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The Government, through these initiatives, is providing guidance on standards of discipline in corporate governance and remuneration that will provide a framework for action by market participants, leading to stronger market discipline on the part of boards of directors and shareholders. Neither the work of the FSA or the Walker review is intended to dictate the quantum of remuneration, either for individuals or at the level of groups or institutions. This remains a matter for boards of directors, under the oversight of their shareholders.

Bloody Sunday Inquiry

Question

Asked by Lord Lester of Herne Hill

The Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster (Baroness Royall of Blaisdon): I will write to the noble Lord and a copy of the letter will be placed in the Library of the House.



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Remuneration

Question

Asked by Lord Dykes

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (Lord Young of Norwood Green): The appointment and remuneration of directors is a matter for companies and their shareholders. The Government have consistently made clear the importance of linking pay to performance over the long term and that exceptional rewards for mediocre performance are not in the interests of companies, their shareholders or the UK as a whole.

Sir David Walker's review of the corporate governance of banks and the Financial Reporting Council's review of the combined code on corporate governance are both looking at shareholder engagement with companies. The Government will be paying close attention to their conclusions.

British-Irish Intergovernmental Secretariat

Question

Asked by Lord Laird

The Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster (Baroness Royall of Blaisdon): The cost of the British-Irish Intergovernmental Secretariat is met by two Governments. The total cost to the British Government for the last eight years is shown in the following table. Costs for 1999-2001 are no longer held.

Financial YearBIIGS Costs

2001-02

£554,000

2002-03

£544,941

2003-04

£524,594

2004-05

£590,195

2005-06

£530,096

2006-07

£571,616

2007-08

£673,096

2008-09

£719,997

2009-10

£670,000

2010-11

£670,000

British-Israel Research and Academic Exchange Partnership

Questions

Asked by Lord Janner of Braunstone



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The Minister of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills and Ministry of Defence (Lord Drayson): The results of the first round of applications to the Britain-Israel Research and Academic Exchange Partnership are expected to be announced in the autumn.

Asked by Lord Janner of Braunstone

Lord Drayson: There have been no discussions with the Israeli Government about an expansion of the Britain-Israel Research and Academic Exchange Partnership (BIRAX) scheme. The first academic awards for the scheme are now due to be announced in the autumn.

Broadcasting: Digital Radios

Question

Asked by Lord Laird

The Minister for Communications, Technology and Broadcasting (Lord Carter of Barnes): The Digital Radio Working Group (DRWG)* looked closely at digital audio broadcasting (DAB) current and planned coverage across the UK. One of the key purposes of the work of the group was to provide momentum to encourage digital radio rollout. This has continued with the Digital Britain White Paper.

Figures provided by the DRWG's Spectrum Group at the end of 2008 showed that 87.6 per cent** of the population in Northern Ireland are able to receive DAB. We acknowledge there is a short delay when switching on some DAB radio sets. This is caused by the processor "powering up" in much the same way as a computer does.

There have been discussions between broadcasters and manufacturers about improving the reception of DAB sets. I expect this to continue in the future to improve the reception of sets further.

Building Regulations

Question

Asked by Baroness Greengross



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The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department for Communities and Local Government & Department for Work and Pensions (Lord McKenzie of Luton): The scale of toilet provision in different building types that are workplaces is in the first instance a matter for the Health and Safety Executive's Approved Code of Practice (ACOP) that supports the Workplace (Health, Safety and Welfare) Regulations 1992. The guidance in approved document G (sanitation, hot water safety and water efficiency) therefore makes reference to the need to be in accordance with the minimum levels of provision set out in the ACOP. However, it also explains that further guidance on the provision of toilets is set out in British Standard 6465 for those building types not covered by the ACOP or where someone wishes to provide more than the minimum recommended.

Children: ASBOs

Question

Asked by Baroness Walmsley

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Home Office (Lord West of Spithead): Although the Home Office is not conducting an independent review of anti-social behaviour orders (ASBOs) given to children, a consortium of research institutions have been commissioned to undertake an evaluation of the comparative effectiveness of interventions to address anti-social behaviour.

Results from this evaluation are due to report in 2010. The evaluation will look at anti-social behaviour orders (ASBOs), but does not focus on young people, as we are aware of research being carried out by other research bodies that are looking at the impact of anti-social behaviour interventions on young people.

