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22 Mar 2010 : Column 24W—continued

22 Mar 2010 : Column 25W

Cold Weather Payments

Danny Alexander: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions pursuant to the answer of 8 March 2010, Official Report, column 68W, on cold weather payments: highlands of Scotland, in respect of how many weather stations cold weather payments have been triggered in 2010; what payments have been made in respect of each weather station in 2010; and what estimate has been made of the number of potential qualifiers in respect of each weather station in 2010. [323081]

Helen Goodman: The information requested is given in the table.

Cold weather payments in 2010 for weather stations linked to the Highlands
Weather station Triggers Estimated number of potential qualifiers Estimated number of payments authorised

















Loch Glascarnoch
















Tulloch Bridge




Wick Airport




Notes: 1. The Highlands has been interpreted as the unitary authority of that name. 2. Some of the weather stations listed are also linked to areas that are not part of the Highlands. 3. Figures are based on triggers notified in the calendar year 2010 up to and including 17 March. 4. The estimates of potential qualifiers and payments authorised relate to the entire area the weather station is linked to, not just to those in the Highlands. 5. The estimated numbers of potential qualifiers have been rounded to the nearest 100. 6. The estimated number of payments authorised for a weather station has been calculated as the number of triggers multiplied by the estimated number of potential qualifiers for that weather station. Source: DWP records of triggers to weather stations up to and including 17 March 2010 and estimated numbers of potential qualifiers by weather station.

Cold Weather Payments: Angus

Mr. Weir: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions how many (a) households and (b) individuals in weather station areas covering Angus have received cold weather payments since 1 November 2009. [323342]

22 Mar 2010 : Column 26W

Helen Goodman: The available information is given in the table.

Weather stations covering Angus parliamentary constituency
Weather station Estimated number of benefit units which have received cold weather payments since 1 November 2009









Notes: 1. Cold weather payments are made to benefit units rather than to households or individuals. A benefit unit can be a single person or a couple and can include children. 2. Each of the weather stations listed also covers an area that is not part of Angus parliamentary constituency. 3. The estimated number of benefit units which have received cold weather payments relates to the entire area that the weather station covers, not just to that in Angus parliamentary constituency. 4. Estimated numbers have been rounded to the nearest 100. Source: DWP records of triggers to weather stations up to and including 18 March 2010 and estimated numbers of potential qualifiers by weather station.

The Government provide information about cold weather payments on the Directgov website at:

This includes the eligibility rules, details of how payments are made and a postcode search which allows customers to find out whether the weather station that is linked to a specific postcode has triggered.

Departmental Internet

Mr. Heald: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions how many designs for its (a) internal website and (b) intranet her Department has commissioned since 2005; and what the cost was of each such design. [321991]

Jim Knight: The DWP internal website for staff is called DWP Intranet. No commissions for a redesign of the DWP Intranet have been made since 2005 and therefore no costs have been incurred.

Departmental Public Expenditure

Mrs. May: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions for what reasons the departmental expenditure limit for her Department in 2009-10 changed from £9.728 million in her Department's three-year business plan to £9.2 billion in the pre-Budget report. [317618]

Jonathan Shaw: The 2009-10 figure of £9.728 billion presented in the Department's three-year business plan represented the total funding available to the Department. This included additional funding agreed at pre-Budget report 2008 and Budget 2009, to support the Department in its response to the recession.

The revised figure of £9.2 billion presented in the pre-Budget report 2009 represented a departmental group which includes the Government Equalities Office.

The Department for Work and Pensions proportion of this funding was £9.090 billion. This was reflected in the winter supplementary estimate laid in Parliament on 24 November 2009.

22 Mar 2010 : Column 27W

The Department's final funding position for 2009-10 is set out in the spring supplementary estimate which was laid in Parliament on 23 February 2010.

