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Mrs. Spelman: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government whether households which have defaulted on their mortgage payments in the last five months will be eligible for support under the Homeowner Mortgage Support Scheme. 
To be eligible for Homeowners Mortgage Support, households need to have been making regular payments, but not necessarily in full, in agreement with their lender for at least five months. This demonstrates that the borrower is able to continue to make ongoing
payments at a reduced level before entering the scheme, and provides an opportunity for other forbearance options to be considered first. If a household has missed a payment or payments without the agreement of their lender, they can still become eligible by making regular payments in agreement with their lender for five months. These arrangements reflect the fact that Homeowners Mortgage Support is designed to help households experiencing a temporary reduction in their income. Other forms of assistance, such as Support for Mortgage Interest or the Mortgage Rescue Scheme, are available for households who have experienced a complete loss of income.
Mrs. Spelman: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what estimate she has made of the cost of the Homeowner Mortgage Support Scheme in each of the next three years; and how many households are expected to participate. 
We estimate that the total cost of HMS over eight years will be £44 million (present value). This is based on a central estimate that around 42,000 households could join HMS (assuming the participation of lenders accounting for 50 per cent. of the number of eligible households in three months and more mortgage arrears). If lenders representing 100 per cent. of eligible households in three months and more mortgage arrears offer the terms of HMS, then we estimate that up to 85,000 households could be helped by the support.
Information on the profile of the costs to Government in each of the eight years was given in response to a question from the hon. Member for Welwyn Hatfield (Grant Shapps) on 24 April 2009, Official Report, column 919W.
Mrs. Spelman: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government pursuant to the answer to the hon. Member for Peterborough of 2 April 2009, Official Report, column 1508W, on the National Housing and Planning Advice Unit, on what date the unit plans to publish the first summary of board discussions on its website. 
Margaret Beckett: The NHPAU will be publishing summaries of Board discussions and outcomes of meetings on its website on Friday 8 May 2009. The published summaries will be for the period from February 2008 onwards. Summaries of future discussions will appear shortly after each monthly Board meeting and will appear on the NHPAU website.
To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government pursuant to the answer to the hon. Member for Peterborough of 18 March 2009, Official Report, columns 1180-81W, on
non-domestic rates: Greater London, if she will place in the Library a copy of the guidance note on the sub-location concept. 
Mrs. Spelman: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government pursuant to the Written Ministerial Statement of 30 March 2009, Official Report, column 37WS, on regeneration, if she will place in the Library a copy of each item of correspondence between her Department and the European Commission on the financial corrections for the 1997 to 1999 programme period. 
Mrs. Spelman: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government pursuant to the written ministerial statement of 30 March 2009, Official Report, column 37WS, on regeneration, what financial irregularities resulted in the financial corrections confirmed by the European Commission. 
John Healey: The irregularities that gave rise to the financial corrections confirmed by the European Commission included some failures to properly apply the relevant procurement directives; insufficient supporting documentation to justify the inclusion of certain project expenditure and examples of insufficient documentation to support the amounts or method of apportionment used in calculating overheads. There was no suggestion of fraud or impropriety.
Anne Milton: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government whether she plans to publish the final version of the South East Plan before the beginning of the restricted period outlined in the Cabinet Office guidance on announcements in an election period. 
John Bercow: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what recent progress has been made in the delivery of the Thames Gateway Delivery Plan; and if she will make a statement. 
Margaret Beckett: Progress in the delivery of the Thames Gateway Delivery Plan is set out in the Thames Gateway annual report. The 2007-08 annual report was published in July 2008. The 2008-09 annual report will be published this summer.
Mr. Sutcliffe: The latest Alcohol, Entertainment and Late Night Refreshment Licensing bulletin shows that for the year ending March 2008 there were 338,900 personal licence holders in England and Wales, based on 97 per cent. returns from licensing authorities. A personal licence authorises an individual to supply or authorise the supply of alcohol in accordance with a premises licence or temporary event notice under the Licensing Act 2003.
Gordon Banks: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what ceremonial formalities are observed on the return from (a) Iraq and (b) Afghanistan of the remains of service personnel killed on active service; and if he will make a statement. 
These ceremonies are military and not governmental occasions. Such ceremonies are supported by an eight man Bearer party, usually drawn from the deceased's own regiment or service, and two buglers, all of whom are supervised by a senior ceremonial warrant officer. The ceremony, which is a service conducted by a military chaplain, is attended by a senior military representative, of at least two star rank, to convey the nation's respect.
