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Chris Grayling: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions how many consultants are employed by the Personal Accounts Delivery Authority; and how much the authority has spent on them. 
Mr. Mike O'Brien: Setting up a pension scheme of the size and nature of the personal accounts scheme is a complex task and requires specialist skills. The Personal Accounts Delivery Authority needs to access a range of skills to support the development of the scheme, including skills most appropriately and efficiently provided through consultancy contracts.
The number of consultants employed by the Delivery Authority has varied over time in response to changing needs. During the period 1 March 2008 to 31 August 2008, PADA has engaged 21 consultants a month on average. These were recruited after a competitive tender exercise and in line with Office of Government Commerce procedures and best practice to secure value for money.
Jon Trickett: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what estimate he has made of the cost of awarding disability living allowance for severe sight impairment at the higher band to all those with severe sight impairment who claim the benefit. 
Mrs. McGuire: The cost of extending entitlement to the higher rate mobility component of disability living allowance to all people with severe sight impairments depends greatly on the precise definition used. One estimate made is that such a change would cost about £45 million in 2010-11, the earliest date at which such a change could be made.
Barbara Follett: Since its establishment on 12 October 2007, the Government Equalities Office has been based within premises, which house the Department of Communities and Local Government (CLG). As a result, the GEO has a rental agreement with CLG which allows it to use their IT systems. Aside from this, the GEO has not entered into any IT contracts since its inception.
Mr. Hancock: To ask the Minister for Women and Equality what discussions she has had with (a) Cabinet and (b) other ministerial colleagues on (i) departmental, (ii) sectoral and (iii) national strategies on age discrimination in the provision of goods and services and the promotion of age equality; and if she will make a statement. 
Barbara Follett: During the development of proposals for the new Equality Bill I had discussions with Government colleagues at all levels in a number of key departments including the Department of Health, Department of Work and Pensions and the Treasury to discuss, amongst other things, our proposals to take a power in the Equality Bill to prohibit age discrimination in the provisions of goods, facilities and services and the exercise of public functions and to introduce a single public sector equality duty extended to cover age. Our proposals for the Bill were set out in the Government's response to the Discrimination Law Review consultation, which was published on July 21 this year.
Mrs. May: To ask the Minister for Women and Equality what steps the Government have taken to act upon the recommendations of the United Nations Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination Against Women since the 41st session of parties of 30 June to 18 July. 
Mrs. May: To ask the Minister for Women and Equality what proportion of the £1 million emergency fund for rape crisis centres, announced in March, has been distributed; which organisations have received such funding; how much each organisation have received; and what plans the Government has to maintain the funding for the year starting April 2009. 
John Howell: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer which parliamentary constituencies his predecessor visited between (a) 8 June 2000 and 8 June 2001, (b) 8 June 2001 and 8 June 2002, (c) 8 June 2002 and 8 June 2003, (d) 8 June 2003 and 8 June 2004 and (e) 8 June 2004 and 6 May 2005; on what date each such visit occurred; and what the purpose of each such visit was. 
Mr. Scott: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer (1) how many times his predecessor visited (a) Cardiff, (b) Edinburgh, (c) Swansea, (d) Glasgow, (e) Aberdeen and (f) Dundee between 6 May 2005 and 6 May 2006; on what dates such visits occurred; and what the purpose of each visit was; 
(2) how many times his predecessor visited (a) London, (b) Birmingham, (c) Manchester, (d) Newcastle, (e) Leeds, (f) Sheffield, (g) Liverpool and (h) Bristol between (i) 8 June 2001 and 6 May 2002, (ii) 6 May 2002 and 6 May 2003, (iii) 6 May 2003 and 6 May 2004 and (iv) 6 May 2004 and 6 May 2005; on what dates such visits occurred; and what the purpose of each visit was. 
Angela Browning: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer (1) how many times his predecessor visited (a) London, (b) Birmingham, (c) Manchester, (d) Newcastle, (e) Leeds, (f) Sheffield, (g) Liverpool and (h) Bristol between 6 May 2006 and 27 June 2007; on what dates such visits took place; and what the purpose of each such visit was; 
(2) how many times his predecessor visited (a) London, (b) Birmingham, (c) Manchester, (d) Newcastle, (e) Leeds, (f) Sheffield, (g) Liverpool and (h) Bristol between 6 May 2005 and 6 May 2006; on what dates such visits took place; and what the purpose of each such visit was; 
(3) how many times his predecessor visited (a) Cardiff, (b) Edinburgh, (c) Swansea, (d) Glasgow, (e) Aberdeen and (f) Dundee between 6 May 2006 and 27 June 2007; on what dates such visits occurred; and what the purpose of each such visit was. 
James Duddridge: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer (1) which parliamentary constituencies his predecessor visited between 8 June 1999 and 8 June 2000; on what date each such visit took place; and what the purpose of each such visit was; 
Sir Gerald Kaufman: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer when he will reply to the letters of (a) 23 July 2008 with regard to Mr I Laing and (b) 28 July 2008, transferred to him from the Home Office, with regard to Mr Sehir Hussain from the right hon. Member for Manchester, Gorton. 