Departmental Travel

Mr. Philip Hammond: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions how much (a) Ministers and (b) staff of each grade in (i) her Department and (ii) its agencies spent on first-class travel in the last 12 months. [320392]

Jonathan Shaw: The Department has over 100,000 staff operating from over 1,000 office locations across the UK. The Department's travel policy encourages staff to travel using the most cost-effective tickets available at the time of booking and staff must consider travelling standard class where possible.

The spend for first-class travel by DWP for the last 12 months (February 2009 January 2010) is as follows:

DWP first-class travel spend (£000)



DWP agencies:

Jobcentre Plus


Pension, Disability and Carers Service


The Child Maintenance and Enforcement Commission


DWP Corporate Functions


Total DWP (excluding Ministers)


There was no first-class air travel undertaken in the period in question and therefore all of the above figures relate to rail travel.

The split by grade is not available for the required period.

Travel by civil servants is undertaken in accordance with the principles of Managing Public Money and the Treasury handbook on Regularity and Propriety. The Civil Service Management Code sets outs regulations and instructions to Departments and agencies regarding the terms and conditions of service of civil servants and the delegations which have been made by the Minister for the Civil Service under the Civil Service (Management of Functions) Act 1992 together with the conditions attached to those delegations.

The code can be accessed at:

Paragraph 8.2 of the code deals with travel and under this section Departments and agencies must ensure that staff use the most efficient and economic means of travel in the circumstances, taking into account any management benefit or the needs of staff with disabilities.

Disability Living Allowance

Steve Webb: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what her most recent estimate is of the number of people aged between 60 and 64 years old claiming the higher rate care component of disability living allowance on the grounds of terminal illness. [322291]

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Jonathan Shaw [holding answer 15 March 2010]: The information requested is provided in the table.

Disability living allowance special rules cases in payment receiving the higher rate care component as at August 2009


Aged 60 to 64


1. Figures are rounded to the nearest hundred.
2. All recipients under special rules are entitled to the higher rate care component. Information on the mobility component awarded to special rules claimants is included, however this part of the award may not be associated with special rules.
3. Totals show the number of people in receipt of an allowance, and excludes people with entitlement where the payment has been suspended, for example if they are in hospital.
Work and Pensions Information Directorate 5 per cent. sample.


The preferred statistics on benefits are now derived from 100 per cent. data sources. However, the 5 per cent. sample data still provide some detail not yet available from the 100 per cent. data sources, in particular, more complete information on the disabling condition of disability living allowance claimants. The Department recommends that, where the detail is only available on the 5 per cent. sample data, or disabling condition is required, the proportions derived should be scaled up to the overall 100 per cent. total for the benefit. The figures have been rated to agree with Work and Pensions Longitudinal Study totals.

Employment and Support Allowance

Mr. Harper: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what the average waiting time was for a work capability assessment to be conducted for claimants for employment and support allowance in the latest period for which information is available. [319976]

Jonathan Shaw [holding answer 2 March 2010]: The average time from the date an employment and support allowance claim starts to the date that Atos advice is given is shown in the following table. Information is provided from October 2008 (when employment and support allowance was introduced) to June 2009 (the latest data that can be used to calculate a reliable average).

Average calendar days from claim start to Atos assessment

October 2008


November 2008


December 2008


January 2009


February 2009


March 2009


April 2009


May 2009


June 2009


The actual time that Jobcentre Plus and Atos take to complete a case may be different as we cannot exclude any backdating of a claim or include the time from Atos advice to the Jobcentre Plus decision on entitlement.

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Employment Schemes

Mrs. May: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions how many job point kiosks there are; how much her Department spent on job point kiosks since their introduction; what assessment she has made of the effectiveness of job point kiosks; and what plans she has for the future of such kiosks. [323482]

Jim Knight: The administration of Jobcentre Plus is a matter for the chief executive of Jobcentre Plus, Darra Singh. I have asked him to provide the right hon. Member with the information requested.

Letter from Darra Singh:

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