Monday 22 June 2009
Farmers will not be required to buy an electronic reader; they can record individual information using a pen and paper. However, should they choose to do so, prices begin at around £400.
Armed Forces: Human Rights
To ask Her Majesty's Government what measures they propose to minimise the endangerment of Armed Forces personnel following the ruling by the Court of Appeal that the European Convention on Human Rights applies to Her Majesty's Armed Forces in all situations. [HL4119]
I refer the noble Lord to the oral Answer I gave on 15 June (Official Report, cols. 838-839) to the noble Lord, Lord Astor of Hever.
I refer the noble Lord to the Answers I gave on 1 June 2009 (Official Report, col. WA 6) and 30 June 2008 (Official Report, col. WA 12) and my letter to him of 18 June 2008, a copy of which has been placed in the Library.
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether, at the town meeting to be held on 3 July, they will ensure that the £10 million funding programme aimed at multi-disciplinary research into insect pollination will be directed at addressing the decline in the honey bee population. [HL4315]
Decisions on what projects will be funded under the insect pollinator initiative will be made by the funders on the basis of whether they fulfil the eligibility criteria, address the issues outlined in the research call and on the basis of their quality. Therefore, it is not possible to predict at this stage what proportion of funds will be allocated to specific areas. A meeting will be held in London on 3 July to launch the call for proposals and further details can be found on the Living With Environmental Change website.
Defra has recently provided increased funding of £4.3 million to bee health. Of this, £2.3 million will be provided to the Food and Environment Research Agency's National Bee Unit over the next two years to implement the first stage of the Healthy Bees plan.
The remaining £2 million is being made available to the insect pollinator initiative on pollinator decline.
Defra has allocated £2 million to the new insect pollinator initiative being developed under the Living With Environmental Change (LWEC) programme. We anticipate proposals on a wide range of important insect pollinator issues will be submitted which may include proposals for research on the native British black bee. However, decisions on what projects will be funded will be made by the funders on the basis of whether they fulfil the eligibility criteria, address the issues outlined in the research call and on the basis of their quality. A meeting will be held in London on 3 July to launch the call for proposals and further details can be found on the LWEC website.
Defra launched its Healthy Bees plan on 9 March which seeks to address the challenges facing beekeepers and is aimed at sustaining honey bees’ health and beekeeping in England and Wales over the next decade.
Additional funding of £2.3 million over the next two years has been allocated to the Food and Environment Research Agency's National Bee Unit to implement the first stage of the plan. These funds will be targeted at gaining a more accurate picture of the health of honey bee colonies and developing an enhanced education programme to drive up husbandry standards and disease awareness.
Our improved understanding of the national position will allow the development of a new robust disease control and surveillance programme for implementation from 2011 onwards. Scotland and Northern Ireland are developing their own strategies reflecting the different structures and agencies involved.
Blackburn Diocese Board of Social Responsibility
The Grassroots, Family Days and Support Project was allocated £1.4 million for a fixed three-year period through Her Majesty's Treasury Invest to Save programme. The scheme provides the opportunity to pilot innovations to evaluate outcomes, to disseminate learning and to determine whether such practice can be encompassed within the delivery of mainstream services. In the event of such funding being awarded, no assurance can be given that funding can be sustained from any source.
Some valuable learning from the project has been adopted by the four participating prisons which are now themselves running family-specific events within their establishments. The project overall presents learning and practice development which will be used to good effect in developing national service specifications relating to both mentoring and children and families of offenders. It also informs work in developing and implementing the recommendations of Baroness Neuberger's report into volunteering in the criminal justice system.
The table below shows the total amount of compensation paid to farmers in England in each of the past 10 financial years for cattle compulsorily slaughtered for bovine tuberculosis control reasons.
Year Compensation paid* £m 2008-09** 33.1 2007-08 16.8 2006-07 14.5 2005-06 33.2 2004-05 24.1 2003-04 24.4 2002-03 24.7 2001-02 6.2 2000-01 5.6 1999-00 4.8
Compensation paid* £m
* Compensation includes payments to farmers for “reactors” and “direct contact” animals which are compulsorily slaughtered. This data have been taken from the Defra Oracle Financial System.
