Ann McKechin: To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland what estimate he has made of the funding required from the Government to support Citizens Advice Scotland following its proposed acquisition of the responsibilities of Consumer Focus Scotland. 
Michael Moore: The Government will work with Citizens Advice Scotland and Consumer Focus Scotland to ensure the transfer of functions is carried out smoothly. That will involve issues around funding.
Ann McKechin: To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland what (a) discussions and (b) correspondence on what dates he had with the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills on the transfer of the work of Consumer Focus Scotland to Citizens Advice Scotland prior to the announcement of that transfer. 
Michael Moore: I have regular exchanges with the Secretary of State for Business, Innovation and Skills on a range of issues.
The Scotland Office has had discussions with the Scottish Government and with Consumer Advice Scotland on the implications of the transfer of functions to Citizens Advice Scotland.
Jo Swinson: To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland what assessment he has made of the recommendations relevant to his Department's policy responsibilities contained in the Foresight report on Mental Capital and Well-Being by the Government Office for Science; if he will ensure that his Department takes steps to promote well-being; if he will ensure that his Department's policy development process takes account of psychological research into subjective well-being; and if he will make a statement. 
Michael Moore: I welcome the conclusions of the Foresight Project on Mental Capital and Wellbeing and will ensure that my Department acts on these as appropriate.
Gregg McClymont: To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland what is his most recent estimate of the Barnett consequential for Scotland from planned changes to higher education funding in England; and if he will make a statement. 
Michael Moore: The spending review sets out how the Government will carry out Britain's unavoidable deficit reduction plan by putting the economy back on a sustainable footing. The Scottish Government's budget is calculated using the Barnett formula which allocates population based shares of changes to spending on devolved matters, although it is for the Scottish Government to determine how they allocate their budget. The Scottish budget announced at the spending review therefore includes the population based share of the higher education resource budget in England being reduced by 40%, or £2.9 billion, from £7.1 billion to £4.2 billion by 2014-15.
Gregg McClymont: To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland what is his most recent estimate of the Barnett consequential for Scotland resulting from planned changes to the further education budget in England. 
Michael Moore: The spending review sets out how the Government will carry out Britain's unavoidable deficit reduction plan by putting the economy back on a sustainable footing. The Scottish Government's budget is calculated using the Barnett formula which allocates population based shares of changes to spending on devolved matters, although it is for the Scottish Government to determine how they allocate their budget. The Scottish budget announced at the spending review therefore includes the population based share of the further education resource budget in England being reduced by 25%, or £1.1 billion, from £4.3 billion to £3.2 billion by 2014-15.
Gregg McClymont: To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland when he last met representatives of higher education students in Scotland. 
Michael Moore: Ministers and officials have meetings with a wide variety of organisations in the public and private sectors as part of the process of policy development and delivery. As was the case with previous Administrations, it is not the Government's practice to provide details of all such meetings.
Philip Davies: To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland how many staff of his Department have been offered enhanced early retirement packages in each of the last three years. 
Mr Paterson: In each of the last three years my Department has offered the following enhanced early retirement packages:
Mr Watson: To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland what departmental policy reviews his Department has undertaken since 6 May 2010; on what date each such review (a) was announced and (b) is expected to publish its findings; what estimate he has made of the cost of each such review; who has been appointed to lead each such review; to what remuneration each review leader is entitled; how many (i) full-time equivalent civil servants and (ii) seconded staff are working on each such review; from which organisations such staff have been seconded; and how much on average such seconded staff will be paid for their work on the review. 
Mr Paterson: The Northern Ireland Office (NIO) has not undertaken any departmental policy reviews since 6 May 2010.
Ian Austin: To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland what estimate his Department has made of its expenditure on travel undertaken by (a) him and (b) each other Minister in his Department in (i) September and (ii) October 2010. 
Mr Paterson: Travel expenditure incurred by the Northern Ireland Office ministerial team for September and October 2010 is as follows:
Secretary of State: £5,535.35
Minister of State: £1,448.00.
Secretary of State: £10,233.55
Minister of State: £1,797.44.
Mr Bone: To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland what recent discussions he has had with the Secretary of State for the Home Department on the level of human trafficking into Northern Ireland. 
Mr Paterson: I have had no recent discussions on this subject. Policy relating to organised crime is the responsibility of the devolved Administration in Northern Ireland, in liaison with the Home Secretary and other UK authorities where appropriate.
Jo Swinson: To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland what assessment he has made of recommendations relevant to his Department's policy responsibilities contained in the Foresight report on Mental Capital and Wellbeing by the Government Office for Science; if he will ensure that his Department takes steps to promote well-being; if he will ensure that his Department's policy development process takes account of psychological research into subjective well-being; and if he will make a statement. 
Mr Paterson: No recommendations contained in the Foresight report on Mental Capital and Wellbeing are relevant to the Department's policy responsibilities.
Ian Austin: To ask the Secretary of State for Wales how much her Department spent on hospitality for events hosted by each of its Ministers in (a) September and (b) October 2010. 
Ms Angela Eagle: To ask the Secretary of State for Wales (1) how much funding to meet staff redundancy costs was identified in her Department's settlement letter in respect of the comprehensive spending review; 
(2) what estimate she has made of the number of redundancies arising from the spending reductions proposed in the Comprehensive Spending Review; 
(3) what estimate she has made of the cost to her Department of staff redundancy in each of the next four years. 
Mr David Jones: The Wales Office has no plans for any redundancies at present. Any work force reductions would most likely be achieved through routine staff turnover. Determining optimal work force reforms in order to live within the Department's spending review settlement will be an ongoing process.
Mr Watson: To ask the Secretary of State for Wales what departmental policy reviews her Department has undertaken since 6 May 2010; on what date each such review (a) was announced and (b) is expected to publish its findings; what estimate she has made of the cost of each such review; who has been appointed to lead each such review; to what remuneration each review leader is entitled; how many (i) full-time equivalent civil servants and (ii) seconded staff are working on each such review; from which organisations such staff have been seconded; and how much on average such seconded staff will be paid for their work on the review. 
Mr David Jones: The Wales Office has not undertaken any departmental policy reviews.
Ian Austin: To ask the Secretary of State for Wales what estimate her Department has made of its expenditure on travel undertaken by (a) her and (b) each other Minister in her Department in (i) September and (ii) October 2010. 
Mr David Jones: The cost of travel for the Secretary of State was £455 in September and £173 in October. My travel costs were £146 in September and £169 in October.
The Wales Office continues to make significant savings on travel since the Welsh Secretary instigated a standard class only travel policy for all Ministers and staff.
Chris Heaton-Harris: To ask the hon. Member for South West Devon, representing the Speaker's Committee on the Electoral Commission, what guidance the Electoral Commission issues to local government boundary reviews on the (a) number of members to be elected in each ward and (b) the frequency of elections. 
Mr Streeter: The Electoral Commission informs me that it issues no such guidance. The responsibility for local government boundary reviews lies with the local government boundary commissions for England, Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales.
