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Sandwell

Volume 505: debated on Wednesday 10 February 2010

To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government if he will set out, with statistical evidence relating as closely as possible to the borough of Sandwell, the effects on that borough of changes to the policies of his Department and its predecessors since 1997. (316475)

The Neighbourhood Statistics Service provides a wide range of statistical information at parliamentary constituency level, taken from the 2001 census and other sources. This service is available on the National Statistics website at:

http://neighbourhood.statistics.gov.uk/

Communities and Local Government statistical publications can be found at:

http://www.communities.gov.uk/corporate/researchandstatistics/statistics/

This includes time series data across the Department's remit at various geographic levels.

Details of research projects commissioned by Communities and Local Government and its predecessors are available from our Research Database (RD) at:

http://www.rmd.communities.gov.uk/

This includes evaluations of key policies.

Over the last year, Communities and Local Government has:

Played a critical role responding to the recession ensuring people, business and communities receive the practical help they need, including: helping people avoid repossession; Real Help Now; supporting the construction industry, critical regeneration projects, jobs through Future Jobs Fund; and businesses with the business rates deferral scheme.

Set in place a platform for greater local devolution for more effective decision making through local area agreements (LAAs)—including slashing central performance standards from over 1,200 to fewer than 200.

Continued building on this through Total Place pilots, leading innovation across public services—cutting out waste, overlap and duplication, meaning more and better quality services at less cost to the taxpayer.

Established the Infrastructure Planning Commission (IPC) set out in the Planning Act 2008—which will make the major Infrastructure Planning decisions for the country, delivering a faster, fairer and more transparent planning regime.

Announced the £1.5 billion Housing Pledge to deliver an additional 20,000 units of affordable housing, creating 45,000 jobs in the construction industry over this year and next, including 1,300 new apprenticeship schemes.

During the period since 1997, the Department's achievements include:

Working with local housing authorities to reduce the number of people accepted as owed a main homelessness duty by 71 per cent. since the peak in 2003—the lowest level since the late seventies—through greater emphasis on the prevention of homelessness.

Launching the Local Government White Paper ‘Strong and Prosperous Communities’ which set out a new stage of public sector reform, significantly strengthening leadership and devolving power to local government as well as providing a major expansion of opportunities for local people to influence local decision-making and improve their lives.

Helping reduce accidental fire-related deaths—the lowest level since 1959.

Reducing by 1.2 million the number of non decent social homes.

Investing through the Neighbourhood Renewal Fund £1.87 billion for England's 88 most deprived local authorities—leading to real positive change.