** Data are provisional and subject to change.
The government response of March 2009 to the Anderson review noted that a number of government departments operate a complaints process in respect of regulatory guidance. This process applies to government guidance on domestic and European legislation. It may include a discretionary ex gratia payment as one of the options for redress. Any such complaints would be considered on a case by case basis in the light of all the relevant circumstances.
Cattle Compensation Advisory Group
The Cattle Compensation Advisory Group, set up to help monitor the roll out of the table valuation based compensation arrangements, has not convened since 2006 because of the long running and ongoing legal challenge against this system. We have no plans to reconvene the group.
We expect that ContactPoint management teams will have completed their training by the end of August.
ContactPoint management teams and trainers are subject to testing as part of the ContactPoint training. There is no mandatory written exam for practitioners to become authorised users of ContactPoint.
In order for professionals who work with children and young people to become authorised users of ContactPoint they must:
have an enhanced Criminal Records Bureau check, renewed every three years;
attend and successfully complete mandatory training on the use of ContactPoint, which includes security responsibilities, the importance of good security practice, the Data Protection Act and Human Rights Act;
be provided with the ContactPoint security operating procedures; and
sign an end-user agreement form which sets out the responsibilities and commitments that an authorised user of ContactPoint agrees.
ContactPoint users will also need to be subject to monitoring by the Independent Safeguarding Authority (ISA) when it is introduced.
The department and local authorities are making information about ContactPoint available to young people and their parent/carer using a variety of means and channels; for example, local direct mailing in some areas, leaflet availability at public outlets and leaflet distribution, articles and notices in national, local and regional publications, and posting information on websites. This has been happening for many months, and will continue to happen as ContactPoint is rolled out nationally. Local authorities are responsible for determining themselves how best to make information about ContactPoint available to the public, and the department has provided guidance to support them to do this. The department does not collect information about local direct mailing on ContactPoint; and therefore we cannot estimate the cost of this type of activity.
ContactPoint is designed, built, operated and managed to HM Government standards for security and complies with the strict controls imposed by HM Government security policy. Data contained within the system are made available only to those authorised users and administrators who have been subject to vetting and have completed mandatory training.
Shielding is an additional measure of security, relevant for the small minority of children and young people considered to be at an increased risk should their whereabouts become known. Shielding hides the contact details of the child or young person and their parent/carer, together with those of any practitioners involved with them.
The decision to shield a record must be taken by the local authority on a case-by-case basis and will be based on the level of threat posed. Local authorities must also take into account any views expressed by the child/young person and, where appropriate, their parents/carers and any relevant involved practitioners. We have provided statutory and non-statutory guidance and business processes to local authorities to help them in making these decisions and to help ensure consistency in decision-making across authorities.
It is vital that shielding is only applied where there are strong reasons—for example, where there is reason to believe that not doing so is likely to:
place a child at increased risk of significant harm;
put a child's placement at risk (in the case of adoption);
place an adult at increased risk of significant harm, and/or;
prejudice the prevention or detection of a serious crime.
The Government are committed to promoting breastfeeding as the best form of nutrition for infants and have undertaken a range of interventions to promote and raise awareness about infants’ nutrition. These include: an investment of £7 million to support primary care trusts to implement the Baby Friendly Initiative in hospitals and in the community; the provision of easily accessible and timely advice through the National Breastfeeding Helpline; the breastfeeding DVD “From Bump to Breastfeeding” given to all new mothers in England via their midwives and health visitors and a number of promotional materials provided and activities held locally during the National Breastfeeding Awareness Week. In addition, the department's Healthy Start scheme promotes breastfeeding to mothers from low-income and disadvantaged households.
The department will be conveying messages on breastfeeding and healthy weaning through the Change4Life under-twos’ marketing strategy to be launched later in 2009.
