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Finance: Banks and Building Societies

Lord Campbell-Savours: asked Her Majesty’s Government:

The Financial Services Secretary to the Treasury (Lord Myners): Neither the Money Laundering Regulations 2007 nor other anti-money laundering and counterterrorist finance legislation require prospective bank or building society depositors to maintain an address in the United Kingdom. Accordingly no assessment of the type described is or has been required or undertaken.

Subject to other relevant legislation, the terms and conditions on which products or services are offered are a matter for firms.

Government: Contractors

Lord Cotter asked Her Majesty's Government:

Which contractors of the Department for Children, Schools and Families do not pay their suppliers within 30 days; and what representations they will make to these contractors about withholding retentions from sub-contractors, in accordance with the Office of Government Commerce's fair payment charter. [HL6123]

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department for Children, Schools and Families (Baroness Morgan of Drefelin): A complete answer to this question could only be provided at disproportionate costs, as my department does not maintain a central record of this information. However, I can say that all the department’s model contracts for purchase contain a clause requiring contractors to make payments within 30 days of receipt of their supplier’s or sub-contractor’s invoice for the purposes of that contract.



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Gulf War Illnesses

Lord Tyler asked Her Majesty's Government:

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Ministry of Defence (Baroness Taylor of Bolton): We are now assessing the US report following its publication on 17 November and will review its contents carefully. The needs of Gulf veterans and their families remain a priority for the Government. In line with our cross-government model of support to veterans, healthcare and social support are provided. Financial support is available to veterans and dependants through MoD War Pensions and Armed Forces occupational pension schemes, when appropriate.

Lord Tyler asked Her Majesty's Government:

Baroness Taylor of Bolton: We are now assessing the US report following its publication on 17 November and will review its contents carefully. In 2003, the Medical Research Council (MRC) undertook a comprehensive review of relevant Gulf veterans’ research, including both UK and overseas studies. The key recommendation of the review was that future studies should focus on improving the long-term health of Gulf veterans with persisting symptoms. The focus of our research effort is, therefore, to identify suitable rehabilitative interventions for those veterans, and a contract has been awarded to a group at Cardiff University, acknowledged experts in this field. Financial support is available to veterans and dependants through MoD War Pensions and the Armed Forces occupational pension schemes.

Gypsies and Travellers

Lord Avebury asked Her Majesty's Government:

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department for Communities and Local Government (Baroness Andrews): In the two-year period leading up to publication of ODPM Circular 1/2006 (Planning for Gypsy and Traveller Caravan Sites) on 2 February 2006, the inspectorate considered a total of 268 appeals relating to Gypsy and Traveller sites, of which 86 (32 per cent) were allowed and 182 (68 per cent) were dismissed.



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In the two-year period following publication of Circular 1/2006, the inspectorate considered a total of 246 appeals, of which a higher proportion 65 per cent (160 cases) were allowed with 35 per cent (86) dismissed.

The inspectorate does not hold information on the number of pitches affected.

Housing Associations: Appointments

Lord Ouseley asked Her Majesty's Government:

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department for Communities and Local Government (Baroness Andrews): The Housing Corporation has a single equality scheme that outlines its arrangements for meeting its specific and general duties for race, disability and gender equality. Its current single equality scheme and previous schemes for race, gender and disability have been developed in partnership with key stakeholders in the sector as well as with the Equality and Human Rights Commission and its predecessors, including the Commission for Racial Equality, the Equal Opportunities Commission and the Disability Rights Commission.

The corporation complies with the Commission for Racial Equality’s guidance for public authorities on ethnic monitoring, and it monitors the profile of its employees. The corporation also sets out its expectations for housing associations to undertake ethnic monitoring in the regulatory code and in its Good Practice Note 8: Equality and Diversity.

The corporation does not monitor the ethnicity of statutory appointees. However, its regulatory framework requires all housing associations to monitor the composition of their board members. Therefore, collection of such data is the responsibility of housing associations.

The corporation requires its impact assessments to identify the potential adverse impacts of any of its relevant policies and practices. Information and data that support the impact assessment process considers a variety of factors, including identified trends, potential barriers and current performance. In all cases, assessments consider the impact of decisions on equality.

