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Baroness Mallalieu asked Her Majesty's Government:

Lord Williams of Mostyn: As at 8 December, we have received representations about rapid draw lotteries from the following:

Action Research, Addiction Counselling World; Addiction Recovery Foundation; The Anthony Nolan Bone Marrow Trust; Lord Ashley of Stoke (President of the charity Defeating Deafness); Blindcare; Brainwave; Chemical Dependency Centre; Children in Crisis; Children's Unit Appeal (East Somerset NHS Trust); Counsel and Care; Crown Leisure plc; Cystic Fibrosis Trust; Defeating Deafness; Disability Advice and Welfare Network; The Drug and Alcohol Foundation; Lord Elton (Chairman of the DIVERT Trust); The European Children's Trust; Dr. Sue Fisher, Director of the Centre for Research into the Social Impact of Gambling (Plymouth University); The Gaming Board, Help the Hospices; Holiday Care Service; Inter Lotto (UK) Ltd.; Institute of Charity Fundraising Managers; the Lotteries Council; MENCAP; the Methodist Church; National Association for Gambling, Care, Educational Resources and Training (GAMCARE); National Council for Social Concern; National Council for Voluntary Organisations; Osteopathic Centre for Children; Rainbow Trust; The Royal British Legion; St. Ann's Hospice, The Samaritans; Sound Seekers; The Earl of Stockton (on behalf of Chemical Dependency Centre); and Treloar Trust.

In addition we have received letters from nine Members of Parliament and four members of the public.

Verne Prison: Kairos Project

Lord Avebury asked Her Majesty's Government:

Lord Williams of Mostyn: The staff at the Verne prison are encouraged by the preliminary effects that the course has had on the behaviour of prisoners. Vandalism in the dedicated wing has ceased, and the previously high incidence of recorded drug taking and bullying in the wing has fallen away. The project started on 3 April 1997 with a course for 24 prisoners. The second group of 42 prisoners commenced the second course on 16 October. Of the 66 inmates who have been on the course, no prisoner has requested to change his religious registration.

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An independent evaluation study of the Kairos project is underway and the report is expected in early 1998.

Altcourse Prison: Probation Services

Lord Hylton asked Her Majesty's Government:

    How many social workers are currently carrying out the functions of probation officers, without having previous probation training and experience in service.

Lord Williams of Mostyn: Her Majesty's Government are aware of no cases in which probation services are carrying out their functions in this way. We are aware of the decision by the contractors operating Altcourse prison to employ a throughcare manager and three social workers directly rather than use seconded probation staff on throughcare functions. Of the three staff so far appointed, none of whom is yet in post, two have previously worked in a probation service, although not as probation officers.

Lunar House: Immigration Applications

The Viscount of Falkland asked Her Majesty's Government:

    Whether applications to the Home Office at Lunar House, Croydon, for work permit extensions or other immigration documentation may continue to be made on behalf of clients by courier companies rather than by post.

Lord Williams of Mostyn: On 10 November, the public inquiry office at Lunar House restricted its service to personal callers only and ceased to deal with any third party applicants, including couriers, solicitors and other immigration consultants. A guaranteed 24 hour postal service is offered for straightforward urgent applications and is operating satisfactorily.

Households: Projections

Lord Hampton asked Her Majesty's Government:

    Whether they will agree with the previous government that England will need 4.4 million more houses by 2016 than there were in 1991; who worked out the figure of 4.4 million; and what assumptions underlie this figure as to movement of people around the country.

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department of the Environment, Transport and the Regions (Baroness Hayman): The projections, which are for 4.4 million additional households not houses, were published in 1995 in my department's document Projections of Households in England to 2016. They are only one of the factors that regional conferences of local authorities have to take into consideration when advising the Secretary of State on housing requirements in regional planning guidance. We are satisfied that the projections were the best that could be made with the

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available data and that they accurately reflect recent trends. The methodology to produce them has been broadly endorsed by independent inquiries, including the Environment Select Committee of the House of Commons in their Second Report on Housing Need (12 February 1996 HOC11/i/1995/1996/).

Migration assumptions of the sub-national population projections, on which the household projections were based, were initially derived by the Office for National Statistics. They were based on past trends in internal and international migration, from the National Health Service central register (showing movements of NHS doctors' patients), the 1991 census, and the international passenger survey. The Department of the Environment, and the Department of Health consulted local authorities and health authorities on these assumed migration patterns in two consultation phases.

The constraints on the consultation process were that there must be a net balance in internal migration, and net international migration must match the assumptions in national population projections. However, where possible, evidence for alternative local migration patterns, supplied by local authorities, was taken into account.

Seat Belts

Lord Braine of Wheatley asked Her Majesty's Government:

    Whether they will place in the Library of the House copies of any reports produced by them which show the benefits of wearing a rear seat belt.

Baroness Hayman: No government report specifically shows the benefits of wearing a rear seat belt. However, the following reports examine the effects of the earlier legislation on front seat belts:

    The Medical Effects of Seat Belt Legislation in the United Kingdom (Rutherford et al, DHSS 1985); and

    Road Casualties in Great Britain during the first year with seat belt legislation (P. P. Scott and P. A. Willis, TRRL Research Report 9, 1985).

Copies of these reports are in the Library of the House.

Rural Development Commission

Lord Dormand of Easington asked Her Majesty's Government:

    What proposals they have for the future of the Rural Development Commission.

Baroness Hayman: May I refer my noble friend to the Statement about the English regions which I read to the House on 3 December 1997 (Official Report col. 1391), and to the answer I gave to the subsequent question from the noble Lord, Lord Shuttleworth (Official Report col. 1405). We are considering the future of the Rural Development Commission as part of

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the comprehensive spending review. We expect to reach conclusions in the New Year.

Scotland: Education Capital Allocation

Lord Selkirk of Douglas asked Her Majesty's Government:

    Whether they intend to increase or decrease Scotland's education capital budgets in real terms for the next financial year in comparison to this financial year; and what percentage change this represents.

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Scottish Office (Lord Sewel): Local authorities receive most of their capital allocations in the form of a single block consent to cover capital expenditure on education, roads and transport, social work, flood prevention, general services and housing other than council housing. Provision for individual programmes is not separately identified within the single allocation total and local authorities are free to determine their own priorities for capital expenditure on individual programmes. Her Majesty's Government announced on 2 July, as part of the Budget, that an additional £8.9 million this year and £26.7 million in each of the next four years would be made available for capital expenditure on improving the condition of schools in Scotland. It has been made clear to authorities that this should be additional to what they would otherwise have spent on schools. Payment will be under special grant arrangements separate from the usual capital allocation arrangements.

Scotland: Housing Capital Allocation

Lord Selkirk of Douglas asked Her Majesty's Government:

    Whether they intend to increase or decrease Scotland's housing capital budget in real terms for the next financial year in comparison to this financial year, and what percentage change this represents.

Lord Sewel: Net planned provision for local authority capital in 1998-99, at £180 million, remains the same as for 1997-98. Scottish Homes' development programme for 1998-99 will be determined and announced in due course. Shortly after coming into office, the Government announced an extra £1 million this year for the rough sleepers initiative and £2 million this year for a new empty homes initiative. In July, the Government announced an extra £12.5 million this year and an extra £43.7 million next year for measures to improve home energy efficiency and to promote the new housing partnerships initiative. The Government also announced on 3 December that an additional £7 million was being made available for the empty homes initiative in 1998-99. These extra resources demonstrate the high priority which the Government attach to housing in Scotland.

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