financial support has been given by (a) the South East Regional Development Agency and (b) English Partnerships to the regeneration of derelict sites in the former East Kent Coalfield; and if he will make a statement. 
My right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform has not made any specific assessment of the financial
support given by the South East Regional Development Agency (SEEDA) and English Partnerships to the regeneration of derelict sites in the former East Kent coalfield. However, other related assessments have taken place.
As part of the Department's sponsorship framework of the Regional Development Agencies (RDAs), a general assessment of the performance of the RDAs is undertaken by the National Audit Office in the form of Independent Performance Assessment (IPA). This assesses five criteria; ambition, prioritisation, capacity, performance management and achievement. The last IPA report on SEEDA was published in November 2006 (and can be found on SEEDA's website: www.seeda.co.uk).
More specifically, SEEDA itself commissioned consultants BBP and SQW to undertake an interim evaluation of the East Kent coalfields programme. The purpose of this was to establish the impact of regeneration activity to date in the East Kent coalfields area and to assess how well the coalfields programme has addressed its targets. This report was presented to SEEDA in August 2007 in draft and is currently being refined to include 2007 data.
BBP and SQW were previously commissioned by the Department for Communities and Local Government (CLG) to conduct an independent evaluation of the coalfields regeneration programme in England. This was published in March 2007. The report provided strong evidence of the positive impact of English Partnerships' National Coalfields Programme on our former coalfield communities, including the East Kent coalfields. The report, 'Regenerating the English CoalfieldsInterim evaluation of the coalfield regeneration programmes' is available on the Communities and Local Government website:
John Cummings: To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform how many people aged over 50 years took up training schemes offered through his Department in Easington constituency in each of the last five years. 
|LSC funded adult learners (on further education provision, Train to Gain and Adult and Community Learning)|
Overall Government investment in the further education sector has increased by 52 per cent. in real terms between 1997 and 2007. Participation funding for adults will increase to around £3.6 billion in 2010-11, an increase of over 17 per cent. compared with 2007-08.
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