We have provided written guidance for anti-social behaviour practitioners and a practitioners' advice line manned by experts in the field and website. We have also held a series of workshops around the country to help practitioners make the best use of the tools and powers. In addition, we have also introduced legislation to require a one-year review period for ASBOs on young people which was formally built into best practice in the latest Home Office guidance issued in August 2006. This was implemented on 1 February 2009.

Children: Custody

Question

Asked by Lord Avebury



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The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Ministry of Justice (Lord Bach): We welcome the Prison Reform Trust's report and its contribution to this difficult issue of the numbers of young people being remanded into custody. The decision on whether to grant bail or remand a defendant to custody is one for the courts to make, in each case, in line with the statutory framework primarily set out in the Bail Act 1976. Data provided by the Youth Justice Board indicate that, over the past seven years, there has been a 10 per cent decrease in the number of young people remanded into custody.

Young people remanded in custody or to secure conditions 2002-2008
Year2002200320042005200620072008

Total

5,638

5,513

5,721

5,605

5,512

5,368

5,102

Officials are meeting representatives from the Prison Reform Trust shortly to discuss the report's findings and recommendations and consider how we can take the issues forward.

Children: Independent Representatives

Question

Asked by Baroness Garden of Frognal

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department for Children, Schools and Families (Baroness Morgan of Drefelin): "Parent" under the education Acts includes anyone who has parental responsibility and, for most purposes, anyone who has care of a child. There should therefore be no children without a "parent" with the possible exception of some young people aged 16 and over who are deemed to be capable of defending their own interests, with appropriate support.

For children who are looked after by the local authority (ie who may not have a birth parent who is able or willing to act in their interests), the Government have put in place a range of measures to ensure that their best interests are defended in the education system. The local authority has a specific duty to promote the child's educational achievement. It must also ensure that each looked-after child has a care plan, which must include a personal education plan developed with the designated teacher for looked-after children at the child's school (see below). The plan must be kept under regular review (at least every six months) and an independent reviewing officer (IRO) must be appointed to monitor the review process. The reviews look at the appropriateness of the child's education plan to ensure that it promotes their educational achievement. If the IRO has concerns that the local authority is in breach of its duties to the child or that the child's rights are being breached by the authority or any other person or body (including the child's school), then he has power to refer the child's case to CAFCASS (the Children and Family Court Advisory and Support Service) for consideration of legal proceedings to obtain redress for the child.



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Looked-after children are also entitled to support from an independent advocate when making any complaint or representation about their care, including education provision.

In addition, from September this year, every school must have a designated teacher for looked-after children, who will take responsibility for ensuring that these children's teaching and learning needs are met.

Civil Service: Career Development

Questions

Asked by Lord Judd

The Financial Services Secretary to the Treasury (Lord Myners): Recruitment to all posts in the Treasury is based on the essential and desirable skills and experience as determined by the recruiting manager, and the behavioural competencies relevant to the grade of the post. Career development is based around the requirements of the role, the competencies and the Professional Skills for Government framework.

Members of the international and financial directorate have a broad range of relevant skills, including wide experience in a range of international roles.

Climate Change: Carbon Dioxide Emissions

Question

Asked by Lord Lawson of Blaby

The Minister of State, Department of Energy and Climate Change (Lord Hunt of Kings Heath): (a) The UK greenhouse gas inventory shows that agriculture as a whole accounts for around 8 per cent of UK total emissions in 2007. This includes significant contributions from methane (37.7 per cent of UK total methane emissions) and nitrous oxide (74.4 per cent of UK total nitrous oxide emissions). Direct emissions from the UK livestock sector in 2007 were 2.9 per cent of the UK total emissions.



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(b) Carbon dioxide emissions from the human population in the normal course of breathing are not included in the UK greenhouse gas inventory.

Community Relations: Islam

Question

Asked by Baroness Neville-Jones

The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State, Department for Business, Innovation and Skills (Lord Young of Norwood Green): (a) The following subjects were defined by the Government in a letter from the Secretary of State on 1 December 2004 as strategically important:

Arabic and Turkish language studies and other Middle Eastern area studies, former Soviet Union Caucasus and central Asia area studies;Japanese, Chinese, Mandarin and other far eastern languages and area studies;science, technology, engineering and maths;

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vocationally oriented courses of particular interest to employers in industries that are of growing importance to the UK economy, for example, the cultural and creative industries, and e-skills;courses relating to recent EU accession countries, especially those in eastern Europe and the Baltic.
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