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Mrs. Spelman: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government (1) for how many years non-domestic revaluation transitional relief operated in the (a) 1995-2000, (b) 2000-2005 and (c) 2005-2010 rating cycle; 
John Healey: The 2005 transitional relief scheme was introduced as part of the 2005 business rate revaluation. The impact of different options on all businesses was set out in a Regulatory Impact Assessment with the consultation document National Non Domestic Rates Transitional Arrangements published in August 2004.
For 1995-2000 and 2000-05 the period of transitional relief offered was five years. For 2005-10, following consultation, the period of transitional relief was four years, in order that every property should be liable for their full rates bill or receive their full rates reduction from the 2005 revaluation in the final year before the 2010 revaluation.
Mrs. Spelman: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government pursuant to the answer to the hon. Member for Peterborough (Mr. Jackson) of 13 March 2009, Official Report, column 768W, on non-domestic rates, in which local authority areas the automated valuation techniques have been used. 
John Healey: Automated techniques have been used, not for the purpose of valuation, but to inform the analysis of rents of industrial property in a limited number of local authority areas. Those areas are as follows:
South EastCrawley, Chichester, Worthing, Adur, Brighton and Hove, Hastings and Eastbourne
NewcastleGateshead, South Tyneside, Sunderland and the Teesside conurbation
East MidlandsNorthampton, Leicester and Blaby, Derby, Lincoln and Nottingham
LeedsBradford, Wakefield, Calderdale and Kirklees.
Mrs. Spelman: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government how many and what proportion of entries on the rating list which were deemed empty were below the empty property business rate threshold in (a) 2008-09 and (b) 2009-10. 
Mrs. Spelman: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what the maximum monetary value of small business rate relief to a firm (a) in London and (b) outside London was in 2008-09. 
John Healey: The maximum cash value of small business rate relief to a firm both inside and outside of London (excluding the City of London) in 2008-09 was £1,145. In the same period, the maximum cash value of small business rate relief to a firm within the City of London was £1,165.
Julia Goldsworthy: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government how many planning permissions were granted to home owners for improvements to their residential property in 2008-09. 
Communities and Local Government General Development Control Returns PSF.
To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government (1) what meetings (a) Ministers in her Department and (b) her Departments officials have had with representatives of
Dunsfold Park Limited regarding the redevelopment of the former Dunsfold Aerodrome site in Surrey in the last three years; 
(3) with reference to the answer to the hon. Member for Welwyn Hatfield of 4 February 2008, Official Report, column 853W, on property development: Dunsfold Park, which aspects of national planning policy apply to such a development. 
Margaret Beckett: Since July 2005 officials from the Government Office for the South East have attended a preview to a public exhibition on 4 February 2006 and a presentation of the proposed development on 11 September 2006.
Officials from the Government Office for the South East and from CLG have met with representatives of Dunsfold Park Ltd. on 17 April 2007 and 4 September 2007. No Ministers from CLG have met with representatives of Dunsfold Park Ltd.
Planning Policy Statement 1 Delivering Sustainable Development
Planning Policy Statement 3 Housing
Planning Policy Statement 9 Biodiversity and Geological Conservation
Planning Policy Guidance 13 Transport
Anne Milton: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government (1) for what reasons her Department rejected the proposed Dunsfold Park, Surrey eco-town development; and what methodology her Department used to assess the proposal; 
(2) with reference to the answer to the hon. Member for Welwyn Hatfield of 4 February 2008, Official Report, column 853W, on property development: Dunsfold Park, if she will place in the Library a copy of each non-confidential written representation (a) her Department and (b) the Government Office for the South East received in relation to the proposed Dunsfold Park eco-town. 
These assessment summaries were the outcome of the scrutiny of all proposals received, including Dunsfold Park, following the launch of the Eco-towns Prospectus (July 2007), and considered proposals in relation to the eco-towns criteria set out in the prospectus. Where proposals met the criteria they then were looked at across Government and its agencies in terms of transport and environment issues, and the opportunities that the locations put forward. Dunsfold Park was not judged to perform sufficiently strongly against the eco-towns criteria to be shortlisted.
As the Dunsfold Park proposal was not shortlisted for consultation in Eco-townsLiving a greener future (April 2008) no further representations were received by my Department or the Government Office South East in relation to the eco-town proposal. Representations received prior to this from Dunsfold Park Ltd. and its advisers, and any of the promoters of proposals not shortlisted, are not being released by my Department, because this could potentially prejudice any future applications they make in relation to their proposals.
Sir Nicholas Winterton: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government if she will establish a target beyond 2010 for the reduction of carbon dioxide emissions from social housing by 80 per cent; and if she will make a statement. 
Margaret Beckett: The Heat and Energy Saving Strategy, launched on 12 February this year, sets out the Governments ambitions for reducing greenhouse gas emissions from the housing stock, including social housing. In order to reduce total greenhouse gas emissions by 80 per cent. by 2050, emissions from the heat, power and lighting used in homes and buildings will need to approach zero. The Government intend to show leadership by ensuring that social housing meets, and where possible exceeds, the aims it is setting for all housing on energy efficiency, building, for example, on the achievements of the Decent Homes programme. The Government are undertaking further work on how this can be achieved as part of the consultation process, which closes on 8 May.
Sir Nicholas Winterton: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what consideration she has given to international comparisons of initiatives for energy efficiency in social housing; and if she will make a statement. 
Margaret Beckett: The Government are always ready to learn from relevant international experience in this, as in other, fields. The Department has been gathering information about retrofit approaches in other countries, to assess what measures and incentives have been successful in stimulating retrofit activity. This work has covered housing generally rather than social housing specifically.
However, due to the diversity of our building stock in comparison with other countries, and the differences in climate and attitudes to homes and housing, international comparisons, while very useful, do not provide a blueprint solution to reducing carbon emissions. It is essential that we also support innovation in technologies and delivery within the UK.
Mr. Vaizey: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport what expenditure his Department incurred on the Advisory Council on Libraries in the most recent year for which figures are available. 
Mr. Vaizey: To ask the Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport how many meetings of the dance programme board there have been to date; who attended each such meeting; and which organisations were represented at each such meeting. 
Barbara Follett [holding answer 22 April 2009]: The Dance Programme Board has met on three occasions. The organisations set out in the following tables were represented by officials from those organisations, and where appropriate the names of senior officials who attended are given.
|15 September 2008|
|12 January 2009|
|1 April 2009|
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