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Lord West of Spithead: Under paragraph 320(6) of the Immigration Rules, a person may be refused entry to the UK, where the Secretary of State has exercised their personal power to direct that a person be excluded.

Information on the number of passengers refused specifically in accordance with paragraph 320(6) of the Immigration Rules, could only be obtained by the detailed examination of individual case records at disproportionate cost.

Immigration: Deportation

Question

Asked by Baroness Warsi

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Home Office (Lord West of Spithead): The data on the number of cancelled deportation over the past five years can be obtained only through detailed examination of individual case files at disproportionate cost.

The chief executive of the UK Border Agency has regularly written to the Home Affairs Select Committee in order to provide all the most robust and accurate information on the detention and deportation of foreign national prisoners. She has advised the committee that there continue to be delays in the deportation process due to last minute legal barriers, obstacles obtaining travel documents and non-compliance.

Immigration: Marriage

Question

Asked by Baroness Warsi

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Home Office (Lord West of Spithead): The "certificate of approval" scheme for deciding whether individuals subject to immigration controls are able to marry in the UK has been in operation since February 2005. Since that time, the following numbers have (a) applied for and (b) been refused permission by the Secretary of State for the Home Department under Section 19 of the Asylum and Immigration (Treatment of Claimants, etc.) Act 2004.



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Year20052006200720082009

No. of cases

13,877

17,962

17,320

18,717

11,461

Year20052006200720082009

No. of cases

1,374

692

571

752

312

Legal Aid

Question

Asked by Lord Laird

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Ministry of Justice (Lord Bach): The increase in the legal aid bill reflects the demand for services and the cost of the provision of those services. The largest area of expenditure is criminal legal aid which accounts for 60 per cent of legal aid expenditure. There has been a significant increase in the number of cases granted criminal legal aid and an increase in the cost of the more complex criminal cases.

A range of measures is being brought forward to control the cost of criminal cases together with a wider reform programme on civil legal aid.

Licensing Act

Question

Asked by Lord Colwyn

The Minister for Communications, Technology and Broadcasting (Lord Carter of Barnes): The Licensing Act 2003 has been in force since 2005 and has motivated a very large number of Parliamentary Questions and items of correspondence. It is not possible to determine precisely which of these is a complaint and which were asking for clarification of licensing law or making some other point, and it would not be a viable use of public money to publish every item. It is hoped that the Department for Culture, Media and Sport, in its responses, has satisfactorily explained the Government's position and the freedom and powers which have been introduced by the Act.



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Licensing: Live Music

Questions

Asked by Lord Colwyn

The Minister for Communications, Technology and Broadcasting (Lord Carter of Barnes): Yes. The Regulatory Reform Committee asked:

"Why could the definition not exclude particularly controversial matters such as extension of licensing hours at sex encounter establishments, extension of existing music or dancing licensing hours beyond 11 pm, and first-time applications to allow playing of music?".

The Department for Culture, Media and Sport responded as follows:

"DCMS has indeed agreed to exclude most alcohol-related variations in response to the concerns of consultees.

In many cases the extension of music and dancing beyond 11 pm, or the addition of the playing of music to a licence, will not fall within the definition of a minor variation. This would be most likely where, for example, the extension would coincide with a pre-existing authorisation to sell or supply alcohol. But there may also be cases in which such an extension could not impact adversely on the licensing objectives, and we would not want these to be excluded from the benefits of the new process".

The new minor variations process will allow licensees to make minor changes to their licences more quickly and cheaply. As this response makes clear, this may potentially include the addition or extension of authorisation for regulated entertainment (such as live music). In all cases, the test of whether a variation is minor is whether it could have an adverse impact on the licensing objectives.

A live music group has been set up by Local Authorities Co-ordinators of Regulatory Services (LACORS) and the Musicians' Union to explain and encourage the use of the new minor variations process for those premises that wish to add live music to their licence. It will also encourage uptake of the existing exemption for incidental music.

Asked by Lord Colwyn

Lord Carter of Barnes: Under the Licensing Act 2003 (the Act), licensing authorities must carry out their functions under the Act with a view to promoting the licensing objectives. These are the prevention of crime and disorder, public safety, the prevention of public nuisance and the protection of children from harm. Public nuisance, in particular, may present a risk to residential amenity.



