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12 Jan 2009 : Column 198Wcontinued
All expenditure has to be incurred in accordance with the principles of Managing Public Money and the Treasury handbook on Regularity and Propriety.
Mr. Paterson: To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland with reference to the answer of 24 November 2008, Official Report, column 881W, on departmental hospitality, which suppliers were contracted by (a) his Department, (b) its agencies and (c) non-departmental public bodies sponsored by his Department in connection with events hosted in the last 12 months. 
Mr. Woodward: For the Northern Ireland Office (NIO) and its agencies, it would only be possible to impart a full listing of all suppliers who provided goods and services in connection with hosting events, at disproportionate cost.
Information for the NIO's executive non-departmental bodies is an operational matter for each of the bodies, who operate independently of Government. I would encourage the hon. Member to write to the respective chief executives.
Details of the NIO's non-departmental public bodies can be found in the NIO 2008 Departmental Report:
Mr. Paterson: To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland how much has been spent on his transport on official visits in the last 12 months. 
Mr. Woodward: Information on travel by the Secretary of State on official visits is not recorded separately from travel for normal ministerial duties, and to provide this breakdown could only be done so at disproportionate cost.
All ministerial travel is undertaken in accordance with the rules set out in the Ministerial Code and Travel by Ministers, copies of which are available in the Libraries of the House.
Bob Spink: To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland if he will make it his policy to ensure that those temporary and permanent employees at the same grade in his Department who are paid at an hourly rate are paid at the same rate. 
Mr. Woodward: All Northern Ireland Office (NIO) employees are paid on NIO pay scales in accordance with NIO terms and conditions, regardless of whether they are temporarily or permanently employed.
Mr. Paterson: To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland with reference to the answer of 24 November 2008, Official Report, columns 885-6W, on television, from which suppliers his Department has purchased televisions in the last 12 months. 
Mr. Woodward: All television purchases in the last 12 months were made from suppliers on approved contracts for electrical supplies in line with procurement guidelines.
To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland with reference to the answer of 28 October 2008, Official Report, column 796W, on departmental temporary employment, how many staff were recruited through each company in each year; and for how long on average staff recruited through these
companies worked for the Department in each year. 
Paul Goggins: Information on the number of temporary agency staff recruited through each company and the average length of time of employment for each person is not centrally held by the department.
These details could be ascertained only at disproportionate cost.
Mr. Paterson: To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland with reference to the answer of 24 November 2008, Official Report, column 883W, on departmental vehicles, how many vehicles were owned by the Department in each year. 
Mr. Woodward: The Northern Ireland Office excluding its agencies and executive non-departmental bodies owned six vehicles in each of the years 2003-04 to 2006-07 and three vehicles in 2007-08.
Mr. Paterson: To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland which legal firms have worked on the Robert Hamill Inquiry; for what periods; who each firm represented; how much his Department has spent on legal fees related to the Inquiry; how much has been spent on the Inquiry in each month since it was established; and when the Inquiry is expected to report. 
Mr. Woodward: I am advised by the Robert Hamill Inquiry that the following legal firms have worked on it.
|Legal firm||Period of engagement||Representation|
Legal services to the inquiry in relation to litigation conducted in Northern Ireland only
In accordance with the Robert Hamill Inquirys published funding protocol, witnesses to the inquiry are also entitled to reasonable legal advice at the inquirys expense and a number of firms have represented witnesses.
|Legal firm||Period of engagement|
Regarding the naming of the participants in the inquiry who these firms represent, the inquiry has not yet concluded the anonymity process. The inquiry is still receiving fresh and renewed applications on article 2 and medical grounds. It has an ongoing duty of care to all witnesses and cannot therefore give the names out at present. Once a witness has given their evidence or had their statement read out at the oral hearings, their name will be in the public domain. This is not the current position.
This schedule excludes witnesses who, subject to the inquirys prior approval, will be granted two hours of legal advice and assistance prior to them giving oral evidence but no legal representation at the oral hearings. These costs have not yet been incurred.
The total cost incurred by the Robert Hamill Inquiry for legal fees is £7.57 million.
The monthly spend of the inquiry is as follows:
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