Previous Section Index Home Page

26 Nov 2008 : Column 1680W—continued

Low Newton Prison: Manpower

Dr. Vis: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice what the sickness rates were for (a) prison officers and (b) governor grades at Low Newton prison in the latest period for which figures are available; and what the average rates in each case were across all prisons. [238631]

Mr. Malik: The sick rates for the first six months of 2008-09, stated in annualised terms, for HM Prison Low Newton and across all Prison Service establishments is shown in the following table. Low Newton currently has an unusually high number of long-term sickness cases that are being managed.

Annualised sick rate (working days lost per person per year)— April to September 2008

Officers Operational managers

Low Newton

16.3

16.3

All establishments

12.2

3.6


Northern Ireland Court Service: Finance

Mr. Donaldson: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice what the anticipated capital expenditure is of the Northern Ireland Court Service in the next (a) five and (b) 10 years. [237891]

Maria Eagle: The Northern Ireland Court Service capital settlement for the CSR 07 period (2008-09, 2009-10, and 2010-11) is £7 million, £7.4 million, and £7.4 million.

The allocation provides for expenditure on the Court estate, ICT systems and business modernisation initiatives. Funding beyond the CSR period has not yet been agreed.

Northern Ireland Legal Services Commission: Finance

Mr. Donaldson: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice what the anticipated capital expenditure is of the Northern Ireland Legal Services Commission in the next (a) five and (b) 10 years. [237892]

Maria Eagle: The Northern Ireland Legal Services Commission expects to spend £1.5 million in capital as part of its short term IT strategy within the current CSR07 period. Funding beyond the CSR period has not yet been agreed.

Offenders

Chris Huhne: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice (1) what the cost of administering offending behaviour programmes was (a) in prison and (b) on probation in each of the last five years, broken down by type of programme; [239816]


26 Nov 2008 : Column 1681W

(2) what his estimate is of the number of people who (a) started and (b) completed offending behaviour programmes (i) in prison and (ii) on probation in each of the last five years; and what the rate of re-offending was for each, broken down by type of programme; [239817]

(3) how many committal hearings were held in each of the last five years; and what estimate he has made of the cost of committal hearings in each of those years; [239825]

(4) what the average cost was of keeping a person in residential drug rehabilitation for (a) a week and (b) a year in the latest period for which figures are available; and if he will make a statement; [239826]

(5) what the (a) breach rate of community sentences and (b) imprisonment rate for those who breached community sentences was in the latest period for which figures are available; and if he will make a statement; [239827]

(6) what the average (a) daily, (b) weekly, (c) monthly and (d) annual cost of supervising an offender on a community sentence was in the latest period for which figures are available; and if he will make a statement; [239828]

(7) what the average cost was of keeping a prisoner for a day in each (a) prison establishment and (b) young offender institution in the latest period for which figures are available; and if he will make a statement; [239829]

(8) what the average cost was of keeping a person in prison for a (a) week and (b) year in the latest period for which figures are available; and if he will make a statement; [239830]

(9) how many prisoners on average were serving sentences of (a) less than three months, (b) between three and six months and (c) between six and 12 months in each of the last five years. [239831]

Mr. Hanson: It has not proved possible to respond to the hon. Member in the time available before Prorogation.

Offenders: Biography

Mr. Garnier: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice if he will introduce legislation to prevent criminals profiting from their memoirs or other publications about their crimes. [239815]

Maria Eagle: We are committed to bringing forward measures to prevent convicted criminals profiting from publications about their crimes. A range of options were set out in a consultation paper (“Making Sure That Crime Doesn’t Pay”) published in November 2006. We will be publishing our response to the consultation shortly and intend to legislate when parliamentary time allows.

Offenders: Deportation

Damian Green: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice how many foreign national prisoners recommended for deportation or removal from the United Kingdom by a judge at sentencing were (a) deported or removed from the UK, (b) allowed to
26 Nov 2008 : Column 1682W
remain in the UK and (c) awaiting a Home Office decision on removal or deportation in each of the last 24 months for which figures are available. [231572]

Mr. Woolas [holding answer 3 November 2008] : I have been asked to reply.

The Chief Executive of the UK Border Agency has regularly updated the Home Affairs Select Committee with the most robust and accurate information available and will continue to do so as required. She recently advised the Committee during her appearance of 20 November that the Agency has deported or removed over 4,500 foreign prisoners so far this year and that it is on track to not only meet but exceed the target of 5,000 for 2008.