Civil Service: Performance Pay
To ask Her Majesty's Government further to the Written Statement by the Lord President (Baroness Royall of Blaisdon) on 31 March (WS 83–84), what was the estimated size of the Cabinet Office's non-consolidated performance-related pay pot for the Senior Civil Service in each of the last five years for which information is available. [HL2904]
I refer the noble Lord to the Answer I gave to the noble Lord Oakeshott of Seagrove Bay on 6 May 2009 (Official Report, WA 115-16).
Coroners and Justice Bill
The coroner reform and death certification provisions of the Coroners and Justice Bill implement, in full or in part, a number of recommendations contained in the Shipman inquiry's third report, including the statutory duty on doctors to report certain deaths to coroners, the appointment of a Chief Coroner, an appeals system, independent inspection, and independent medical examiners to scrutinise the certificates of cause of death of all deaths not reported to the coroner. Other recommendations about coroners and death certification have been addressed by alternative means, including the framework within which services are delivered. As announced in the other place by my right honourable friend the former Minister of State for Constitutional Affairs (Harriet Harman) on 6 February 2006 (Official Report, cols. 607-08), and on several occasions in Parliament subsequently, the Government are not convinced that the inquiry's recommendation for a centralised death investigation service is the most effective model. Our preference is for coroners and medical examiners to be based at a local level, and while there will be close links between the two on specific aspects of their work, we believe that they should not be part of an integrated organisational structure. Recommendations made by the Shipman inquiry into matters that are beyond the scope of coroners and death certification—such as the control of drugs, complaints arrangements in health and social care, and medical regulation and revalidation—are being taken forward by the Department of Health.
Criminal Justice Acts
There is currently no central record of the information required. In order to obtain this information, a detailed investigation will need to be undertaken which will take some time. The information requested is being collated and I will write to the noble Lord as soon as possible.
Department of Health: Staff
To ask Her Majesty's Government what is the total cost to public funds of (a) the salaries and all other emoluments, Ministerial and Parliamentary, paid to each of the Ministers at the Department of Health; and (b) the salaries and other payments made to the Department's Permanent Secretary and Chief Medical Officer respectively. [HL4228]
Details of salary and other emoluments for the department's Ministers, Permanent Secretary and Chief Medical Officer for the financial year 2007-08 are recorded in the department's remuneration report, part of the Resource Accounts 2007-08, which are available in the Library, and can be found on page 25 of that document.
The DH resource accounts for the financial year 2008-09, including the department's remuneration report, are currently in preparation. Following audit and certification by National Audit Office, they will be laid before Parliament during July 2009. The remuneration report will contain information on salary paid and other emoluments received for the department's Ministers, Permanent Secretary and the Chief Medical Officer for the 2008-09 financial year.
The salaries to which Ministers are currently entitled are published in Factsheet M6 from the House of Commons Information Service and can be found at www.parliament.uk/documents/upload/M06.pdf.
Education Maintenance Allowance
The education maintenance allowance is an incentive paid direct to young people to encourage them to participate in post-compulsory learning. We have no evidence to suggest that the current rate of weekly payment does not provide the required incentive. Since it was introduced participation in post-16 learning has increased each year. EMA is not designed to meet all a young person's living costs—help with these is provided through child benefit and working tax credits, or through the benefit system provided through the Department for Work and Pensions.
Employment tribunals are adjudicating bodies and are not responsible for enforcing their awards or orders of costs. The Tribunals Service, therefore, does not hold data relating to the number of employers who did not pay compensation awarded at employment tribunals.
However, recent research into this issue by the Ministry of Justice showed that, at the time they were interviewed, 39 per cent of claimants who participated in the research had been awarded a monetary payment which had not been paid by the employer.
The Government have streamlined the enforcement process for claimants and are currently in discussion with the High Court Enforcement Officers Association to develop a service which will enable claimants to commission a High Court enforcement officer to enforce their award as soon as the respondent fails to make payment. This was set out in my Written Statement on 19 May 2009 (Official Report, col. WS 111).
