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Mrs. Lait: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what additional central funding has been given to local authorities to assist them in funding local council tax discounts for those affected by flooding. 
John Healey: The Government have given local authorities £30.6 million through the Restoration Fund and £18.4 million through Flood Recovery Grant. Both of these sources of funding were not ring-fenced. This allowed local authorities to decide how best to use fund locally, including, if they wished, to fund council tax discounts. This is part of a Government overall package of £133 million made available to local areas to support recovery.
In addition I announced, in June, our intention to provide financial support to those authorities who exercise their discretion under section 13 A of the Local Government Finance Act 1992 to grant discounts in respect of the council tax payable on properties which are still vacant and require major repairs due to the floods of June and July 2007. We are currently in contact with local authorities to finalise the details.
Mrs. Lait: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what the average band D 2008-09 council tax, (a) including and (b) excluding average parish precepts will be in each billing authority in Lincolnshire, following the decision to cap the police authority there in 2008. 
Details of the average band D council tax levels for 2008-09, both including and excluding average parish precepts, following the designation of the Lincolnshire Police Authority, are contained in a
Statistical Release Updated council tax levels set by local authorities in England-2008-09. This release was published on 21 August and available on the Communities and Local Government website at
Mrs. Lait: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government if she will place in the Library a copy of the minutes of the Valuation Office Agencys Programme Board of the council tax revaluation in England for the meetings of (a) 20 September 2005 and (b) 18 October 2005. 
John Healey: I refer the hon. Member to the answer given by my hon. Friend the Member for Oldham, East and Saddleworth (Mr. Woolas) to the hon. Member for Meriden (Mrs. Spelman) on 27 April 2006, Official Report, column 1285W. These minutes relate to internal discussion and advice to Ministers on the formulation and development of government policy.
Mrs. Lait: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what types of information are obtained from local authority building control and planning departments by the Valuation Office Agency for council tax valuation purposes; and what use is made of electronic billing authority reports in transferring such data. 
John Healey: The information obtained from local authority building control and planning departments varies between authorities. Most provide no direct information, but the information from others can comprise commencement notices, completion notices and plans.
Mrs. Lait: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government how much her Department spent on advertising with general ledger account number 40001 in the most recent 12 month period for which figures are available. 
Mr. Khan: The central Department, including the Government offices, spent £528,905 on statutory advertising recorded against general ledger account code 40001 for the financial year ended 31 March 2008.
James Duddridge: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government pursuant to the answer to the right hon. Member for Horsham of 14 July 2008, Official Report, column 27W, on carbon emissions: Government departments, how much air mileage incurred through departmental travel was used to calculate the departmental payment to the Government Carbon Offsetting Fund in each year that her Department and its predecessors have participated in the fund, broken down by (a) domestic, (b) short haul and (c) long haul flights. 
Mr. Khan: Communities and Local Government offsets its air travel through the Government Carbon Offsetting Fund. In 2006-07, Departments were only required to report on air travel broken down by short haul and long haul. In that year, the Department spent £2,730 to offset 275 tonnes of carbon dioxide equivalent emissions from its ministerial and official air travel in 2006-07.(1) This comprised 129,479 kilometres of short haul flights and 882,225 kilometres of long haul flights.
Data from 2007-08 have been provided to the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, who will subsequently request payment for the Departments offsets, but figures and payment details are not yet finalised.
(1) These figures do not include data from the Departments Executive agencies or the regional Government offices.
James Duddridge: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government whether those staff of (a) her Department and (b) its agencies who are entitled to business class or first class air travel are permitted to (i) travel in a cheaper class to the destination and (ii) benefit in monetary terms or kind from the saving. 
Mr. Khan: The current policy of the central Department for Communities and Local Government and its agencies is that all staff, including those entitled to business class or first class air travel, are required to travel in a cheaper class flight unless there are exceptional circumstances agreed beforehand by a senior manager. The class of air tickets that staff can use depends on the overall cost, relative convenience and duration of the flight. Benefits accrued as a result of official travel, such as air miles, must not be used for personal travel but staff are encouraged to use them to offset the cost of future official journeys.
