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30 Oct 2008 : Column 1248Wcontinued
Mr. Pickles: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department on what ground local authorities will have access to the new 12 month database of communications data; what approval process to access such data will be; and with regard to what types of offences local authorities will be able to access the data. 
Mr. Coaker: We have published a consultation paper on the retention of internet communications data as the UK is required to complete the transposition of the European Directive 2006/24/EC by 15 March 2009. The proposal is for service providers to retain their data for 12 months, in line with the existing provisions for mobile and fixed line telephony.
Local authorities access to communications data will be unchanged. Under the Regulation of Investigatory Powers Act 2000 they can access subscriber data and billing data for the purposes of preventing and detecting crime and preventing disorder.
Tom Brake: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what organisations within her responsibilities (a) already are and (b) are planned to start using Airwave handsets. 
Mr. Alan Campbell: Organisations for which the Secretary of State for the Home Department has responsibility and which are already using Airwave handsets are: the 43 police forces of England and Wales, the Serious Organised Crime Agency, the National Policing Improvement Agency and the United Kingdom Borders Agency.
No other organisations for which the Secretary of State for the Home Department has responsibility are currently planning to use the Airwave service.
Sarah Teather: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many times personal profiles stored on the national DNA database have been released to (a) European and (b) other foreign governments since the database was established. 
Mr. Alan Campbell: Data on the number of occasions that personal profiles containing DNA data have been sent by the United Kingdom National Central Bureau for Interpol, (based, since April 2006, in the Serious Organised Crime Agency) could not be recovered without disproportionate cost.
Mr. Wallace: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department what additional funding above the rate of inflation Lancashire Constabulary has received to fund Special Branch expansion since 2005. 
Specific funding is not provided to police authorities for the provision of in-country special branch units. Police authorities assign funding for these units
from the funding available to them through the main police grant and locally raised police precept. A direct comparison between the 2005-06 and 2008-09 levels of main police grant would be misleading because the creation and discontinuation of a number of specific grants in this period have impacted on the level of main police grant, but not on the overall level of funding provided to the police. Nevertheless, since 2005-06 total Government grants to Lancashire police authority has increased from £210,385,869 to £243,114,829, an increase of £32,728,960.
Dedicated security posts (DSP) funding is provided to police authorities as a contribution to the costs associated with a number of security-related policing functions, including special branch units at ports. It is a longstanding policy not to disclose the capacity of special branches, including providing details of funding for individual forces. The percentage of the total DSP grant allocated to Lancashire constabulary has however, remained relatively static since 2005-06.
Mr. Ruffley: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many people were convicted for possessing or distributing prohibited weapons or ammunition in England and Wales in each police force area in each year since 1997. 
Mr. Alan Campbell: I refer the hon. Member to the answer given on 30 April 2008, Official Report, column 491W.
Mr. Bone: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many hours were spent on patrol by police officers in the latest period for which figures are available. 
Mr. Coaker: Time spent on patrol is the time an officer is patrolling but engaged on no other duties. On this basis, and excluding data for Staffordshire, which are unavailable, 13.8 per cent. of police officer time was spent on patrol in 2007-08.
A fuller picture of the activities undertaken by a police officer will include not only time on patrol but also other core duties such as responding to 999 calls or community involvement activities. In 2006-07, 64.2 per cent. of police officer time was spent on such front-line duties. Time spent on front-line duties is measured across all forces and published annually. The 2007-08 figure is not yet available.
Keith Vaz: To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department (1) what percentage of the budget of each police authority in England and Wales was held in Icelandic bank accounts before the recent collapse of several Icelandic banks; 
(2) what advice her Department has provided to police authorities in England and Wales which risk losing funds due to Icelandic banking turbulence; 
(3) whether funding will be provided by her Department to cover any potential budget shortfalls in police authorities in England and Wales due to the loss of funds as a result of Icelandic banking difficulties; 
(4) what guidance her Department has provided to police authorities in England and Wales on future investment policies. 
Mr. Coaker: The information requested is set out in the following table.
The Government have agreed an urgent plan of action with local authorities, including police authorities, for those facing funding difficulties as a result of the closure of several Icelandic banks. My officials are in close touch with the Association of Police Authorities about how we can best provide assistance to their members. We will judge what advice and support is needed on a case by case basis.
Guidance is provided by CLG which does not provide a list of individual banks or institutions. It is up to individual authorities to judge what a prudent investment might or might not be. The guidance says that local authorities should prioritise security and liquidity of investments.
|Police authority investments in Icelandic banks|
|Police authority||Budget requirement 2008-09 (£ million)||Investments (£ million)||Invested of budget (Percentage)|
1. English Police Authority Budgets: DCLG
2. Welsh Police Authority Budgets: WAG
3. Investments in Icelandic Banks: Association of Police Authorities.
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