The UK domestic agricultural sector makes an important contribution to the diversity of safe and nutritious food we enjoy, and will need to continue to respond to changes in global markets for food. The Government believe UK agriculture should produce as much food as possible, provided this can be done sustainably and is driven by consumer demand.
Primary responsibility for action to improve competitiveness rests—as in other sectors of the economy—with the sector itself. Government's principal role in this area is encouraging and enabling to ensure we have a thriving and sustainable agri-food sector. We are encouraging more resource efficient and environmentally sustainable agriculture by: providing guidance on nutrient management (Code of Good Agricultural Practice, issued January 2009); reducing water pollution (Catchment Sensitive Farming Programme and NVZs); and environmental stewardship schemes.
The Government are also helping rural businesses through the economic downturn by raising the funding limit on grants to 100 per cent for projects under the Rural Development Plan for England (RDPE). We are encouraging co-operation in production and marketing— for example, the Pigmeat Supply Chain Taskforce—and we are taking regulatory burdens seriously and arguing strongly against those we view as unnecessary or inappropriate with our European partners. And we are continuing our commitment to ensuring the right research and development strategy is in place across a wide range of areas, including the environmental impacts of local and seasonal foods; the water impacts of our food supply; and the integrating water quality, ecology and production at farm and catchment scale.
The Government have already secured voluntary public commitments from over 40 of the largest catering companies for action that will reduce salt in their food. These companies are from all parts of the catering industry including restaurants.
As the existing initiative is working well, the Government intend to continue their current work with these companies, as well as actively encourage new companies to reduce the salt content in the meals they serve. This will include targeting smaller businesses.
We have noted the findings of the report, which indicates that increasing numbers of children will be affected by type 1 diabetes. Primary care trusts will need to ensure appropriate planning of services and that resources are in place to provide high-quality care for the anticipated increased numbers of children affected.
Homelessness: Rough Sleepers
The table below shows the number of rough sleepers:
2000 2005 2007 2008 Birmingham 23 7 5 6 Leeds 17 4 1 6 Manchester 23 7 7 11 Liverpool 19 8 12 13 Newcastle upon Tyne 2 0 0 2
Newcastle upon Tyne
House of Lords: Ministerial Responsibilities
Among other recent changes to the composition of the Government, I have been appointed as a Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State in Defra. I am carrying out these duties alongside my responsibilities as the Government's Deputy Chief Whip in this House. My departmental portfolio is as follows:
all Defra business in the Lords;
deputy for the Minister of State's business;
bee and plant health;
Agricultural Wages Board;
Gangmasters Licensing Authority;
seasonal agricultural workers scheme (SAWS); and
To ask Her Majesty's Government how many selective licensing areas are in existence; what are their names, locations, relevant local authorities and dates of establishment; how many houses are included in each; and what percentage of those houses are owned by private landlords. [HL4272]
To ask Her Majesty's Government which applications by local authorities for selective licensing areas have been rejected; and for what reasons. [HL4273]
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether they have commissioned research into the effectiveness of selective licensing areas (SLAs); if so, what research has taken place; and what is their assessment of the success of SLAs. [HL4274]
The table below highlights those local authorities that have been granted approval to operate selective licensing schemes under the Housing Act 2004.
We invite local authorities to work with departmental officials in the development of their selective licensing proposals so that the applications when submitted are consistent with published criteria. This has meant that the Secretary of State has not rejected any applications.
The Building Research Establishment (BRE) has conducted a review of local authority implementation of the licensing provisions under the Housing Act 2004, and this has included an assessment of those selective licensing regimes that were in operation at the time of the research. The final report is due to be published in July 2009.
