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However, I can advise that the new dual carriageway is being constructed through the site of a rubbish tip in an old quarry at Mount Pleasant in County Louth, in the Republic of Ireland. I am advised that the material that is below the footprint of the road at this location is being processed on site. This is in line with current good practice and in consultation with Louth County Council (the client for the section of the road scheme south of the border, and the local authority with responsibility for matters relating to waste). While suitable material arising from this process is being incorporated in the works south of the border, unsuitable waste material is being removed to a licensed landfill site in County Louth.

As regards the security arrangements for the dual carriageway construction site between Newry and Dundalk, I should advise that, while Roads Service's technical advisers are on site monitoring the construction, this is not normally during the hours of darkness. Security of the site is primarily a matter for the contractor, and in this respect the contractor advises that the site is secured at the end of each day and security personnel are engaged to patrol during the hours of darkness.

Roads: Northern Ireland

Lord Laird asked Her Majesty's Government:

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Lord Rooker: The number of road traffic collisions recorded by PSNI in 2006 is shown as follows:

Injury Road Traffic Collisions involving an agricultural vehicle: 2006*
Number% of total collisions

Fatal Collision



Serious Collision



Slight Collision



Total Injury Collisions



All of these collisions involved an agricultural tractor. The figures are provisional and subject to change.

Source: Central Statistics Unit—PSNI

Roads: Traffic Signs

Lord Bradshaw asked Her Majesty's Government:

Lord Bassam of Brighton: The Government have no plans to reduce the size of road traffic signs generally. Road traffic signs must either meet the requirements of the Traffic Signs Regulations and General Directions 2002, or be authorised by the Secretary of State. Signs indicating a prohibition of motor vehicles are already prescribed in a wide range of sizes. While signs should not be intrusive, they must be conspicuous in order to be effective.

Decisions about the placing of road traffic signs at particular locations are the responsibility of the relevant traffic authority. It would be for the authority to seek special authorisation, if it is considered that there are special circumstances that justify an exceptionally small sign. The merits of any such application would be considered on a case by case basis.

Schools: Rowallane Integrated College

Lord Hylton asked Her Majesty's Government:

Lord Rooker: Rowallane Integrated College operates as an independent school and as such does not receive funding from the Department of Education. The department does not have an assessment of the level of funding for the school. A development proposal for the school to become a grant-maintained school was published for consultation in September 2006 and turned down in January this year. All proposals are considered carefully on their merits.

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Sport: Football Hooligans

Lord Laird asked Her Majesty's Government:

Lord Rooker: The process of creating proposals for the introduction of sports grounds-related public order legislation began in January 2005. Officials from the Department of Culture, Arts and Leisure and the Northern Ireland Office took part in this process. No consultation has yet taken place, but there have been exploratory discussions with the Police Service of Northern Ireland, the Sports Council for Northern Ireland and governing bodies of sports likely to be affected. The process is not complete as Ministers are still considering the proposals.

Sport: Northern Ireland Stadiums

Lord Laird asked Her Majesty's Government:

Lord Rooker: The decision concerning the location of the Government's proposed multi-sports stadium was taken by the former Minister for Culture, Arts and Leisure, Angela Smith MP. This decision was announced in March 2005. However, a future devolved Northern Ireland Assembly would be free to revisit any aspect of the stadium proposal.

Lord Laird asked Her Majesty's Government:

Lord Rooker: The Government are considering providing substantial funding for a multi-sports stadium sited only at the Maze/Long Kesh. No other location in Northern Ireland, including Belfast, is capable of satisfying the Government's key requirements for a multi-sports stadium.

St Andrews Agreement

Lord Laird asked Her Majesty's Government:

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Lord Rooker: In light of the historic agreement between the DUP and Sinn Fein to enter into power- sharing government together from 8 May, the Government introduced legislation to modify the deadline of 26 March for the restoration of devolution as provided for under the Northern Ireland (St Andrews Agreement) Act 2006.

The Northern Ireland (St Andrews Agreement) (No. 2) Act 2007, which received Royal Assent on 27 March 2007, set the new deadline for restoration as 8 May 2007.

Sudan: Darfur

Lord Alton of Liverpool asked Her Majesty's Government:

The Lord President of the Council (Baroness Amos): Humanitarian agencies in Darfur are struggling to deliver vital aid in exceptionally difficult circumstances. The main challenges facing agencies are attacks and banditry, and bureaucratic impediments and harassment by the Government of Sudan. I am encouraged that the concerted lobbying by the UN, UK and others has brought about the joint UN-Government of Sudan communiqué issued on 28 March. This represents an important step forward, undertaking to ease the administrative constraints on humanitarian agencies and reaffirming the Government's commitment to supporting the work, and respecting the neutrality and independence, of humanitarian agencies.

In order to monitor the implementation of the communiqué, a committee has been set up to be co-chaired by the UN and Government of Sudan and includes representatives of the non-government organisations and three observers from the African Union, the Arab League and the donor community. The first meeting will be held in mid-April and we look to this mechanism to ensure that the Government live up to their commitments.

Tourism Ireland

Lord Laird asked Her Majesty's Government:

Lord Rooker: Between 2003 and 2006 Tourism Ireland sponsored around 80 promotional events which had an element of Irish dancing associated with them. During the same period the company sponsored five events which included displays of Scottish dancing. These latter events were aimed at the Scots-Irish community in the southern states of the USA.

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Tourism: Northern Ireland

Lord Laird asked Her Majesty's Government:

Lord Rooker: The NITB is working to complete a cultural tourism action plan which will address best practice in the successful delivery of integrated, sustainable cultural tourism including Ulster Scots. The NITB has also committed to ensuring that more comprehensive information is available through its website.

Cultural tourism will continue to form part of the marketing strategy in the USA and part of the forthcoming Smithsonian Folklife Festival in July 2007.

Ulster-Scots Agency

Lord Laird asked Her Majesty's Government:

Lord Rooker: Department of Culture, Arts and Leisure officials consulted the Ulster-Scots Agency to agree a job specification and job advertisement for the CEO post when it was last advertised.

Lord Laird asked Her Majesty's Government:

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Lord Rooker: Yes. The legal advice is, however, subject to legal professional privilege and will not be laid in the Library of the House.

Lord Laird asked Her Majesty's Government:

Lord Rooker: Since its inception, the Ulster Scots Agency has agreed as required with the Department of Culture, Arts and Leisure job advertisements relating to posts within the organisation.

Lord Laird asked Her Majesty's Government:

Lord Rooker: I have nothing further to add to the Answer I gave the noble Lord on 26 March 2007 (WA250).

Lord Laird asked Her Majesty's Government:

Lord Rooker: The funding for the Ulster-Scots Agency is based on the approved actions in the agency's annual business plans together with associated staffing costs. The budgets awarded to the agency since its creation are shown in the following table:











Lord Laird asked Her Majesty's Government:

Lord Rooker: The Ulster-Scots Agency's annual business plan is compiled taking into account the indicative budget figures.

Lord Laird asked Her Majesty's Government:

Lord Rooker: Indicative budget calculations are based on the current year budget figure with increased allocations based on approved actions in their corporate plans, cost of living increases and the department's best estimate of draft budget proposals. Officials from the sponsor departments and finance departments are involved in the process, along with agency officials who include the indicative budget figure in the business plan. There is full consultation on the agency's corporate and business plans.

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