The Local Government Boundary Commission for England (LGBCE) informs me that it issues electoral review guidance to local authorities within the framework provided by the Local Democracy, Economic Development and Construction Act 2009.
The Act provides that where a local authority which holds, or has resolved to hold, whole council elections every four years requests the LGBCE to undertake a single-member ward review, there is a presumption that the LGBCE should recommend a pattern of single-member wards for that authority. Where a local authority elects its members by thirds (elections in three years out of every four), there is a presumption that the LGBCE should recommend a uniform pattern of three-member wards. Similarly, where a local authority elects by halves (elections in two years out of four), there is a presumption that the LGCBE should recommend two-member wards.
However, in each of these circumstances, the LGBCE is obliged to recommend a pattern of wards that best meets all of its other statutory criteria: to provide for equality of representation; to reflect community identities and interests; and to secure effective and convenient local government. This overrides any presumption to recommend a uniform pattern of single-, two- or three-member wards. Accordingly, the LGBCE is able to recommend a mixed pattern of wards if that would best meet its statutory criteria.
The LGBCE does not provide guidance on the frequency of elections.
Guto Bebb: To ask the hon. Member for South West Devon, representing the Speaker's Committee on the Electoral Commission, what estimate the Electoral Commission has made of the cost to the public purse of each referendum and election due to take place on 5 May 2011. 
Mr Streeter: The Electoral Commission informs me that the estimated cost of its own activities relating to the UK-wide referendum proposed for 5 May, and which would also support the elections already scheduled in England, Northern Ireland, Scotland and Wales on 5 May, is £9.3 million.
This includes the cost of fulfilling its statutory responsibilities at a referendum, including delivering a public information campaign and making grants of public money, up to a maximum of £0.6 million each, to the designated organisations appointed as lead campaigners
for each of the referendum outcomes. The Cabinet Office has developed separate estimates for the total costs of running a national referendum and I refer the hon. Member to the answer given by the Minister for Political and Constitutional Reform, the hon. Member for Forest of Dean, (Mr Harper) on 14 July 2010, Official Report, column 798W.
Should the UK-wide referendum not take place then the Commission informs me that its estimated costs in relation to the scheduled elections on 5 May 2011 alone would be approximately £3 million.
Ian Austin: To ask the Attorney-General how much the Law Officers' Departments spent on hospitality for events hosted by each Minister in those departments in (a) September and (b) October 2010. 
The Attorney-General: There has not been any expenditure on such events by the Law Officers' Departments during this period.
Mr Watson: To ask the Attorney-General what departmental policy reviews the Law Officers' Departments have undertaken since 6 May 2010; on what date each such review (a) was announced and (b) is expected to publish its findings; what estimate he has made of the cost of each such review; who has been appointed to lead each such review; to what remuneration each review leader is entitled; how many (i) full-time equivalent civil servants and (ii) seconded staff are working on each such review; from which organisations such staff have been seconded; and how much on average such seconded staff will be paid for their work on the review. 
The Attorney-General: The Law Officer's Departments have not undertaken any policy reviews since 6 May 2010.
Ian Austin: To ask the Attorney-General what estimate the Law Officers' Departments have made of expenditure on travel undertaken by (a) him and (b) each other Minister in these Departments in (i) September and (ii) October 2010. 
The Attorney-General: Travel by Ministers is undertaken in accordance with the Ministerial Code.
The expenditure on air and rail travel undertaken by the Attorney-General and the Solicitor-General in September and October 2010 is as follows:
The Law Officers also made use of the Government Car Service during this period for shorter journeys while on Government business, the annual costs for which are presented to Parliament by the Secretary of State for Transport in a written ministerial statement.
Mr Bone: To ask the Attorney-General what recent assessment he has made of the effectiveness of the Crown Prosecution Service in bringing prosecutions for offences relating to human trafficking; and if he will make a statement. 
The Attorney-General: The Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) is working to improve the number of prosecutions under human trafficking legislation. Where the CPS is unable to prosecute for a human trafficking offence, they will charge other offences such as assisting unlawful immigration to a member state (facilitation), combined with serious criminal offences such as rape, kidnapping, false imprisonment, threats to kill and causing or inciting prostitution for gain. All cases are reviewed in accordance with the Code for Crown Prosecutors.
Graham Stringer: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs if she will place in the Library a copy of the international agreement on biodiversity concluded at Nagoya in October 2010. 
Richard Benyon: Over 40 decisions were agreed by the 193 parties to the convention on biological diversity (CBD), by consensus. These included an agreement on a new protocol on access and benefit sharing with respect to genetic resources, a new strategic plan setting out the actions required by parties to meet the new mission of the convention, and a resource mobilisation strategy to help developing countries to deliver their commitments for biodiversity. The decisions are available as advance, unedited texts from the CBD website. The final versions will be published on the CBD website once the official Rapporteur of the meeting has agreed to them.
Copies of decisions of meetings of intergovernmental bodies like the Conference of the Parties to the CBD would not normally be placed in the Library, as they are not published in the United Kingdom, and are freely available from the internet.
Stephen Twigg: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs whether her Department holds figures on the incidence of dog-on-dog attacks. 
Mr Paice: Figures on the numbers of dog-on-dog attacks are not centrally recorded.
Stephen Twigg: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs if she will bring forward measures to reduce the number of dog-on-dog attacks. 
Earlier this year, the law on dangerous dogs was the subject of a public consultation. The consultation closed on 1 June and some of the 4,250 responses referred to the issue of dog-on-dog attacks.
The Government will be publishing a summary of the responses and will make an announcement about the way ahead shortly.
Jake Berry: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what timescale she has set for the continuation of her Department's public consultation on the Dangerous Dogs Act. 
Mr Paice: The consultation closed on 1 June and received 4,250 responses. The Government will be publishing a summary of the responses and make an announcement about the way ahead shortly.
Bob Russell: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what steps she plans to take to ensure that measures suggested by the Advisory Council on the Welfare Issues of Dog Breeding are implemented by (a) the Kennel Club and (b) breed clubs. 
Mr Paice: The Government welcome the establishment of the independent Dog Advisory Council, whose members are currently being appointed. However, it is premature to offer a commitment to facilitate any recommendations that the council may make.
Bob Russell: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs if she will take steps to ensure that pedigree dogs are free from genetic disease and exaggerated conformations before they are allowed to breed; and if she will make a statement. 
Mr Paice: I consider that the recent establishment of an independent Dog Advisory Council is a positive step towards protecting the health of all dogs. The council will address breeding malpractices and it is premature to speculate at this stage what actions Government may be asked to take to promote higher breed standards.
Miss McIntosh: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what matched funding for Rural Development Fund payments to farmers in England there has been in each of the last five years. 
Mr Paice: The following table shows figures on the matched funding for rural development fund payments to farmers in England in each of the last five years.
|Financial year||European funds||Exchequer match funds|
The spend figures above were taken from DEFRA's consolidated resource accounts.
