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Firearms Surrender Compensation Scheme

Volume 588: debated on Monday 30 March 1998

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asked Her Majesty's Government:Whether small calibre pistols handed in under the first compensation scheme for large calibre handguns and the voluntary surrender scheme (1 July to 30 September 1997) will receive the appropriate A, B or C valuation payment where appropriate or only attract the

ex-gratia fixed value payment. [HL1113]

All three identical payment options are available under both the ex-gratia voluntary surrender scheme for small-calibre pistols and the statutory compensation scheme under the Firearms (Amendment) (No. 2) Act 1997, which replaced it.

asked Her Majesty's Government:Why they are amending by hand the standard form letter in response to claimants for compensation under the Firearms (Amendment) Act 1997

ex-gratia payment scheme for small calibre pistols from, "It may be some weeks before we are able to notify you of the outcome", to, "It may be some time before we are able to notify you of the outcome". [HL1114]

The letters were amended in manuscript for a short period following enquiries from some claimants about the meaning of the original wording. The practice has now ceased.

asked Her Majesty's Government:What is the cost to date and the anticipated total cost of (a) computer hardware and (b) computer software for the administration of the 1997 Pistol and Accessories Compensation Scheme; what are the names of the software suppliers and contractors, giving the dates of the awarding of each individual contract; what additional software and data have been purchased, giving dates, costs and names of suppliers; and what software has been purchased with costs from Management and Processors of Claims (MPC) Loss Adjusters. [HL1137]

The cost of the computer system for handling firearms compensation claims is £158,117, made up of £27,101 in hardware costs and £131,016 in software and development costs. All costs include Value Added Tax. The system was procured under the standard Home Office information technology services contract with SEMA Group plc, awarded in 1994. No software has been supplied by Management and Processors of Claims Limited.

asked Her Majesty's Government:What was the total funding to date granted to police forces in:

  • (a) England and Wales and
  • (b) Scotland,
  • for the collection of firearms, ammunition and accessories from firearms dealers and firearm

    certificate holders; what method was used to apportion the funds provided between:

  • (a) constabularies in England and Wales; and
  • (b) constabularies in Scotland;
  • and how much was allocated to each force; and [HL1138]

    What are the costs to each constabulary in (a) England and Wales and (b) Scotland to date of the destruction or disposal of firearms, ammunition and accessories:

  • (a) where the work has been undertaken directly by each constabulary; and
  • (b) where the work has been the subject of a sub-contract, giving the value of the sub-contract in each case. [HL1139]
  • In 1997–98, police forces in England and Wales received a total of £2,905,500 in grant towards their costs of implementing the Firearms (Amendment) Act 1997. The Scottish forces received £535,500 in total. Forces received an average of £67,000 each. In the case of the English and Welsh forces a proportion of the grant was allocated on the basis of the number of estimated handguns in each force area; in Scotland the grants were divided equally between the forces. The methods of allocation were agreed with the Association of Chief Police Officers (ACPO) in the case of the allocations to police forces in England and Wales, and with ACPO (Scotland) and the Scottish Office in respect of the Scottish forces.No reliable record of the actual costs incurred by police forces is currently available.