Operation Safeguard

Mr. Garnier: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice (1) how many times Operation Safeguard places were used in the last 12 months; [238455]

(2) what the average nightly cost to his Department of reserving a police cell under Operation Safeguard was in the last 12 months. [238456]

Jonathan Shaw: Between 20 November 2007 and 22 September 2008, Operation Safeguard was used on 22,748 prisoner nights.

The estimated average cost of a place in a police cell under Operation Safeguard is £385 a night.

Personal Injury: Compensation

Mr. Garnier: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice pursuant to the Answer to the hon. Member for Wantage of 22 May 2008, Official Report, column 413W, on personal injury: compensation, when he plans to publish his Department’s response; and if he will make a statement. [239786]

Mr. Hanson: It has not proved possible to respond to the hon. and learned Member in the time available before Prorogation.

Photography

Mr. Pickles: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice what locations and accompanying local authority areas are classified as prohibited places for photography further to an Order of the Secretary of State under the Official Secrets Act 1911 as amended. [238689]

Maria Eagle: The locations which are designated as “prohibited places” are contained in two statutory instruments—the Official Secrets (Prohibited Places) Order 1955 and the Official Secrets (Prohibited Places) Order 1994. The site designated by the 1955 Order is the works and offices of the United Kingdom Atomic Energy Authority at Dounreay in the County of Caithness. The sites designated by the 1994 Order are: the British Nuclear Fuels site at Sellafield, Seascale, Cumbria; the British Nuclear Fuels site and Urenco (Capenhurst) Limited sites at Capenhurst, near Chester, Cheshire; the UK Atomic Energy Authority site at Harwell, Didcot, Oxfordshire; and the UK Atomic Energy Authority site at Windscale, Seascale, Cumbria.


26 Nov 2008 : Column 1683W

Political Parties: Finance

Mr. Tyrie: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice (1) pursuant to the answer of 6 November 2008, Official Report, column 751W, on political parties: finance, whether expenditure incurred by an hon. Member outside a general election period funded by party funds which disparages an individual who is (a) an untriggered prospective parliamentary candidate and (b) a triggered parliamentary candidate for the same constituency would trigger the election expenses of the hon. Member for the purposes of the new rules; [239571]

(2) with reference to the memorandum submitted by the Electoral Commission to the Public Bill Committee on the Political Parties and Elections Bill of 2007-08, in relation to the proposed new trigger rules, whether spending by an individual in relation to a campaign on local issues, but not in relation to their candidacy in a future election, would count as a trigger; [239572]

(3) in what circumstances hon. Members will trigger their own candidate spending limits prior to the calling of a general election under the proposed new trigger rules; [239573]

(4) with reference to the impact assessment produced for the new trigger rules for election spending, what estimate has been made of the (a) change in the number of candidates in general elections and the likely number of (b)(i) pre-trigger prospective candidates and (ii) triggered candidates that would be regulated by the new rules; [239701]

(5) whether it is his policy that spending by hon. Members on promoting themselves using funds other than the public purse, outside a general election period, should be considered to be promoting or initiating their candidature for the purposes of the new trigger rules on election spending; [239702]

(6) pursuant to the answer of 6 November 2008, Official Report, column 751W, on political parties: finance, whether money spent before a person becomes a triggered candidate will count against the aggregate candidate spending limit if the goods or services purchased are used after the person becomes a triggered candidate. [239711]

Mr. Wills: It has not proved possible to respond to the hon. Member in the time available before Prorogation.

Mr. Tyrie: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice with reference to the memorandum submitted by the Electoral Commission to the Public Bill Committee on the Political Parties and Elections Bill of 2007-08, in relation to the proposed new trigger rules, whether being selected as a prospective parliamentary candidate but not being formally adopted as a parliamentary candidate would trigger the individual's election expenses. [239574]

Mr. Wills: Clause 11 (election expenses incurred for a person not yet a candidate) of the Political Parties and Elections Bill amends the definition of election expenses in section 90ZA of the Representation of the People Act 1983. Under the amended section all expenditure incurred by or on behalf of the candidate on matters listed in Part 1 of schedule 4A of the Representation of
26 Nov 2008 : Column 1684W
the People Act 1983, which is used for the purposes of the candidate's election, will be regulated, regardless of when that expenditure is incurred.

