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Jon Trickett: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions how much has been spent on (a) redundancy payments and (b) other costs associated with redundancy in respect of each closed Remploy factory. 
|Total redundancy payments to end April 2008|
Remploy management information.
Jon Trickett: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions how many staff have successfully (a) transferred from one Remploy factory to another and (b) unsuccessfully applied for transfer following closure of a Remploy factory. 
Janet Anderson: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions if he will review the procedures by which decisions are made on whether those suffering from myalgic encephalopathy/chronic fatigue syndrome should be allowed benefits with a view to reducing the number of such decisions which subsequently go to appeal. 
Dr. Desmond Turner: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions if he will review the procedures by which judgement is made on whether those suffering from myalgic encephalomyelitis/chronic fatigue syndrome should be allowed benefits in order to reduce the number of appeals and successful appeals. 
Janet Anderson: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions how (a) the provisions of the Welfare Reform Act 2007 and (b) the guidance on disability living allowance published in July 2007 will improve access to benefits for people with myalgic encephalopathy/chronic fatigue syndrome. 
Dr. Desmond Turner: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions how (a) the provisions of the Welfare Reform Act 2007 and (b) the guidance on disability living allowance published in July 2007 will improve access to benefits for people with myalgic encephalomyelitis/chronic fatigue syndrome who go to appeal to get benefits. 
The new work capability assessment will be a fair, robust and accurate assessment of a persons capability for work, reflecting the activities needed in todays workplace and concentrating on what people can do rather than what they cannot do. The current personal capability assessment needed a thorough review to ensure that the new assessment is up-to-date and accurate, and that it will identify those people who should be entitled to employment and support allowance, including those with long term-and fluctuating conditions such as myalgic encephalopathy.
The work capability assessment is not a snapshot of a persons condition on the day of the assessment. In assessing whether a person can carry out any given activity, healthcare professionals must take into account the persons condition over a reasonable period of time. If there is a change in a persons disabling condition, there will be a provision to refer the person to an approved healthcare professional so that we can determine afresh whether or not the person has limited capability for work, or limited capability for work-related activity.
The disability living allowance guidance on myalgic encephalopathy and chronic fatigue syndrome was developed in conjunction with a group of experts in this area of medicine. It gives benefit decision-makers a greater understanding of this illness and the consequent care needs and mobility difficulties, and will enable them to make better-informed decisions on a persons entitlement to disability living allowance.
Janet Anderson: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what steps his Department is taking to ensure that assessments for the new employment and support allowance take account of the fluctuating state of health which is characteristic of people who have myalgic encephalopathy/chronic fatigue syndrome. 
Dr. Desmond Turner: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what steps his Department is taking to ensure that assessments for the new employment and support allowance take account of the fluctuating health cycle characteristic of people who have myalgic encephalomyelitis/chronic fatigue syndrome. 
Danny Alexander: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions pursuant to the Answer of 9th January 2008, Official Report, column 574W, on social security benefits: personal records, how many employees have access to the database for benefits administered by his Department. 
Mrs. McGuire: Social Security administration is carried out using many different databases, and the information requested is not recorded centrally and could be obtained only at disproportionate cost.
Danny Alexander: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions (1) how many people had their pension credit payments ended for remaining abroad for more that four weeks at a time in each year since 2003; and what the average amount of time was for payments to be restarted once such a claimant had returned to the UK in each of those years; 
For planning purposes we estimate that around 50,000 pension credit recipients go abroad for between four and 13 weeks each year, based on data from the International Passenger Survey on the number of visits abroad by length of stay for the general population of people aged 65 and over.
Extending the period to 13 weeks will be of sufficient duration to allow nearly 90 per cent. of those customers who would otherwise have had their pension credit stopped after four weeks of a temporary absence, to retain entitlement.
We estimated that the net cost of extending the absence abroad period from four to 13 weeks over this comprehensive spending review period could be around £2 million in each full year from introduction.
The proposal to extend the period of time people can go abroad and still keep their pension credit from four to 13 weeks forms part of a package of pension measures that will make claiming benefit entitlements simpler and less intrusive and deliver extra support to pensioners. Taken together the wider package of measures represents more than £500 million of additional spending on pensioners over the next three years.
1. Estimates represent combined administrative and benefit costs/savings.
2. Estimated costs and savings are consistent with the 2008 Budget settlement but it should be noted that they are based on a set of assumptions and are subject to change as new data becomes available.
Mr. Pickles: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer pursuant to the answer of 21 April 2008, Official Report, column 1668W, on capital allowances: enterprise zones, what the estimated cost is of the enterprise zone allowances to the Exchequer in 2008-09; and what estimate his Department has made of the increase in tax receipts in the first full year that the allowances are withdrawn. 
Mr. Pickles: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer pursuant to the answer of 21 April 2008, Official Report, column 1669W, on council tax: valuation, what (a) property attributes and (b) data sets the banding support tool uses to identify comparable properties. 
Jane Kennedy: The banding support tool has the capability to use (a) all available dwelling house coding attributes and (b) all current bandings in order to provide the closest matches to inform decision-making.
Mr. Pickles: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer pursuant to the answer of 17 March 2008, Official Report, column 899W, on the Valuation Office: Wales, when the automated valuation model capabilities will come into operation in Wales; what the budgeted cost is; and what work is being undertaken by Cole Layer Trumble/Tyler Technologies on the project. 
Jane Kennedy: AVM capabilities to support work in connection with the maintenance of the current (2005) council tax lists in Wales is under development. It is not subject to any timetabling and is being taken forward as resources allow with costs being contained within existing operational budgets.
Mr. Pickles: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer how many consequential amendments have been made to council tax banding, in terms of number of households, since the 2005 council tax revaluation in Wales in each local authority area in Wales according to Valuation Office Agency records. 
Jane Kennedy: The VOA is currently in the process of updating its website statistics to show all cases where the listing officer has made a change to the 2005 council tax lists in Wales since 1 April 2005, as a result of an inquiry or an appeal.
Mark Lazarowicz: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what plans the Government have for the use of revenues received by the UK from the auctioning of emission allowances in future phases of the European emissions trading scheme. 
Angela Eagle: The framework for future phases of EU ETS are currently under discussion and as such no structure for auctioning in future phases has been decided. The revised EU ETS directive is due to be finalised later this year.
Any revenue raised through the use of auctioning would be considered part of general revenue streams, and the spending review process ensures that resources are allocated efficiently to deliver Government objectives.
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