James Duddridge: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what the location is of each office occupied by (a) her Department and its predecessor and (b) each of its agencies which has been (i) newly occupied and (ii) refurbished in the last 24 months; and what the floor area in square metres is of each. 
Mrs. Lait: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what the cost to the public purse was of (a) the theft of her laptop, (b) the theft of her ministerial driver's mobile telephone and satellite navigation system and (c) the associated damage to her official car. 
The desk top computer stolen from my right hon. Friends constituency office was not provided by the Department. My right hon. Friends official car
is supplied under a lease agreement with the Government Car and Despatch Agency and the damage was repaired at no cost to the Department. Her ministerial drivers mobile telephone was covered by an insurance policy and was replaced without cost. The satellite navigation device was not insured and the cost of replacement of £192 has been met by the Department.
Mrs. Lait: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government pursuant to the answer to the hon. Member for Bromley and Chislehurst of 30 June 2008, Official Report, columns 621-22W, on departmental contracts, who each of her Departments approved suppliers is; and which suppliers provide goods and services to her Department under an Office for Government Commerce-approved Product Framework Agreement. 
1. The National Strategy for Neighbourhood Renewal Evaluation
1. The CLG House Price Index;
2. Local Authority Formula Grant Distribution;
3. The Citizenship Survey.
Mr. Baron: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what the five most serious disciplinary breaches in her Department were in the last 12 months; and what steps were taken in response to each breach. 
Mr. Khan: During the last 12 months (for the period July 2007 to July 2008) the Department for Communities and Local Government has dealt with less then five disciplinary breaches. As there have been less than five disciplinary breaches initiated, it would not be appropriate to give detailed information on grounds of confidentiality.
Bob Spink: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government pursuant to the Answer of 30 June 2008, Official Report, column 622W, on departmental home working, if she will make it her policy to collate and maintain central records of home working by her Departments staff. 
James Duddridge: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what types of data have been sold by (a) her Department and (b) its agencies under the Re-use of Public Sector Information Regulations in the last 12 months. 
As the national mapping agency for Great Britain, Ordnance Survey provides a wide range of geodetic, geographical and topographic mapping information for sale or licence to users. These take the form of topographic maps and plans in paper and digital formats, together with digital gazetteers, digital road network data, digital terrain models and contours, satellite positioning data and paper records.
As a Trading Fund, the Fire Service College has delegated authority from the Office of Public Sector Information (OPSI) to administer its own Crown copyright and is able to license its information for re-use, in accordance with the Re-Use of Public Sector Information Regulations. The college is accredited to the OPSI information fair trader scheme and is committed to open and transparent dealings in regard to the licensing of its materials. Further details are published on the college website at
The college's library catalogue
Mrs. Lait: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government for what reasons her Department terminated its funding for the International Centre of Excellence for Local E-Democracy. 
John Healey: Communities and Local Government fulfilled a commitment of two years original programme funding for the International Centre of Excellence for Local eDemocracy (ICELE) up to 31 March 2008. This was later extended to 30 June 2008 to enable ICELE to complete any transitional activities.
James Duddridge: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what permanent residential accommodation is provided for use by civil servants in her Department; how many residential dwellings are provided; where they are located; and for what grade of civil servant they are provided. 
James Duddridge: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government if she will place in the Library a copy of the names and addresses of each organisation that supplied goods and services to her Department in 2007-08, based on the purchase order data held in the Department's financial database. 
Mrs. Lait: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government pursuant to the answer to the hon. Member for Brentwood and Ongar of 23 June 2008, Official Report, column 24W, on departmental procurement, how much and for what purpose public expenditure was incurred in respect of (a) Blue Rubicon, London, (b) Arts Club, Dover Street, London, (c) British Masonry Society, (d) Buffet4U, Birmingham, (e) Experian Ltd, (f) Euro RSCG 4D Digital, (g) Euro ESCG London Ltd, (h) the Conservative Campaign HQ, (i) the Labour Party, (j) the Liberal Democrat Party and (k) Cheese and Pickle Co., Sunderland. 
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