These figures are the total spend, and include funding paid to rural projects, some of which went to non-farming socio-economic beneficiaries.
Graham Stringer: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what information her Department holds on the level of sales of hydrofluorocarbon gases for refrigeration and air conditioning equipment in the UK in each of the last five years. 
Mr Paice: DEFRA does not hold specific information on the level of sales of hydrofluorocarbon gases (HFCs) in the UK in each of the last five years. However, a study undertaken by AEA Technology on behalf of DEFRA and the Department for Energy and Climate Change, considers the use and consumption of HFCs in the UK in all sectors where emissions occur, including the refrigeration and air conditioning sectors. This study revalidates and updates historic consumption, and provides an estimate of emissions through to 2050. A copy of the study is available on the DEFRA website at:
Angie Bray: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs if she will take steps to ensure that the public is made aware of the slaughter method used for meat sold by food retailers; and if she will make a statement. 
Mr Paice: I appreciate that this is an issue which people feel strongly about and we will be working with interested groups to find a way to address their concerns. People should know what they are buying in shops and when they are eating out, and I will be discussing with the food industry whether labelling and point of sale information can play a greater role in giving consumers a choice.
Mark Pritchard: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what steps she is taking to maintain the habitat of wild otters. 
Richard Benyon: Pollution control and river management works carried out by the Environment Agency with water companies, wildlife trusts, local rivers trusts and riparian landowners have helped to improve water quality and habitat structure in many rivers in England and Wales.
Further habitat improvement and pollution prevention work, including land management incentives to tackle diffuse pollution, will help to make further improvements to the ecological status of rivers over the next few years. This should allow otters to continue their recovery, which has already seen an increase from occurrence at 5.8% of river sites in 1977-79 to 58.8% in 2009-10.
Bob Russell: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs if she will make it her policy to sign the European Convention for the Protection of Pet Animals. 
Mr Paice: We have no current plans to sign the Council of Europe Convention for the Protection of Pet Animals. The Animal Welfare Act 2006 means that our laws are already consistent with the principles set out in the convention. However, we continue to have concerns about some of the convention's detailed provisions.
Paul Flynn: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what reasons have been identified for the increase in gamma radiation levels recorded by the Radioactive Incident Monitoring Network radiation monitor at Odiham between noon and 3pm on 4 August 2010. 
Charles Hendry: I have been asked to reply.
During the period 13:00 hrs to 15:00 hrs on 4 August 2010 a severe electrical storm was present in the Odiham area and indications are that this affected the power supply to the RIMNET monitor on the Odiham site causing it to give abnormal readings which were recorded by the RIMNET system. The original probe, while not faulty, has been replaced as a precaution.
Mrs Grant: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs what support her Department gives to rural communities for the maintenance and improvement of village halls and community centres. 
Richard Benyon: DEFRA currently funds the Rural Community Buildings Load Fund which is managed by Action with Communities in Rural England (ACRE). This provides low cost loans to the sector, enabling communities to keep their buildings in a good state of repair. The funding of Community Halls dates back to the late 1930s. The current provision for this rolling fund stands at £700,000.
Additionally, DEFRA committed a total of £45,000 in funding over three years, from 2008-09 until 2010-11, towards research of the latest village hall survey. This was part of a package of support to fund Rural Communities Action Network (RCAN) for supporting rural communities as part of Community Empowerment and Rural Partnership Programme. The national rural community buildings survey is probably the most comprehensive information source on community-owned buildings, and provides detailed information on their physical state, financing, use and governance. In particular, some of the data were used by the Big Lottery to help make the case for the recently announced new Big Lottery Reaching Communities Programme for the extension and refurbishment of halls.
Mr Sanders: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs if she will bring forward legislative proposals to amend the Conservation of Seals Act 1970 to enhance the legal protection of seals. 
Richard Benyon: The Protection of Seals Act 1970, in combination with other legislation, provides appropriate protection for seals in England. It provides a proportionate balance between the conservation of the seals and the needs of those impacted upon by individual problem seals.
However, DEFRA has submitted wildlife conservation and protection legislation as an area for potential review by the Law Commission under its Regulatory Reform Programme.
Zac Goldsmith: To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs pursuant to the answer to the hon. Member for Brighton Pavilion (Caroline Lucas) of 19 October 2010, Official Report, column 634W, on sustainable development, what discussions she has had with the Chancellor of the Exchequer on steps to ensure that sustainable development is fully embedded into the Treasury's Green Book. 
Mr Paice: DEFRA's Structural Reform Plan, agreed with the Prime Minister, commits us to produce guidance to ensure that sustainability and the value of nature are taken into account in policy appraisal. My officials are working closely with Her Majesty's Treasury and the Government Economic Service members across Whitehall to ensure the recommendations of the DEFRA-led Review of the Economics of Sustainable Development are implemented. This includes work to improve the way we take account of environmental impacts in policy appraisal. The Government expect Parliament will play a major role in holding it to account in achieving this.
Economists and social researchers from DEFRA are taking a lead role in the cross-government Social Impacts Task Force (co-chaired by DEFRA's Chief Economist),
which aims to ensure that analysts across Government are more systematically and consistently assessing social impacts, which was a recommendation of the Review. The Task Force's remit includes developing guidance to help departments assess the social impacts of Government policies; and highlighting the importance of social impacts and wellbeing indicators in cost benefit analysis and impact assessment of policies. One of the outputs produced by the taskforce will include developing supplementary guidance on social impacts.
Mr Burley: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change whether his Department plans to implement mandatory reporting of carbon emissions for UK-listed companies. 
Mr Paice: I have been asked to reply.
I refer my hon. Friend to the answer given to the hon. Member for Hartlepool (Mr Wright) 27 October 2010, Official Report, column 319W.
Mr Watson: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change what departmental policy reviews his Department has undertaken since 6 May 2010; on what date each such review (a) was announced and (b) is expected to publish its findings; what estimate he has made of the cost of each such review; who has been appointed to lead each such review; to what remuneration each review leader is entitled; how many (i) full-time equivalent civil servants and (ii) seconded staff are working on each such review; from which organisations such staff have been seconded; and how much on average such seconded staff will be paid for their work on the review. 
Gregory Barker: DECC has undertaken the following reviews since 6 May 2010:
|Review||Date announced||Date findings due to be published||Estimate of total cost of review||Appointed reviewer and remuneration||Number of FTE civil servants working on review||Number of seconded staff and average cost|
The reviews are financed through the Department's general budgets and no specific budget has been allocated to them.
The reviews are both led by Department of Energy and Climate Change staff. DECC staff leading reviews have been recruited from within the Department and would not be entitled to further payments for their work in addition to their salary.
Ongoing review of CRC scheme being under taken as announced in 2009 consultation.
