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Revenue and Customs Prosecutions Office

The Attorney-General (Baroness Scotland of Asthal): Parliament is to be notified that HM Treasury has provided approval for a change in the 2007-08 budgetary arrangements of Revenue and Customs Prosecutions Office, to reflect a transfer of voted expenditure from administration to capital.



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RCPO’s administration budget in Resource Departmental Expenditure Limit (DEL) will be decreased by £150,000 from £20,936,000 to £20,786,000, and capital DEL will be increased by £150,000 from £1,800,000 to £1,950,000.

The change will have no effect on the department’s overall DEL, or on its net cash requirement. The impact on resources and capital is set out in the following table.

ChangeNew DEL £’000
VotedVotedTotal

Resource

-150

38,759

38,759

of which:

Administration

-150

20,786

20,786

Budget

-150

20,186

20,186

Near Cash in RDEL

Capital

150

1,950

1,950

Less Depreciation

600

600

600

Total DEL

0

40,109

40,109

† Depreciation, which forms part of resource DEL, is excluded from total DEL since capital DEL includes capital spending, and to include depreciation of these assets would lead to double counting.

The change in the capital provision within total DEL arises from some elements of the provision for an IT transition project, which had been budgeted originally as administration expenditure, being reclassified as capital spend.

Terrorism: Rail and Underground Passenger Screening

Lord Bassam of Brighton: My honourable friend the Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Transport (Tom Harris) has made the following Ministerial Statement.

During 2006, in response to the continuing terrorist threat to the rail network, the Department for Transport carried out passenger screening trials to test the ability of available equipment and dogs to detect explosives, or traces of explosives, in an operational environment.

The London Underground and National Railways (LUNR) passenger screening trials took place at five locations over a six-month period, with the full co-operation of the British Transport Police, Network Rail, London Underground and other stakeholders. Public attitudes surveys were conducted in parallel with the trials. Since then, we have been considering the results of the trials with key stakeholders and the implications for rail security policy.

I am publishing a summary report of the trials on the DfT website, together with five detailed reports on the public attitudes research. Copies have also been placed in the Libraries of the House. We are not publishing detailed reports on the individual trials for security reasons, due to the sensitivity of the information within them.

At the same time, the British Transport Police is announcing enhancements to its current screening capability through the use of X-ray equipment and

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explosives detection dogs capable of screening moving passengers. These enhancements will build on the BTP’s existing measures to screen a proportion of passengers and their bags, with minimal delay.

The enhancements are a direct response to the conclusions from the trials which showed that:

screening equipment and dogs can be effective in the railway environment. However, given the very large passenger flows and thousands of entry points on the UK Rail and Underground networks, 100 per cent airport-style screening is currently not feasible using today's technology; and

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the public recognise the threat to the rail network, and are broadly supportive of the need for security measures, provided that they are proportionate to the threat. However, the public would be unlikely to accept major delays to journeys, and want to ensure that personal privacy is protected.

We will continue to work with the BTP and operators to assess the effectiveness and impact of these new measures and will use this evidence, and that from elsewhere in the UK and abroad, to develop further ways of keeping the travelling public secure using proportionate measures.


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