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8 Oct 2008 : Column WA15



8 Oct 2008 : Column WA15

Written Answers

Wednesday 8 October 2008

Banking: Bad Debts

Baroness Miller of Hendon asked Her Majesty's Government:

Lord Davies of Oldham: The latest corporation tax forecasts were provided in Budget 2008. Updated forecasts incorporating the latest developments in the financial services sector will be provided in the forthcoming 2008 Pre-Budget Report.

EU: Lisbon Treaty

Lord Pearson of Rannoch asked Her Majesty's Government:

The Minister of State, Foreign and Commonwealth Office (Lord Malloch-Brown): The Government believe that the Lisbon treaty is good for the UK and good for Europe. Parliament has approved the legislation to implement the Lisbon treaty in the UK. We do not support either renegotiating the Lisbon treaty or cherry-picking parts of it and implementing them by a different route.

Health: Community-based Services

Earl Howe asked Her Majesty's Government:

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department of Health (Lord Darzi of Denham):High Quality Care for All emphasised the need to move away from block contracts for community services. A dozen local National Health Service development sites are testing out alternative contract currencies for community services that could be used nationally, and which may allow the setting of national tariffs in future. Further details will be contained in Currency and Pricing Options for Community Services to be published later this year.

Health: Directed Enhanced Services

Baroness Cumberlege asked Her Majesty's Government:



8 Oct 2008 : Column WA16

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department of Health (Lord Darzi of Denham): Primary care trusts (PCTs) have always been in charge of commissioning directed enhanced services. Directed enhanced services are underpinned by national directions from the Secretary of State to PCTs. These directions instruct PCTs to commission services to a national specification and standards.

This year the department launched a national commissioning assurance system to hold PCTs to account for their commissioning decisions. PCTs will be assessed by the improvement in local health outcomes, commissioning competencies and organisational governance. The system will allow a clearer national picture of variation in services to emerge. Incentives will be applied to drive all PCTs towards world class levels of commissioning and poorly performing PCTs will be supported to improve, and will ultimately be subject to interventions in line with the NHS performance regime.

House of Lords: Retirement Age

Baroness Thomas of Winchester asked the Chairman of Committees:

The Chairman of Committees (Lord Brabazon of Tara): The retirement age for House of Lords staff is currently 65, except where a short-term extension is agreed on grounds of business need. This policy will be reviewed within the next six months in light of the recent decision by the Civil Service to abolish the retirement age for junior grades and to review the retirement age for senior grades.

Railways: Rolling Stock

Lord Bradshaw asked Her Majesty's Government:

The Minister of State, Department for Transport (Lord Adonis): In its update to the high-level output specification (HLOS) delivery plan, published in July, and available on the Department for Transport website at www.dft.gov.uk/pgr/rail/pi/rollingstock/hlosupdatejuly08, the Department for Transport stated that provision of extra rolling stock for Northern Rail was planned to take place in Phase 3 of this plan.

Discussions with Northern Rail continue on the details of implementation, including the proportion of new-build stock, and stock transferred from other operators.



8 Oct 2008 : Column WA17

Lord Bradshaw asked Her Majesty's Government:

The Minister of State, Department for Transport (Lord Adonis): The Department for Transport is currently in discussion with South West Trains over the delivery of the Government’s high-level output specification capacity targets, which includes additional vehicles.

Roads: Fatal Accidents

Lord Roberts of Llandudno asked Her Majesty's Government:



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The Minister of State, Department for Transport (Lord Adonis): The Highways Agency has provided the data for the A55, M1 and M3 in the table below. There is no accident data recorded for the A55 in 2005 or 2006. The A470 does not have any accident data recorded for the past three years.

Accident YearRoad NumberNo. Fatal AccidentsRoad LengthNo. Accidents Per Mile

2007

A55

1

88.5546

0.011292468

2005

M1

29

198.3474

0.146208118

2006

M1

18

198.3474

0.090749866

2007

M1

20

198.3474

0.100833185

2005

M3

4

61.479

0.065062867

2006

M3

3

61.479

0.04879715

2007

M3

3

61.479

0.04879715

The figures quoted above are an approximation as the data have been calculated by dividing the number of accidents on the road by the length of road.


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