Ongoing (we announced in 2009 that we would keep this under review)
|(1) (Ernst and Young LLP) paid by DECC within the Grade 7 salary band, £46,975-£56,597. As this seconded member of staff is below the senior civil service grade the actual amount paid to them is withheld under section 40 of the Freedom of Information Act.|
(2) Secondee (Deloitte) paid by DECC within the Grade 7 salary band, £46,975-£56,597. As this seconded member of staff is below the Senior Civil Service grade the actual amount paid to them is withheld under Section 40 of the Freedom of Information Act.
Graeme Morrice: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change what the production price per kWh is for each major electricity generating technology method. 
Charles Hendry: The following tables are taken from Mott Macdonald (2010) and give levelised cost estimates (average generation cost per megawatt-hour) for new build plants in the main large-scale electricity generation technologies in the UK, including onshore wind, offshore wind and nuclear, at current engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) contract prices.
Where technologies are emerging, costs are given on a First-of-a-Kind (FOAK) basis, which includes a cost premium associated with early projects.
|Case 1: 10% discount rate, 2009 project start at today's EPC prices, with mixed FOAK/NOAK|
|Levelised cost||Gas CCGT||Gas CCGT with CCS - FOAK||ASC coal||ASC coal with CCCS - FOAK||Coal IGCC - FOAK|
|Levelised cost||Coal IGCC with CCS - FOAK||Onshore wind||Offshore wind - FOAK||Offshore wind R3 - FOAK||Nuclear PWR FOAK|
Mott Macdonald (2010), UK electricity generation costs update, available at:
The following are the levelised costs per MWh for projects started in 2017. They are all given here on the basis of Nth-of-a-Kind (NOAK) meaning it is assumed that all technologies have matured and there has been a cost reduction through learning. For some technologies this is expected to result in a reduction in costs.
|Case 2: 10% discount rate: 2017 project start at projected EPC prices, all NOAK Coal|
|Levelised c ost||Gas -CCGT||Gas - CCGT with CCS||ASC Coal||ASC Coal+CCS||Coal IGCC||Coal - IGCCC with CCS||Onshore Wind||Offshore Wind||Offshore Wind R3||Nuclear - PWR|
It should be noted that the estimates of levelised costs for different types of electricity generation are highly sensitive to the assumptions used for capital costs, fuel and European Union Emissions Trading Scheme allowance prices, operating costs, load factor, and other drivers. Meaning that there is significant uncertainty around these estimates.
The levelised costs reflect only the cost of power generation and its delivery to the grid. They do not reflect the availability to certain technologies of subsidy such as Renewables Obligation Certificates.
Graeme Morrice: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change whether he has discussed with the devolved administrations his proposals for replacement of current nuclear electricity generation. 
Charles Hendry: The Government have discussed and, where appropriate, consulted with the devolved Administrations throughout the development of the new nuclear programme.
Dr Whitehead: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change how many tariffs from energy supply companies were available to consumers in each of the last six months. 
Charles Hendry: DECC does not hold the information requested. To meet its principal duty, to protect the interests of consumers, Ofgem collects relevant information but I understand it does not have the specific data requested. However, Ofgem are able to provide details of the number of tariffs available to a new domestic gas, electricity and dual fuel customer based on a snapshot of 1 November 2010(1). The following table excludes: social tariffs; any tariffs that were closed to a new customer as at 1 November 2010; and tariffs offered by suppliers other than the main six energy suppliers. The majority of tariffs are available in each region. In some cases, tariffs may have the same price and payment method-but there could be differences in service options such as loyalty scheme points, vouchers or donations to different charities turning a single price and payment plan into multiple options.
(1) The tariff data were provided by Energy Services Online Limited:
|Total number of tariffs available to a new customer in the average region, across main six energy suppliers|
Christopher Pincher: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change if he will bring forward proposals for minimum standards for energy tariffs which include a requirement for energy suppliers to (a) give notice of a month prior to a customer's deal coming to an end and (b) provide information on the tariff to which such customers will be transferred in circumstances in which they do not switch tariffs before the expiry of their deal. 
Charles Hendry: The Energy Security and Green Energy Bill will include measures to improve energy efficiency and energy security, measures to enable low carbon generation and measures to clarify liabilities and responsibilities. We have no plans to include the very specific measures the hon. Member asks about.
In circumstances where a domestic customer will become subject to a deemed contract when an existing contract ends, Ofgem already requires energy suppliers to give the domestic customer details of the deemed contract terms 30 working days in advance of the date the existing contract is due to end.
Simon Hart: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change if he will discuss with suppliers of fixed liquid petroleum gas supplies on communal contracts the provision of variations to such contracts in order to enable individual domestic consumers to withdraw from them. 
I met on 4 November with representatives from UKLPG, the trade association which represents liquid petroleum gas suppliers. As part of the meeting, I discussed with them communal contracts and the provision of variations to such contracts in order to enable individual domestic consumers to switch
supplier. I asked them to consider what more could be done to improve the functioning of the market.
The Office of Fair Trading will continue to monitor the market and do all they can to ensure that consumers can exercise their right to switch supplier.
Dr Thérèse Coffey: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change if he will extend the price protection rules applicable to gas and electricity resellers to cover the maximum price allowed to be charged by resellers of liquid petroleum gas to (a) customers in mobile home parks and (b) other customers. 
Charles Hendry: The Maximum Resale Price (MRP) rules apply to the re-sale of gas and electricity within the regulated energy market. Under competition and consumer law, consumers have protection under the "Supply of Goods and Services Act" and "Unfair Terms in Consumer Contracts Regulations". The Office of Fair Trading and the Competition Commission are responsible for enforcement of competition and consumer law.
Tessa Munt: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change whether he has issued guidance to Ofgem on its duty to have regard to the purposes of national parks and areas of outstanding natural beauty. 
Charles Hendry: The Government have not issued Ofgem with guidance on these particular issues, although it has done so on wider social and environmental issues. Ofgem does, however, have a statutory duty to have regard to effects on the environment in carrying out its functions.
Philip Davies: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change what (a) financial and (b) other sanctions the EU institutions are entitled to impose on member states who do not meet the 15 per cent. renewables target. 
Charles Hendry: Directive 2009/28/EC (the renewable energy directive) imposes a duty on the UK to ensure that its share of energy from renewable sources in gross final consumption of energy in 2020 is at least 15%.
If the Commission considers that a member state has failed to meet its obligations under the directive it will raise the issue with the member state concerned, giving the member state the opportunity to submit its observations. The Commission may then deliver a reasoned opinion requiring the member state to bring itself into compliance within such period of time as the Commission may specify. Should the member state dispute or fail to comply with the reasoned opinion, the Commission can bring infraction proceedings against the member state in the Court of Justice of the European Union.
If the member state fails to take the necessary measures to comply with the judgment of the Court of Justice, the European Commission can bring a further set of proceedings against the member state, seeking the imposition of a fine. The court could impose a lump sum fine and a recurring penalty payment which would
apply until the member state complied with the judgment. There is no limit on the size of the fine that the court could impose, but the European Commission has issued guidance on the fines that it would seek (SEC(2005)1658 as updated by SEC(2010) 923/3).
