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Robert Neill: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer how many and what proportion of dwellings have one or more (a) dwelling house and (b) significant code assigned to them on the Valuation Office Agency's property database for council tax valuations and revaluations. 
Ian Pearson: The total number of notification changes from 1 April 2009 to 11 February 2010 with code CL26 was 29,572 representing 0.1 per cent. of the dwellings in valuation lists for England and Wales.
Robert Neill: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer with reference to the answer of 3 November 2009, Official Report, column 840W, on council tax: valuation, how many times the Valuation Office Agency has reduced the council tax band of a dwelling due to the presence of a nearby Traveller encampment in the last three months. 
Ian Pearson: This information cannot be provided other than at disproportionate cost. Although all changes to council tax bands are entered on the Valuation Office Agency's (VOA's) computer system, this cannot be interrogated to establish the precise reasons why a change in council tax band has occurred. The reasons can only be established by examining each record in turn.
Bob Spink: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what interest the Crown Estate holds in the area of land to the seaward side of the Canvey Island sea defences; and if he will make a statement. 
Julia Goldsworthy: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer how many consultants employed by his Department and its agencies have been paid (a) in total and (b) in reimbursable expenses in each of the last 10 years. 
Sarah McCarthy-Fry: Information on spending on consultancy between 2001-02 and 2007-08 is shown in table A3 on page 111 of the 2007-08 annual report (CM 7408) and spending in 2008-09 on table 5c on page 107 of the 2008-09 annual report available from
Mr. Liddell-Grainger: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what the outcomes were of the proof of concept trials undertaken by HM Revenue and Customs, the Department for Work and Pensions and 12 local authorities as referred to in the report on service transformation by Sir David Varney. 
Mr. Timms: The pilot exercise referred to formed part of the "In and Out of Work" project, designed to encourage those who frequently move in and out of work and who claim benefits and/or tax credits to take up employment. It was also designed to improve customers' experience of dealing with government by reducing the number of times they have to engage with Government services and the amount of information they have to provide.
a 15 per cent. reduction in the average time taken to make payments of benefits to customers; and
evidence that the process prevented overpayments of tax credits by ensuring that payments were adjusted quickly when a customer left employment and that housing benefit payments were adjusted more quickly in response to changes in employment.
This improvement for housing benefit processing times was coupled with a significant reduction in the resource required to process these claims, as local authorities no longer have to contact customers for details of their circumstances.
84 per cent. of customers who went through the process now understood the information that was needed to adjust their housing benefit and council tax benefit payments;
48 per cent. of customers with previous experience of claiming benefits stated that the pilot process improved the service that they received; and
77 per cent. of customers rated the way the organisations worked together as good.
The improved customer perception of the service also reduces customers' concerns around how their benefit claims will be handled. This in turn encourages them to take up work, particularly short-term work, confident that they will receive the right support from government when they most need it.
Andrew Stunell: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what the estimated (a) amount and (b) cost was of energy used in his Department and its agencies in each year since 1997; what proportion of the energy used was generated from renewable sources in each of those years; and if he will make a statement. 
Detailed information on the Treasury Group's sustainable performance by building for the years in question were published in HM Treasury's Departmental Report for 2007-08 (Cm 7408). Updates on progress will be provided annually.
Mr. Gordon Prentice: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer how many UK citizens had permanent residence in the UK but were either not resident in the UK for tax purposes or did not have UK domicile status in each year since 2000. 
Sarah McCarthy-Fry: HMRC does not collect figures relating to the numbers of UK citizens, or other categories of British national, resident in the UK. This is because citizenship and nationality are of very limited relevance to an individual's liability to tax under domestic legislation, although they can play a part in resolving treaty residence in cases where an individual is resident both here and in one of the countries with which the UK has a double taxation convention.
Mr. Clifton-Brown: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer (1) how much revenue accrued to the Exchequer from alcohol excise duties on spirits in the last 12 months; and what estimates were made of such revenue for that period in the last three years; 
Mr. Clifton-Brown: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer with reference to the answer to the hon. Member for Tamworth of 21 April 2008, Official Report, column 1675W, on excise duties: alcoholic drinks, what percentage of the average price of a (a) pint of 4 per cent. beer, (b) a 70cl bottle of 37 per cent. spirits and (c) a 75cl bottle of 13 per cent. wine comprised tax in each of the last 10 years. 
Sarah McCarthy-Fry: HMRC publishes data on the percentage of the average price of various alcohol products that is comprised of tax in the Alcohol Factsheet. This can be found in Tables 3.1 to 3.8 at:
Sarah McCarthy-Fry: HMRC's policy is not to sell seized alcohol due to the potential risks with Health and Safety and trade descriptions. Seized alcohol is disposed through a specialist contractor that uses environmentally sound methods.
Alan Keen: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer if he will set out, with statistical evidence relating as closely as possible to Feltham and Heston constituency, the effects on that constituency of changes to the Department's policies since 1997. 
Sarah McCarthy-Fry: The Neighbourhood Statistics Service provides a wide range of statistical information at parliamentary constituency level, taken from the 2001 Census and other sources. This service is available on the National Statistics website at:
The global recession has had a negative impact on economic activity in all areas of the UK. However, the economy was starting from a position of strength and is actively supported by policies implemented by the Government, including the fiscal stimulus and a significant package of support for those out of work.
In Feltham and Heston people are benefiting from this investment. Over the second half of 2009, more than 760 people moved off of the claimant count each month on average. The claimant count fell for two consecutive months in October and November. At the end of 2009, claimant count unemployment is still nearly 3 per cent. lower and long-term unemployment 97 per cent. lower than in May 1997.
Harry Cohen: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what his policy is on the appointment of a proportion of non-executive directors of financial institutions by organisations other than the financial institution in question. 
Sarah McCarthy-Fry: Appointments to boards of companies are a matter for the company and their shareholders in line with the statutory framework in the Companies Act 2006. Shareholders are responsible for holding directors accountable for their performance and stewardship and deciding whether to appoint or reappoint directors.
Sarah McCarthy-Fry: The Government's consultation on extending the scope of FSA regulation to second charge and buy-to-let mortgage lending closed on 15 February. The Government will consider the responses from stakeholders and set out their plans in due course.
Sarah McCarthy-Fry: The matter raised in this question is the responsibility of the Financial Services Authority, whose day-to-day operations are independent from Government. I have asked the FSA to write to the hon. Member.
Mr. Philip Hammond: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer pursuant to the answer of 7 January 2009, Official Report, column 564W, on fiscal policy, if he will place in the Library a copy of the latest review of fiscal consolidation measures undertaken in other advanced economies produced by his Department. 
Sarah McCarthy-Fry: There are no figures available for the number of staff in HMRC or the UK Border Agency (UKBA) working on the recovery of duty lost through fraud on alcohol sales. This is because officers are deployed flexibly across a number of threats.
Mr. Frank Field: To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer what amount of gilts has been bought by (a) the Bank of England and (b) other banks operating in the UK who are regulated by the Financial Services Authority in the last 12 months. 
Sarah McCarthy-Fry: The Bank of England has purchased £198,275 million of gilts via the Asset Purchase Facility, and £815 million for its own balance sheet purposes in the last 12 months. Please note that the amounts are shown in proceeds (i.e. amount paid) terms and that In the Asset Purchase Facility the Bank purchases only conventional gilts with a residual maturity of greater than three years (prior to August, conventional gilts with a residual maturity of greater than five and less than 25 years).
Net investment in British Government securities by deposit-taking banks is available in the Bank of England's Monetary and Financial Statistics publication page T51, table B1.2, column TBMH, available at:
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