Therefore whether or not an individual has been formally adopted by a party does not determine whether any expenditure counts towards the candidate's spending limit. The purpose for which the expenditure is used is the decisive factor—any expenditure which falls within the definition in 90ZA will be regulated by the candidate's spending limit, and subsequent expenditure captured by the definition should be aggregated and reported in line with the statutory requirements.

Mr. Tyrie: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice whether the proposed new guidance on trigger rules from the Electoral Commission will be subject to the negative or affirmative procedure for statutory instruments. [239705]

Mr. Wills: The Electoral Commission may prepare a code of practice on the meaning of election expenses under the power in paragraph 14 of Schedule 4A (guidance by the Commission) of the Representation of the People Act 1983. The commission has been empowered to produce such a code of practice since the Electoral Administration Act 2006 inserted schedule 4A into the 1983 Act. Clause 12 (election expenses: guidance by Commission) of the Political Parties and Elections Bill amends paragraph 14 of Schedule 4A (guidance by the Commission) to expand the matters that can be covered by a code of practice issued under that paragraph.

A code of practice prepared by the commission under Schedule 4A must be submitted to the Secretary of State for approval. It must then be laid before Parliament by the Secretary of State (unmodified, or with his explanation of the modifications he has made to it). Parliament then has 40 days to annul the draft if it chooses to do so, and if no such resolution is made, the code shall be published by the Commission to take effect on a date appointed by the Secretary of State.

The Electoral Commission has published guidance on candidate expenditure since the introduction of paragraph 14 of schedule 4A, but it has opted to produce such guidance as part of its more general function to provide guidance and advice in respect of those matters on which it has skill and experience, rather than in the form of a code of practice under schedule 4A. The Commission has indicated that it intends to produce guidance on the new system that would be introduced by clause 11 (election expenses incurred for a person not yet a candidate). Officials from the Ministry of Justice are in discussion with the commission on the form that guidance might take.

Mr. Tyrie: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice whether he plans that the provisions in the Political Parties and Elections Bill on European Parliamentary elections are to be commenced in time to apply to the 2009 European elections. [239706]

Mr. Wills: As I explained when this issue was raised during the Committee stage of the Political Parties and Elections Bill on 18 November 2008, Official Report, column 281, we cannot be certain at this stage that the Bill will receive Royal Assent in time for the provisions in clause 13 of the Bill on boundaries at European
26 Nov 2008 : Column 1685W
parliamentary elections to be implemented in time for the European parliamentary elections in June 2009. I assured the Committee that we would not seek to commence these provisions for those elections in the event that the Bill did receive Royal Assent before the poll.

Mr. Tyrie: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice whether he plans to consult on extending local candidate expense limits for parliamentary elections following the proposals to introduce the new trigger rules in the Political Parties and Elections Bill. [239707]

Mr. Wills: As my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Justice and Lord Chancellor said during the first public evidence session of the Political Parties and Elections Bill's Committee stages, the proposal to reintroduce triggering in relation to candidate expenditure at parliamentary general elections was announced in the White Paper, “Party finance and expenditure in the United Kingdom (CM7329)”, which was published and debated by both Houses of Parliament on 16 June 2008. The Political Parties and Elections Bill containing the measure was introduced on 17 July 2008. There has thus been opportunity for scrutiny and discussion of the Bill prior to its detailed consideration by Parliament and further consultation is not proposed.

The Government have no current plans to consult on raising the level of the limit.

Mr. Tyrie: To ask the Secretary of State for Justice whether contracts entered into before, but discharged after Royal Assent is received to the Political Parties and Elections Bill, will be considered as expenditure that could trigger a candidature. [239708]

Mr. Wills: Clause 11 (election expenses incurred for a person not yet a candidate) of the Political Parties and Elections Bill amends the definition of election expenses in section 90ZA of the Representation of the People Act 1983. Under the amended section, all expenditure incurred by or on behalf of the candidate on matters listed in part 1 of schedule 4A of the Representation of the People Act 1983, which is used for the purposes of the candidate’s election, will be regulated, regardless of when that expenditure is incurred.

There is express provision in the Political Parties and Elections Bill (in clause 11(5)) to make clear that the amendments made by that section do not apply to any expenses incurred before the commencement of that section. While each expense incurred would need to be considered in its own context, expenditure would normally be regarded as being incurred when the amount and the liability to pay are established i.e. at the point at which a contract is entered into. Where expenditure is incurred prior to commencement, it will not count towards a candidate’s expenditure limit, unless the expenditure would be caught by the existing provisions on candidates’ expenditure.


Next Section Index Home Page