Article 5(2) of the directive provides for a member state to inform the European Commission if it considers that, due to force majeure, it is impossible for it to meet its 2020 target. In the event that the Commission decides that force majeure has been demonstrated, it will determine what adjustment shall be made to the member state's levels of renewable energy for the year 2020.
David Morris: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change what assessment he has made of the cost per unit to the public purse of producing energy through (a) the Severn Barrage and (b) onshore wind farms. 
Charles Hendry: The Severn Tidal Power feasibility study did not compare the costs of a scheme to onshore wind but used a range of other low-carbon generating technologies as comparators (offshore wind, coal with carbon capture and storage, and nuclear). No assessment was made of the potential cost of Severn tidal power to the public purse, as the study did not propose a funding or delivery mechanism.
The feasibility study also calculated levelised generation costs for five potential Severn power schemes. These can be compared to recent estimates of levelised costs for onshore wind to give an indication of the relative cost of the technologies, as set out in the following table. All Severn scheme costs exclude the costs of Compensatory Habitat provision and any adjustment for Optimism Bias.
|Technology||Levelised cost of generation, 10% discount rate (£/MWh)|
Severn scheme costs from Severn Tidal Power feasibility study Impact Assessment.
Onshore Wind costs from Mott MacDonald, "UK Electricity Generation Costs Update", June 2010, p87.
David Morris: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change what assessment his Department has made of the effect of not proceeding with plans for the construction of a Severn Barrage on the number of onshore wind farms to be constructed in the next 10 years. 
The UK Renewable Energy Strategy (2009) sets out the Government's assessment of the potential contribution of different renewable energy generating technologies towards the UK 2020 renewable energy target. This assessment did not assume that a Severn tidal power scheme would contribute to meeting the target. As such, the Government's decision not to bring forward such a scheme has had no effect on the
assessment of the potential amount of onshore wind that will be delivered by 2020.
Graham Stringer: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change what steps he is taking to ensure that individual installed heat pumps are certified as meeting the required average seasonal performance factor as defined in annex VII of the use of energy from renewable sources directive 2009/28/EC. 
Gregory Barker: I refer the hon. Member to the answer I gave my hon. Friend the Member for Richmond Park (Zac Goldsmith) on 4 November 2010, Official Report, column 890W. The method for determining the average seasonal performance factor will feature as part of the European Commission's guidance, as required under the renewables directive. Certification will be crucial, and we will be seeking views on our approach to certification in our forthcoming consultations on our microgeneration strategy and on the renewable heat incentive regulations.
Mr MacNeil: To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change what estimate he has made of the likely generation capacity of (a) on-shore and (b) off-shore wind energy in respect of Na h-Eileanan an Iar in the next (i) five and (ii) 10 years. 
Charles Hendry: DECC does not make assessments of generation capacity in respect of individual areas such as Na h-Eileanan an Iar. Decisions on where to site wind farms are ultimately a matter for developers and planning authorities.
However, it is clear that Scotland will play a significant role in delivering the wind projects that we need to meet our 2020 renewable energy targets.
19. Stephen Gilbert: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what recent assessment he has made of the adequacy of the condition of single living and service families' accommodation. 
Mr Robathan: Over 95% of service family accommodation properties in the UK are currently at the top two standards for condition with some 41% of single living accommodation bed-spaces at the top two condition grades.
The Government place a high priority on the welfare of service personnel and their families and will therefore seek to improve accommodation from efficiencies within the Ministry of Defence.
20. Tom Blenkinsop: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what assessment he has made of the effect of his proposed reductions in service personnel on the UK's military capability. 
Dr Fox: Changes to our future forces will ensure they retain their geographical reach and ability to operate across a spectrum from high-intensity intervention to enduring stabilisation activity. We will ensure we retain appropriate skills and maintain a coherent mix of trained and experienced personnel for the future.
21. Dr Poulter: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what role the armed forces have in supporting the provision of humanitarian aid in Afghanistan; and if he will make a statement. 
Nick Harvey: The UK armed forces play an important role in supporting the provision of humanitarian aid in Afghanistan including through the UK-led Helmand Provincial Reconstruction Team.
The team has approximately 260 staff, around half of whom are military, provided by the UK, US, Denmark and Estonia. The role of the team is to help the Afghan Government improve their governance, services and security in Helmand.
22. Nicholas Soames: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what role the National Security Council has in ensuring closer working between his Department and other Government Departments. 
Dr Fox: We set up the National Security Council to direct a fully co-ordinated Government response to the dangers we face. It integrates at the highest level the work of defence, foreign, home, energy and international development Departments, and all other arms of Government contributing to national security. It has successfully led the work on the Strategic Defence and Security Review and will see through its implementation.
23. Grahame M. Morris: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what recent discussions he has had with the German Government on the return of service personnel from Germany. 
Dr Fox: I have written to the German Defence Minister, informing him of our aim to return half our personnel from Germany by 2015 and the remainder by 2020. I also reassured him that we will work closely with him to minimise the effects of our withdrawal and to maintain our close security and defence partnership. In addition my ministerial colleagues and officials maintain regular dialogue with their counterparts.
24. Alun Michael: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what plans his Department has for the defence technical college at MOD St Athan. 
Following the announcement on 19 October 2010 to terminate the Defence Training Rationalisation procurement, work has now begun on
alternative options for the future defence technical training solution. The St Athan site remains an option for consideration.
Karl Turner: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what discussions he has had on compulsory redundancies from the armed forces as a result of the outcomes of the strategic defence and security review. 
Dr Fox: I refer the hon. Member to the answer I gave earlier today to the hon. Member for Scunthorpe (Nic Dakin).
Nicholas Soames: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence to which countries in Africa British military attachés are posted. 
Nick Harvey: There are British defence attachés in Algeria, Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), Egypt, Ethiopia, Ghana, Kenya, Morocco, Nigeria, Sierra Leone, South Africa, Sudan, Uganda and Zimbabwe.
Mr Ainsworth: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what plans he has for the future of the RAF bases at (a) Kinloss and (b) Lossiemouth; when he plans to make a decision on their future; and if he will make a statement. 
Nick Harvey: As detailed in the Strategic Defence and Security Review White Paper the decisions to not bring Nimrod MRA4 into service, retire the Harrier Force and reduce the size of our Tornado fleet, will mean that Kinloss and two other bases will no longer be required by the RAF. No decisions have yet been made on which other two bases will be affected, or on any future use of the bases, although it is possible that some of the estate vacated by the RAF will be used by units returning from Germany or retained for other Defence purposes.
Given the significant work required on our overall basing plan, it is unlikely that any final decisions on RAF basing or future Defence use of those bases will be taken before the end of the first quarter of next year.
Oliver Colvile: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what assessment he has made of the effect of the outcomes of the Strategic Defence and Security Review on mental healthcare provision for service personnel. 