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The licensing regime under the Act regulates licensable activities (such as the sale by retail of alcohol) by authorising them subject to representations (including representation from local residents) and subject to conditions on the licence or club premises certificate. Although other legislation exists that regulates public nuisance (such as environmental health legislation), this typically addresses problems after they have occurred. The licensing regime regulates potential risks in advance, while allowing the particular circumstances of the premises to be taken into account (including the applicant's own risk assessment and whether existing legislation may be sufficient to mitigate risks). This means, for example, that licence holders have more certainty about what is permitted, and enforcement action is both easier and more rarely required.

Licensing authorities report that simple conditions, such as requirement to close windows and doors, are invaluable in the prevention of public nuisance. More strict conditions or restrictions may be required in certain circumstances. For example, residents of properties physically adjoining licensed premises may benefit from specific noise limits. Likewise, conditions may be attached to a licence to ensure public safety, although the Act does not duplicate health and safety legislation.

Asked by Lord Colwyn

Lord Carter of Barnes: The provision in the Licensing Act 1964 known as the "two in a bar rule", was created before the widespread use of modern amplification. It was widely misunderstood, unpopular with musicians and not widely used. Feedback from local authorities' representatives and members of the public, however, showed that two performers with amplification can create a significant level of public nuisance. It was abolished partly for this reason. Additionally, musicians' representatives argued that, given that an amplified duo could make a great deal of noise, it discriminated unfairly and irrationally against the majority of musicians, who perform in larger groups.

Asked by Lord Colwyn

Lord Carter of Barnes: The latest Alcohol Entertainment and Late Night Refreshment Licensing Bulletin reports as of 31 March 2008 there were an estimated 80,500 premises licences with live music provisions (around 41 per cent of all premises licences).

There were also an estimated 10,900 club premises certificates with live music provisions (around 62 per cent of all club premises certificates).



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NHS: Pharmaceutical Services

Questions

Asked by Earl Howe

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department of Health (Lord Darzi of Denham): We expect to publish draft regulations on the detailed requirements for pharmaceutical needs assessments (PNAs) by early 2010, working with the advisory group whose formation was announced by my right honourable friend the Minister of State (Mr Mike O'Brien) in a Written Ministerial Statement on 18 June 2009, Official Report, Commons; cols. WS 31-32.

We anticipate primary care trusts will reflect in their pharmaceutical needs assessments what contribution community pharmacy can make to support implementation of public health and prevention programmes such as NHS health checks. We do not believe such matters require regulatory action although we will consider this further with the advisory group.

We have received a wide range of representations on our proposals for PNAs which now form part of the Health Bill 2009 and the regulations to implement them, including responses to the consultation last autumn. These will be considered further with the advisory group.

Prisoners: Voting

Question

Asked by Lord Stoddart of Swindon

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Ministry of Justice (Lord Bach): The Government will take into account the views of victims of crime in considering the voting rights of convicted prisoners. The Government launched their second stage consultation on this issue on 8 April, and in order to give a voice to victims of crime, copies of the consultation paper have been sent to organisations such as the Victims Advisory Panel, Victim Support, the Survivor's Trust, Support after Murder and Manslaughter and Women's Aid. It is envisaged that these organisations will reflect in their responses the views of victims of crime and their families.



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Roads: Byways Open to All Traffic

Question

Asked by Lord Bradshaw

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Lord Davies of Oldham): There are no plans to amend the Road Traffic Regulation Act 1984 to provide for a right to appeal to the Secretary of State against a refusal by a local highway authority to make a traffic regulation order. To do so would risk imposing a significant new regulatory and financial burden upon those authorities. Local highway authorities are best placed to judge whether a traffic regulation order would be appropriate in any given circumstances. If an individual wishes to challenge the decision of a local highway authority not to make a traffic regulation order he or she can do so by way of an application for judicial review.

Sir Alan Sugar

Question

Asked by Baroness Warsi

Baroness Crawley: The COI did not manage any advertising or marketing campaigns for National Savings & Investments featuring Alan Sugar.

Smoking

Question

Asked by Lord Laird

Baroness Crawley: The Cabinet Office ensures sickness absence data can be analysed against the International Classification of Diseases (ICD) version 10. However, it is not possible to tell the percentage of civil servants who take time off work each year specifically because of smoking-related illness.


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