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Grant Shapps: To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster pursuant to the answer of 3 March 2009, Official Report, columns 1447-48W, on departmental staff surveys, if he will place in the Library a copy of the results of the most recent staff survey undertaken by the Cabinet Office. 
Mr. Gordon Prentice: To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster when he plans to respond to the first Report of the Public Administration Committee of Session 2008-09 on Lobbying: access and influence in Whitehall. 
Mr. Watson: The Report from the Public Administration Select Committee was published on 5 January. The Government will respond in due course. Before responding, the Government have felt it important to consult a range of interested parties, including different individuals and organisations engaged in lobbying activity and organisations that can offer advice on the experience of other countries, such as the Organisation for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD).
Mr. Maude: To ask the hon. Member for Gosport, representing the Speaker's Committee on the Electoral Commission how long on average the Electoral Commission took to make payments to external organisations upon receipt of an invoice in the latest period for which figures are available. 
Mr. Maude: To ask the hon. Member for Gosport, representing the Speaker's Committee on the Electoral Commission what discussions the Electoral Commission has had with Government Departments following the announcement that individual electoral registration will be introduced in Great Britain. 
Sir Peter Viggers: The Electoral Commission informs me that since 2 March 2009 its staff have attended three meetings with Ministry of Justice officials to discuss the introduction of individual electoral registration (IER) in Great Britain. In addition, the Chair of the Commission, Jenny Watson, has discussed the Government's proposals with the Minister of State for Justice, the right hon. Member for North Swindon (Mr. Wills).
Mr. Maude: To ask the hon. Member for Gosport, representing the Speaker's Committee on the Electoral Commission what assessment the Electoral Commission made of the efficiency of the introduction of individual electoral registration in Northern Ireland. 
Sir Peter Viggers: The Electoral Commission informs me that it has undertaken a number of assessments of the impact and efficiency of individual electoral registration (IER) in Northern Ireland since its introduction in 2002. These include: an assessment of the Electoral Fraud (Northern Ireland) Act 2002 during the first year of its operation; the commissioning of a series of 12 research reports assessing key aspects of IER in Northern Ireland; and, in 2007, research to measure the accuracy and comprehensiveness of the electoral register in Northern Ireland.
The Commission further informs me that it has also undertaken an assessment of IER in the context of its reports on the administration of the 2003 and 2007 Northern Ireland Assembly elections and on the combined 2005 UK Parliamentary and local government elections in Northern Ireland.
Mr. Maude: To ask the hon. Member for Gosport, representing the Speaker's Committee on the Electoral Commission whether the Electoral Commission plans to place in the Library a copy of the (a) Labour party's and (b) Liberal Democrat party's submissions to its most recent consultation on the funding of political parties. 
Sir Peter Viggers: The Electoral Commission informs me that its most recent consultation on the funding of political parties took place in 2006 as part of a contribution to Sir Hayden Phillips' review of that subject.
That consultation consisted of a series of round-table meetings with representatives from UK political parties, including the Labour Party and the Liberal Democrats, on issues relating to election expenditure.
The Commission further informs me that it did not invite written submissions as part of the consultation. However, copies of the Commission's notes of the round-table discussions have been placed in the Library.
Mr. Maude: To ask the hon. Member for Gosport, representing the Speaker's Committee on the Electoral Commission with reference to the answer to the hon. Member for Meriden (Mrs. Spelman) of 6 October 2008, Official Report, column 84W, on political parties: finance, what the timetable is for the completion of a final impact assessment. 
Sir Peter Viggers: The Electoral Commission informs me that on 2 April 2009 it announced that, following detailed discussions with parties, it has decided not to introduce mandatory new standard requirements for party statements of accounts in 2010, as originally planned.
The Commission has said that it will continue to develop proposals for mandatory requirements and will liaise with the parties to develop a new timetable for this project. It will issue an impact assessment when it consults on the detail of its proposals. A copy of the Commission's statement has been placed in the Library of the House.
Mr. Maude: To ask the hon. Member for Gosport, representing the Speaker's Committee on the Electoral Commission pursuant to the answer of 26 February 2009, Official Report, columns 935-6W, on redundancy, whether the redundancy payments exceeded the minimum amounts which the Electoral Commission was obliged to pay by statute. 
Sir Peter Viggers: The Electoral Commission informs me that redundancy payments are made in accordance with the Civil Service Compensation Scheme. Payments under the scheme exceed the minimum statutory amounts.
Jane Kennedy: No orders have been placed for supplies of BTV-1 vaccine. DEFRA continues to closely monitor the disease situation in Europe and is working with experts and vaccine manufacturers to consider possible disease incursion scenarios so we are able to deploy proportionate responses if the threat of a BTV-1 disease incursion increases significantly.
Mr. Drew: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what assessment he has made of the effect on animal health in counties in England on the border with Wales should the Welsh Assembly Government decide to pursue a strategy of culling to reduce the level of bovine tuberculosis. 
Jane Kennedy: The announcement by the Welsh Minister on 24 March of an Intensive Action Pilot Area involving badger culling has no immediate implications for England; however, we will follow its implementation with interest.
Sir Michael Spicer: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs if he will consider the merits of culling badgers in England to reduce levels of bovine tuberculosis in the English herd; and if he will make a statement. 
Jane Kennedy: My right hon. Friend the Secretary of State has considered the wide range of evidence surrounding the role badger culling could play in the control of bovine TB and he announced the Government's policy on 7 July 2008, Official Report, columns 1153-1158.
The policy is that no licences will be issued for culling badgers for the purpose of preventing the spread of bovine tuberculosis (TB) in cattle, although the Government remain open to the possibility of revisiting this policy under exceptional circumstances, or if new scientific evidence were to become available.
Andrew Rosindell: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what assessment he has made of the likely effects of his Department's badger vaccination scheme on the incidence of bovine tuberculosis in cattle. 
Jane Kennedy: Vaccinating badgers will reduce the risk of badgers catching the disease and therefore reduce the risk of transmission from badgers to cattle. However, badgers are not the only transmission route for TB so cattle will still be at risk from TB eg through cattle-to-cattle and other transmission routes.
Dr. Pugh: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what buildings are owned or operated by his Department under a private finance initiative (PFI) arrangement; and which companies are involved with each such PFI arrangement. 
The Department has retained the freehold ownership of the land, granted a long lease to the provider and taken an operating lease of the office building which is shared with other public sector occupiers.
Jane Kennedy: DEFRA signed up to The Carbon Trusts Carbon Management Programme in October 2006. Since then, DEFRA has gained accreditation for its entire estate (core and executive agencies) to the Carbon Trust sponsored Energy Efficiency Accreditation Scheme in July 2007 and The Carbon Trust Standard for its office estate in June 2008.
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs how many staff in his Department (a) were disciplined and (b) had
their employment terminated as a result of a poor sickness record in each of the last 12 months. 
Huw Irranca-Davies: Formal warning and dismissals for poor attendance are conducted in line with DEFRAs Unsatisfactory Attendance Policy and Procedures which are available to staff via DEFRAs intranet.
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