Dr Fox: I refer the hon. Member to the answer I gave earlier today to the hon. Members for Enfield, Southgate (Mr Burrowes) and Croydon South (Richard Ottaway).
Mr Ainsworth: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what plans his Department has for the facilities already established for service training at MOD St Athan. 
Nick Harvey: Following the cancellation of the Defence Training Rationalisation private finance initiative, the initial works contracts already under way at Ministry of Defence St Athan will continue. Work to secure East Camp on health and safety grounds and to permit efficient management of the site over the next five years will be undertaken. The moves of No. 4 School of Technical Training, the University of Wales Air Squadron, and the Defence Support Group into other areas of East Camp will continue as planned.
MOD St Athan was previously chosen as the best location on which to collocate technical training for good reasons, and it remains an option for future defence training.
Paul Flynn: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence pursuant to the answer to the hon. Member for Brighton Pavilion of 15 June 2010, Official Report, column 351W, on nuclear weapons: (a) on what date and (b) at which location the 2010 stocktake meeting between the Government and the US administration under the 1958 Mutual Defence Agreement took place; and if he will place in the Library a copy of the programme for the meeting. 
Peter Luff: The 34th meeting of the UK/US Stocktake was held in the US Department of Energy, Forrestal Building, Washington DC on 15 September 2010. The programme comprised discussions on nuclear threat reduction, warhead, and platform issues, together with a consideration of future exchanges.
I am withholding a copy of the programme for the purpose of safeguarding national security.
Mr MacShane: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what proportion of gross domestic product (a) was allocated to his Department in funding in each year since 2000 and (b) he expects to be so allocated in each year to 2015. 
Dr Fox: Data on UK Defence spending as a proportion of GDP are collected and published by NATO in order to allow comparisons between NATO countries.
Data from 2000 are shown in the following table.
|UK Defence spend proportion of GDP|
The figures that the Ministry of Defence (MOD) provide to NATO are for Defence expenditure, as detailed in their instructions. This definition includes the MOD's core budget along with the cost of operations, pensions and Armed Forces Compensation Scheme payments made to ex-military personnel, and non-budget costs.
The specific percentage of GDP in future years will be dependent on the actual spend in those categories that are in addition to the Defence budget. The MOD has forecast, however, that spending on Defence as a percentage of GDP will continue to meet the NATO target of 2% over the spending review period.
Angus Robertson: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many search and rescue missions were flown from RAF Kinross using MR2 aircraft in March 2010; and what the (a) distance and (b) duration was of each such mission. 
Nick Harvey: Two search and rescue (SAR) missions were flown by MR2 aircraft from RAF Kinloss in March 2010. The distance and duration of each mission is shown as follows. The distances are in nautical miles from RAF Kinloss to the SAR task and do not represent the total distance flown. The durations relate only to the actual search and rescue mission.
|Distance (nautical miles)||Duration (hours/mins)|
Angus Robertson: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many search and rescue missions were flown using C130 aircraft in the last five years; what the (a) distance and (b) duration was of each such mission; and from where each aircraft was dispatched. 
Nick Harvey: One search and rescue mission was flown by a C-130 Hercules aircraft in the last five years.
The distance provided in the following table is nautical miles from RAF Lyneham to the search and rescue task and not the total distance flown. The duration is that of the actual search and rescue mission.
|Departure location||Distance NM||Duration (hours/mins)|
Angus Robertson: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence on how many occasions life-rafts and survival containers have been deployed during a search and rescue mission by (a) C-130 and (b) Nimrod MR2 in each of the last three years; and what the (i) distance and (ii) duration of the mission was in each case. 
Nick Harvey: There is no record of this equipment having been deployed by either aircraft during a search and rescue mission over the last three years.
Mr Jenkin: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what account his Department took of (a) defence inflation, (b) unforeseen design risks and (c) changes in specification between 2010 and 2016 in identifying cost savings in the Trident value for money review. 
Dr Fox: Projected inflation in relevant sectors was considered and treated in the normal way as part of the value for money work. Due consideration was given to unforeseen design risk and changes in specification through the application of uncertainty margins.
Mr Carswell: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence if he will direct the British Embassy in Washington to amend the remit of any renewed contract for political consultancy services with O'Brien and Associates so as to exclude any requirement to influence procurement decisions. 
Peter Luff: O'Brien and Associates have not been contracted to influence US or UK procurement decisions on behalf of the British embassy. O'Brien and Associates provide specialist advice and information on major US defence equipment programmes and relevant budget issues, principally as they pass through Congress. The current contract expires in December 2010 and the embassy will determine whether these services are required beyond this period. In the event that a new contract is required, the schedule of requirements will continue to exclude any requirement to influence procurement decisions.
Mr Frank Field: To ask the hon. Member for Middlesbrough, representing the House of Commons Commission, for what reasons the Administration Committee has published a call for specialist advisers for its inquiry into catering services in the House of Commons. 
Sir Stuart Bell: The Commission does not have responsibility for the decisions of the Administration Committee. The hon. Member may wish to write to the Chair of that Committee.
Jon Trickett: To ask the Prime Minister on how many occasions the Childhood and Family Task Force has met to date; and who attended each such meeting. 
The Prime Minister: The Childhood and Families Task Force was created in June 2010. The role of this group is to identify and prioritise a small number of specific policy proposals that will make the biggest difference to children and families. It is longstanding Government practice not to disclose information relating to ministerial meetings, including the proceedings of the Cabinet and Cabinet committees, as to do so would put at risk the public interest in the full and frank discussion of policy by Ministers.
Ian Austin: To ask the Prime Minister how much was spent on hospitality for events he hosted in (a) September and (b) October 2010. 
The Prime Minister: Information on official and charity receptions held at 10 Downing street is published by means of an annual list as soon as it is ready at the end of the financial year.
Mr Carswell: To ask the Prime Minister if he will make it his policy to ensure that any new EU Treaty does not include the UK in the new legal framework referred to in paragraph 34 of the Report of the Task Force to the European Council on Strengthening Economic Governance in the EU. 
The Prime Minister: I refer the hon. Member to the answer I gave on 1 November 2010, Official Report, column 621.
Jeremy Corbyn: To ask the Prime Minister whether he has discussed the human rights situation in Burma with the US President. 
The Prime Minister: The British Government are deeply concerned about the human rights situation in Burma. We regularly urge the military regime to respect the human rights of all Burma's people and discuss these issues with a full range of international partners. I look forward to discussing Burma with President Obama. I know that he shares my concern about the situation there. US and UK officials are in regular and close contact in Washington, including with the White House, and on the ground in Burma. The Under-Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, my hon Friend the Member for North East Bedfordshire (Alistair Burt) and Assistant Secretary of State, Kurt Campbell, exchanged views on the subject at a meeting of the UN Secretary General's Group of Friends in September. We will continue to work closely with the US in our efforts to bring positive change to Burma.