Iraq: Visas

Lord Clement-Jones asked Her Majesty's Government:



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The Minister of State, Foreign and Commonwealth Office (Lord Malloch-Brown): Compared with the rest of Iraq, the general security situation in the Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) administered area is relatively benign. There are, however, still isolated attacks within the KRG.

During my recent visit to Iraq, I discussed the current visa operation with the KRG, the Government of Iraq and our ambassador, and the need to reconsider the current limited service. There are ongoing discussions between the Foreign and Commonwealth Office and the UK Border Agency officials on the scope of the visa service in Iraq and our assessment of the security situation.

Ministry of Defence: Starbucks

Lord Laird asked Her Majesty's Government:

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Ministry of Defence (Baroness Taylor of Bolton): Information held centrally by the Ministry of Defence indicates that MoD has no direct contracts with Starbucks for the supply of materials or services.

Northern Ireland Office: Bonuses

Lord Laird asked Her Majesty's Government:

Baroness Royall of Blaisdon: The Northern Ireland Office operates three bonus schemes, details of which were set out in my Answer given on 5 November 2008, Official Report, column WA 69.

In allocating special bonuses, consideration is given to the quality and quantity of work, as well as the circumstances of particular achievements.

For staff at grades D2 to A, individual bonus recommendations are made by line managers, who assess staff against the following criteria: performance against objectives across the reporting year; how the objectives were achieved (the behaviours and attributes displayed); and the circumstances of the achievement.

Bonuses for senior Civil Service staff are awarded in accordance with Cabinet Office guidance.

Northern Ireland Office: Redundancy

Lord Laird asked Her Majesty's Government:



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Baroness Royall of Blaisdon: There have been no redundancies across the Northern Ireland Office in the past three years.

Northern Ireland Office: Staff Numbers

Lord Laird asked Her Majesty's Government:

Baroness Royall of Blaisdon:There are no targets for reducing staff numbers. The department’s administration budget has been cut by 5 per cent year on year from 2008-09 to 2010-11. Administrative budgets have been set in line with these reductions and the necessary savings will be found in a variety of ways.

Northern Ireland Office: Taxis

Lord Laird asked Her Majesty's Government:

Baroness Royall of Blaisdon: Much of the information requested constitutes personal data which, if released, would breach the first principle of the Data Protection Act 1998, namely the fair and lawful processing of personal data. As none of the conditions in Schedule 2 of the Data Protection Act are met to authorise fair and lawful disclosure, the information requested is not available for release.

Northern Ireland: Human Rights Commission

Lord Laird asked Her Majesty's Government:

Baroness Royall of Blaisdon:Decisions on litigation in this case are an operational matter for the Northern Ireland Human Rights Commission, which is independent from Government. The noble Lord may like to write to the chief executive of the Northern Ireland Human Rights Commission on this matter. The Government have no plans to take any action in response to the comments by Lord Hoffman.

I will ask the Chief Constable to write to the noble Lord, in line with the Answer of 5 November (Official Report, col. WA 70) that set out the policy for answering parliamentary Questions regarding external bodies.



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Olympic Games 2012

The Earl of Shrewsbury asked Her Majesty's Government:

Lord Davies of Oldham: The Royal Artillery Barracks at Woolwich was selected as the shooting venue for the London 2012 Games following the International Olympic Committee’s review of the Bid Committee’s applicant file. In August this year, KPMG was commissioned to test and challenge the plans for a number of temporary venues, including Woolwich, to ensure that they continue to represent the best value for money. This work on the shooting venue is ongoing and final decisions are yet to be made by the Olympic Board.

Police: Northern Ireland

Lord Maginnis of Drumglass asked Her Majesty's Government:

Baroness Royall of Blaisdon: The total annual cost of DPPs since their inception in 2002 until the end of March was as follows:

(£,000)

2002-03

£544

2003-04

£4,289

2004-05

£3,276

2005-06

£3,972

2006-07

£3,777

2007-08

£4,234


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