It is possible for personnel from British Overseas Territories to record their nationality as "British". As such, the figure stated above may be an under estimate of the total British Overseas Territories citizens deployed to Afghanistan.
Mr. Quentin Davies: The MOD identifies the costs of operations in terms of the net additional costs it has incurred. The costs that would have been incurred regardless of the operation taking place, such as wages and salaries, are not included. Savings on activities that have not occurred because of the operation, such as teaming exercises, are taken into account in arriving at the net figures.
The Spring Supplementary Estimates, published in February, set out the 2008-09 unaudited estimates, and these are provided in the following table. The final audited amounts are expected to be published in July 2009.
Mr. Jenkin: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what the chain of command in Helmand province will be between US, UK and International Security Assistance Force forces following the United States' deployment of additional troops to the province; and if he will make a statement. 
Mr. Quentin Davies: In response to a request from Commander ISAF, General David McKiernan, President Obama recently announced the deployment of an additional 17,000 US troops to Afghanistan to support the ISAF mission in Afghanistan, many of which will deploy to Helmand Province.
All ISAF forces, regardless of nationality, operate under the NATO chain of command. Therefore, UK forces in Helmand province will remain under the command of Task Force Helmand (TFH), who in turn are under the command of the International Security and Assistance Force, Regional Command (South).
Mr. Morley: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what recent representations he has received on psychometric testing of personnel due to be sent to combat zones to identify their vulnerability to combat stress; what response he has made to such representations; and if he will make a statement. 
Mr. Kevan Jones: From time to time, the Department receives representations about the mental health services provided for members of the armed forces. I am not aware of any recent representations specifically on psychometric testing of personnel prior to deployment. The Departments evidence-based view is that such selection processes do not work and would be counter-productive.
Recent research is summarised in the Kings Centre for Military Health Research Ten Year Report published in 2006 by the University of London and covering a decade's worth of research concerning the health of UK service personnel and veterans. This explains that selecting out individuals who might be at increased risk of developing mental health difficulties prior to recruitment or deployment is a flawed strategy because, whether one uses clinical interviews or questionnaire-based methods, it is impossible to distinguish reliably between those who will go on to experience psychological difficulties and those who will not. An ineffective selection programme would not just be costly and labour intensive but is likely to have adverse consequences both for individuals who would unnecessarily be prevented from deploying when doing so is part of their job, and for the operational efficiency of the armed forces by unnecessarily reducing the numbers of personnel available to carry out operational tasks.
Mrs. Humble: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence if he will take steps to implement the recommendations in the Review of Defence Medical Services undertaken by the Healthcare Commission at the request of the Surgeon General. 
Mr. Kevan Jones: Yes. The MOD is committed to meeting the Commissions recommendations, which recognise where we are already demonstrating best practice in delivering healthcare and will help the Defence Medical Services (DMS) to drive improvements. We are exploring with the Department of Health how best to take forward continuing external and independent examination of our medical services. We have already created our own defence medical inspector general, whose remit includes following the Commissions review with a wider internal review across the whole DMS and other appropriate Defence process owners.
Mr. Hoyle: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what assessment he has made of the effect of the award of each of his Department's current contracts on (a) the UK employment market and (b) the number of jobs in businesses which (i) have bid for or secured such contracts and (ii) are in the supply chain for such contracts. 
Mr. Quentin Davies: The Ministry of Defence's primary consideration whilst making procurement decisions is to ensure that we secure the best equipment available for our armed forces, and also to ensure value for money for the taxpayer.
The industrial implications of our procurement decisions are considered strategically within MOD in the context of the Defence Industrial Strategy (DIS), which promotes a sustainable UK defence industrial base.
Mr. Dai Davies: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what research his Department has undertaken into the pathological basis of new iatrogenic diseases caused by chemicals including therapeutic agents recognised to modify the phenotype of human tissues in respect of illnesses identified in those who served in the Gulf War in 1990-91. 
Mr. Kevan Jones: No projects have been undertaken to date. We are unaware of published peer reviewed evidence of new iatrogenic diseases caused by chemicals, including therapeutic agents in ill veterans who served in the Gulf in 1990-91. The Medical Research Council (MRC) provides the MOD with independent expert advice on its Gulf research programme. In 2003 the MRC carried out a review of published research into UK Gulf veterans illness and the main recommendation was that research aimed at improving the long term health and well-being of Gulf veterans with persistent symptoms should take priority. A copy of the report is published on the MRC web site found at the following link;
A contract for research into possible ways of rehabilitating ill Gulf veterans has been awarded to a group at Cardiff University. The project involves close working with veterans and ex-service charities and is now in progress.
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