Mr McCann: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development whether he has assessed the merits of relocating his Department's London headquarters to enable the savings made on its running costs to be allocated to overseas development assistance. 
Mr Duncan: The Department for International Development (DFID) has two UK headquarters, located in London and East Kilbride. We are transferring 70 posts from our London office to East Kilbride where we have around 500 staff. We will keep under review the potential for further relocations.
Ian Austin: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development how much his Department spent on hospitality for events hosted by each of its Ministers in (a) September and (b) October 2010. 
Mr Duncan: Ministers have not hosted any events in September or October 2010.
Mr Amess: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development which (a) Ministers and (b) officials in his Department will be (i) attending and (ii) speaking at the launch of Euromapping 2010 on 10 November; what (A) direct funding, (B) other support and (C) personnel his Department plans to provide to the launch; whether he plans to impose restrictions on the use of this support; if he will place in the Library a copy of material produced for the launch by his Department; what discussions his Department has had with the Department of Health on the launch; and if he will make a statement. 
Mr O'Brien: No Department for International Development (DFID) Minister will be attending or speaking at the launch of the "Euromapping" 2010 Report on 10 November. DFID participation will be undertaken at official level. DFID has not provided any direct funding, other support or personnel for the launch or produced any material for the launch.
DFID officials have discussed the launch with officials in the Department of Health (DH). No DH Minister is scheduled to attend.
Jo Swinson: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what assessment he has made of the recommendations relevant to his Department's policy responsibilities contained in the Foresight Report on Mental Capital and Wellbeing by the Government Office for Science; if he will ensure that his Department takes steps to promote wellbeing; if he will ensure that his Department's policy development process takes account of psychological research into subjective wellbeing; and if he will make a statement. 
Mr O'Brien: The Foresight Project on Mental Capital and Wellbeing focuses on the mental development and mental wellbeing of people in the UK. The recommendations are therefore not directly relevant to the policy responsibilities of the Department for International Development (DFID), which works overseas. However DFID does support interventions that promote mental capital, including nutrition programmes and programmes to prevent and treat diseases such as malaria that can cause cognitive impairment; and research into how mental health policy and services in developing countries can be improved. DFID also has a number of initiatives to promote the wellbeing of its own staff.
Conor Burns: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what procedures his Department follows to examine the audited accounts of non-governmental organisations and other organisations which it funds before making payments to such organisations. 
Mr Duncan: All civil society organisations that the Department for International Development (DFID) funds are required to have audited annual accounts before any funding is provided.
From 2011, DFID also plans to carry out due diligence checks for all organisations selected for funding through its centrally managed funds for civil society before any funding is provided. This will include funding through Programme Partnership Arrangements (PPAs), the Civil Society Challenge Fund (CSCF) and the Global Poverty Action Fund (GPAF). The due diligence checks will assess: the integrity of the organisation's status and objectives; financial status, viability and capacity (including analysis of audited accounts); the technical capacity to undertake the proposed activities; robustness of operational and commercial systems, process and procedures including compliance with policies, laws and regulations; procurement capability, efficiency and cost-effectiveness; and procedures for managing environmental risks.
Audited accounts will continue to be analysed on an annual basis by the fund manager for the duration of the funding period.
Mark Menzies: To ask the Secretary of State for International Development what schemes his Department has in place to provide students from United Nations Relief and Works Agency schools in Gaza and the West Bank an opportunity to study at UK universities. 
Mr Duncan: The Department for International Development (DFID) does not have any schemes specifically for students from the west bank and Gaza to study at UK universities. There are, however, two schemes to which Palestinian postgraduate students can apply to study in the UK for further qualifications. The Chevening scholarship scheme funded by the Foreign and Commonwealth Office (FCO) provides talented graduates and young professionals from developing countries with the opportunity to develop their leadership skills. The Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (BIS) with the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council fund the Dorothy Hodgkin Postgraduate Awards for outstanding students from the developing world to study for PhDs in high-rated UK research facilities.
To ask the Secretary of State for International Development pursuant to the written ministerial statement of 22 July 2010, Official Report, columns 46-47WS, on St Helena (access), which alternative funding options his Department considered prior to taking its decision on the funding of an airport on St Helena; against which criteria the decision to
provide full public funding from his Department's budget was chosen; and for what reasons alternative options were not chosen. 
Mr Duncan: The Department for International Development (DFID) considered one specific private financing proposal that was received in response to the 2009 public consultation on the St Helena airport. We also commissioned an independent review to determine whether there could be any other public private partnership (PPP) approaches that could be appropriate for financing the project.
We were looking for a viable solution that would not only make the project more affordable in the short-term, but also deliver the project more efficiently by transferring risk from DFID to the private sector.
The review concluded that a PPP approach would give limited scope for further risk transfer from the current Design, Build and Operate approach. Although a PPP approach could avoid the need for large up-front Government financing, it would do so on more costly terms, and therefore would be unlikely to deliver further value for money compared to the grant-funded approach.
We want to provide a permanent, economically viable solution to the problem of access to St Helena. Independent analysis has concluded that, providing certain conditions are met, the best long-term solution from an economic and financial perspective for both the UK Government and St Helena is to construct an airport.
Valerie Vaz: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what assessment he has made of the likely effects on children of the implementation of proposed changes to the budget for social housebuilding. 
Grant Shapps: In the comprehensive spending review we announced almost £4.5 billion investment in new affordable housing to deliver up to 150,000 affordable homes. However, we are giving housing associations much more flexibility on rents and use of assets, and our aspiration is to deliver even more homes through our investment and reforms. We will publish details of how these proposals will work shortly. A further £2 billion will be provided for the Decent Homes programme which will improve the quality of life of those children living in poor quality social housing.
Mr Evennett: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government how many affordable homes were built in (a) the London borough of Bexley and (b) Greater London in each of the last five years. 
Andrew Stunell: The information requested is provided in the following table.
Not all affordable housing is provided through new-build completions as supply can also come from the acquisition and refurbishment of private sector homes. In 2009-10, for example, a total of 280 additional affordable homes were provided in Bexley and 13,570 in London.
|New-build additional affordable homes delivered|
| Note: The data are rounded to the nearest 10 homes. Source: Homes and Communities Agency; local authorities.|
Mrs Grant: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what recent steps he has taken to increase (a) the availability of and (b) access to affordable housing in rural areas. 
Grant Shapps: In the CSR we announced almost £4.5 billion investment in new affordable housing to deliver up to 150,000 affordable homes. However, we are giving housing associations much more flexibility on rents and use of assets, and our aspiration is to deliver even more homes through our investment and reforms.
On 18 October we called on local planning authorities in rural areas, with high demand for affordable homes, to consider amending their existing planning policies to make it easier for disused farm buildings to be converted into affordable homes. In addition we will be including in the Localism Bill provisions to give local communities new right-to-build powers, enabling them to deliver small-scale development without the need for a separate planning application. By following a simplified neighbourhood planning process, these powers will enable communities to respond quickly to changing development needs.