Mr. Drew: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer (1) what plans he has to allow the transfer of property and any respective debt secured on it from one provider to another as part of the self-invested pension plan where there are no tax implications; 
(2) what plans he has to allow the switching of a pension scheme's assets and debt to a new self-invested pension plan or small self-administered scheme
without having to requalify under the borrowing rules providing the condition that the property is not sold is met; and what assessment he has made of the extent to which such switching meets the aim of simplification of the process according to Government objectives; 
(3) what plans he has to relax the borrowing rules for pensions under self-invested pension plans and small self-administered schemes for smaller pension funds allowing the fund owner to own property as part of that scheme providing that an element of debt is included also permitting property transactions which may be for residential property as part of those schemes. 
Kitty Ussher: A self-invested or small self-administered pension scheme can transfer assets and associated borrowing to another such scheme provided these are within the limits on scheme borrowing. These limits allow borrowing of up to 50 per cent. of the value of the sums and assets held for the purposes of the member's arrangement under the scheme. This provides a prudent limit on such borrowings.
The Government support the ability to choose a diverse range of assets, including commercial property to support pension saving in registered pension schemes. It also remains open to all schemes to invest indirectly in residential property so long as this is carried out through a genuinely diverse commercial vehicle.
Peter Bottomley: To ask the Prime Minister on what occasions the Cabinet has met at times other than its regular meeting times since June 2007; which Cabinet Ministers did not attend the Cabinet meeting held in Birmingham in September 2008; when the media were first informed that the Cabinet would meet in Birmingham; and what costs arose from holding the meeting in Birmingham. 
Dan Rogerson: To ask the Prime Minister what (a) security, (b) administration and (c) other costs were incurred as a result of holding the meeting of the Cabinet in Birmingham on 8 September 2008. 
The Prime Minister: Cabinet is usually held on Tuesday mornings. My spokesman announced on 4 August that Cabinet alongside a series of visits and a public engagement events would be held outside London
Angela Browning: To ask the Prime Minister (1) how many official visits he has made to (a) Cardiff, (b) Edinburgh, (c) Swansea, (d) Glasgow, (e) Aberdeen and (f) Dundee since 27 June 2007; on what dates such visits occurred; and what the purpose of each such visit was; 
(2) how many official visits he has made to (a) London, (b) Birmingham, (c) Manchester, (d) Newcastle, (e) Leeds, (f) Sheffield, (g) Liverpool and (h) Bristol since 27 June 2007; on what dates such visits occurred; and what the purpose was of each such visit. 
Dan Rogerson: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what assessment he has had made of the effects of his Departments budget overspend in (a) 2006-07 and (b) 2007-08 on (i) cashflow for payments under the Single Payment Scheme and (ii) delivery of other frontline services. 
Jonathan Shaw [holding answer 10 September 2008]: In 2006-07, the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs exceeded its capital budget by a net £17.4 million. This amount was subsequently deducted from the 2007-08 capital budget. Through normal in-year financial management, the Department was able to live within its revised budget, including coping with the emergency costs of floods and animal disease outbreaks. The Department protected ministerial priorities and avoided any additional burden on taxpayers over the two years.
Payments under the Single Payment Scheme are funded in full from the European Union, so are not affected by budget changes. Delivery of frontline services in 2007-08 was not affected as their budgets had already been set by the time the capital budget reduction was known, and those frontline services budgets were not subsequently reduced.
Mr. Paice: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what the evidential basis is for the statement in his Departments 2008 annual report that the Government is on course to meet the 2008 target for limiting the spread of bovine tuberculosis. 
a reduction in the spread of bovine tuberculosis (bTB) to new parishes to below the incremental trend of 17.5 confirmed new incidents per annum by the end of 2008
Our statistics show that in the 12 months up to September 2007, there were 236 confirmed new incidents of bTB in new parishes i.e. those parishes where there had been no confirmed new bTB incidents during the previous four calendar years. The five-year average (mean) from October 2002 to September 2007 was 298.8 CNIs per year in new parishes compared to the previous five-year average (October 2001 to September 2006) of 316.6. So the PSA9 indicator at the end of September 2007 was 17.8 CNIs per annum. Bovine TB is cyclical in nature, with variations occurring both seasonally and
over longer time scales, so care should be taken not to read too much into such short to medium-term changes. However, taking variations into account, we would expect the projected PSA9 indicator for the end of 2008 to be below the target of +17.5 CNIs per annum.
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what the cost of overtime payments paid to staff in his Department was
in each of the last 12 months, broken down by pay grade. 
Jonathan Shaw: The following table shows the amount of overtime paid to staff in each of the last 12 months, broken down by pay grade. The data covers staff in core-DEFRA and agencies covered by core-DEFRA pay arrangements (i.e. Animal Health, Marine and Fisheries Agency, Veterinary Medicines Directorate, Government Decontamination Service and Pesticides Safety Directorate (which merged with the Health and Safety Executive on 1 April 2008)).
HEOHigher Executive Officer
SEOSenior Executive Officer
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