Mr Amess: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what research his Department has (a) undertaken and (b) evaluated on the causes of anti-Semitism; when his Department last undertook a review of the evidence relating to (i) the causes of anti-Semitism and (ii) the number of anti-Semitic attacks drawing on (A) UK and (B) international research; and if he will make a statement. [R] 
Andrew Stunell: In the last 18 months the Department for Communities and Local Government funded the European Institute for the Study of Contemporary Antisemitism (EISCA) to research and publish a report on Antisemitic Discourse. The Cross-Government working group to tackle anti-Semitism meets on a quarterly basis to discuss and review the evidence emanating from the UK and abroad relating to the causes of anti-Semitism in the UK and regularly reviews the number of anti-Semitic incidents.
Guto Bebb: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government whether he plans to consult on whether local authorities should be able to levy fees in respect of their licensing functions relating to the Caravan Sites and Control of Development Act 1960. 
Grant Shapps: The Department has no plans at present to consult on this.
Guto Bebb: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government whether he plans to consult on proposals to reform the Caravan Sites and Control of Development Act 1960 in respect of the management through licensing of standards in residential mobile home and caravan sites. 
Grant Shapps: The Department is looking at a range of measures to help improve the operation and management of those mobile home sites that are poorly managed so as to afford better protection to the residents and the properties they own.
Simon Danczuk: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government whether local authorities have powers to regulate the (a) number and (b) location of charity shops in their areas. 
Robert Neill: Charity shops are not differentiated from other retail outlets for planning purposes. Local authorities will determine the location of shops within their area through the local plan process, which may prescribe zones for retail development. A planning application will need to be submitted to the local authority for a new retail use. Any shop could be converted to a charity shop without the need to apply for planning permission. Charity shops deliver a public benefit by raising funds for worthy causes and putting into use buildings/shops that might otherwise be left empty.
Alison Seabeck: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what estimate he has made of the right-to-buy receipts to be retained by the Exchequer in respect of each local authority where housing stock has been retained in the two years following the introduction of such clawback. 
Andrew Stunell: A table showing our records of the amount due from each local authority that still maintained a housing revenue account on 1 April 2004, to the Exchequer in respect of housing capital receipts they received in the financial years 2004-05 and 2005-06- the first two years after capital pooling was introduced- has been placed in the Library of the House. The majority of these receipts would have been from right-to-buy transactions.
The table indicates whether the local authority was debt-free on 31 March 2004, since housing receipts received from those authorities remain with the Secretary of State, while capital receipts from with-debt authorities go direct to the Exchequer and do not directly fund this Department's spending plans.
Ms Angela Eagle: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government (1) how much funding to meet staff redundancy costs was identified in his Department's settlement letter in respect of the comprehensive spending review; 
(2) what estimate he has made of the number of redundancies arising from the spending reductions proposed in the comprehensive spending review in respect of
(a) his Department, (b) its non-departmental public bodies and (c) other public bodies which are dependent on his Department for funding; 
(3) what estimate he has made of the cost to his Department of staff redundancy in each of the next four years. 
Greg Clark: The Department for Communities and Local Government spending review settlement will require a 33% reduction in administrative expenditure across the core Department and its arm's length bodies by 2014-15. My Department is also managing the closure of the Government office network with effect from 31 March 2011.
All pressures on Departments' budgets were taken into account as part of the spending review and settlements were allocated accordingly. The full costs of redundancies will be met from within the Department for Communities and Local Government's spending review resource DEL- departmental expenditure-limit settlement.
Determining optimal work force reforms in order to live within the Department for Communities and Local Government's spending review resource DEL settlement will be an ongoing process. Detailed decisions regarding the number of redundancies that may be required have yet to be finalised.
Nick de Bois: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government pursuant to the oral evidence taken by the Communities and Local Government Committee on 13 September 2010, HC 453-i, Q109 and Q110, what assessment he has made of the scale of lobbying activity of his Department by EADS; and which public affairs companies have undertaken such lobbying in respect of his Department since his appointment. 
Robert Neill: EADS employs a number of in-house lobbyists. We are aware that EADS has supplemented its resource in this area in recent months by taking on former senior personnel from the fire and rescue sector to lobby for changes to the Government's approach to FiReControl and its relationship with EADS. These efforts include both formal meetings and events, and informal contacts. We are also aware that Good Relations of the Bell Pottinger Group are also undertaking lobbying on behalf of EADS.
I have myself been presented with speculative ideas from EADS that are not in the FiReControl project agreement. However, at the time I made it absolutely clear to EADS that my sole focus for the project was on them delivering the system specified in the project agreement to time, to cost and to quality. To this end, we activated a key milestone in their contract to deliver the main IT system in three control centres by mid-2011. I recommended to EADS that this should be its sole focus on the project too, rather than spending time and money on lobbying.
The FiReControl project, initiated by the last Government, is over-budget and behind schedule. As with all major Government projects it is being reviewed to ensure value for money for the taxpayer. We have been clear that this Government are not prepared to pour any more taxpayers' money into funding EADS's further delays, nor can EADS cut any corners in the
quality of the system it delivers. This Government are committed to ensuring value for money for the taxpayer, improving resilience and stopping the forced regionalisation of the fire service.
Rehman Chishti: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what tax is levied on (a) BT and (b) other companies in respect of the laying of fibre optic cables. 
Robert Neill: BT and other telecom companies are liable for non-domestic rates in respect of any rateable property, including fibre optic cable networks, which they occupy or, if the property is empty, own.
Stephen Mosley: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government in respect of how many incidents involving Chinese lanterns fire crews were called out in each of the last five years. 
Robert Neill: This information is not held centrally and could be provided only at disproportionate cost. Data are recorded only for broader decorations categories and these available data are shown in the table.
Under the previous system of reporting fires, which ended in March 2009, decorations and Christmas trees were a single category (page 48 of the "Fire Data Report Code List (version 5)").
Since 1 April 2009, fire incidents have been recorded using the new Incident Recording System (IRS) in which decorations/cards, and Christmas trees are separate categories (page 75 of "Incident Recording System Questions and Lists (version 1.1)").
Copies of both documents are available in the Library of the House.
|Accidental dwelling fires where decorations (includes Christmas trees) where the item first ignited, England, 2005 to 2009-10( 1)|
|England||2005||2006||2007||2008||April 2009-March 2010( 1)|
Mark Pritchard: To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government if he will publish his proposed reductions in fire authority budgets in cash terms. 
Fire and Rescue Authorities set their own budgets. The Department does not publish information on proposed reductions to budgets but publishes data collected from all local authorities on budget estimates for England in statistical releases for local authority revenue expenditure and financing, which are reported
in cash terms. The latest revenue budget estimates for 2010-11 are published in the "Local Authority Revenue Expenditure and Financing England 2010-11 Budget" which is available on the Department for Communities and Local Government website at:
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