Authority No. of Designations Area Date of Confirmation Commencement Date Valid Until No. of privately rented properties Salford City Council 1 Seedley & Langworthy Renewal Area 26.2.07 25.5.07 24.5.12 517 Middlesborough Council 1 Gresham & Middlehaven Ward 6.3.07 5.6.07 4.6.12 838 Manchester City Council 3 Harpurhey Ward 4.5.07 3.8.07 2.08.12 1184 Manchester City Council - Bradford Ward 4.5.07 3.8.07 2.8.12 516 Manchester City Council - Gorton North and South Wards 4.5.07 2.11.07 1.11.12 1818 Gateshead Council 1 Sunderland Road 26.6.07 25.9.07 24.9.12 363 Sedgefield Council 1 Dean Bank & Chilton West 8.11.07 7.2.08 6.2.13 504 Burnley Council 1 Trinity Ward 23.7.08 22.10.08 21.3.13 430 Bolton Council 1 Tonge with Haulgh Ward 11.8.08 10.11.08 9.11.13 142 Blackburn Council 2 Infirmary Area 17.11.08 17.2.09 16.2.14 198 Blackburn Council - Central Darwen 5.1.09 1.6.09 31.5.14 193 Leeds City Council 1 East End Cross Green 19.5.09 1.10.09 30.9.04 406 Easington Council 1 Wembley 7.11.8 10.2.09 9.2.14 103 Hartlepool 1 North and Central Areas 30.1.09 1.5.09 30.4.14 530 Total 14
No. of Designations
Date of Confirmation
No. of privately rented properties
Salford City Council
Seedley & Langworthy Renewal Area
Gresham & Middlehaven Ward
Manchester City Council
Manchester City Council
Manchester City Council
Gorton North and South Wards
Dean Bank & Chilton West
Tonge with Haulgh Ward
Leeds City Council
East End Cross Green
North and Central Areas
To date, 24 interim empty dwelling management orders (EDMOs) have been approved by the Residential Property Tribunal Service (RPTS) since the legislation came into effect in April 2006. However, local authorities claim that in many cases the threat of an EDMO has been sufficient to make owners take action to bring long-term empty homes back into use.
We are confident that the legislation is beginning to work well. We always intended that the legislation should be used only as a last resort where other measures have proved unsuccessful. We want to encourage voluntary reoccupation of empty homes but this can only work well where there is realistic compulsion to back them up. EDMOs provide this compulsion and should therefore be a key component of a comprehensive empty property strategy.
Local authority No. of Interim EDMOs Authorised London Borough of Bromley 1 Carlisle District Council 1 London Borough of Hammersmith & Fulham 1 London Borough of Hounslow 2 London Borough of Lewisham 5 New Forest District Council 1 Norwich City Council 5 Peterborough City Council 2 South Norfolk District Council 1 Staffordshire Moorlands District Council 1 Swale Borough Council 1 Wychavon District Council 1 South Tyneside Borough Council 1 Southend-On-Sea Borough Council 1 Total 24
No. of Interim EDMOs Authorised
London Borough of Bromley
Carlisle District Council
London Borough of Hammersmith & Fulham
London Borough of Hounslow
London Borough of Lewisham
New Forest District Council
Norwich City Council
Peterborough City Council
South Norfolk District Council
Staffordshire Moorlands District Council
Swale Borough Council
Wychavon District Council
South Tyneside Borough Council
Southend-On-Sea Borough Council
Local authorities have a range of enforcement powers available to them to use where properties are left empty and which may have become derelict or be in poor condition. Local authorities can use compulsory purchase orders where properties are left empty or they can use an enforced sale procedure where empty properties are derelict or in poor condition. The Housing Act 2004 also introduced empty dwelling management orders for properties that have been left empty for longer than six months. These enforcement powers are not specific to selective licensing areas.
In selective licensing areas, all private landlords will need to be identified by local authorities as fit and proper persons and must ensure that satisfactory management standards are in place at their properties. Local authorities have powers to take over the management of privately rented properties in selective licensing areas, known as interim management orders (IMOs), if a licence cannot be granted.
The Human Rights Act 1998 applies throughout the United Kingdom and the Government have no plans to consider whether other appropriate human rights should be introduced for particular areas of England.
Human Rights Act 1998
Section 145 of the Health and Social Care Act 2008 ensures that care and accommodation which is publicly arranged under the National Assistance Act 1948 (or similar provision in Scottish and Northern Irish legislation) is now subject to the Human Rights Act 1998 as if it were a function of a public nature within the meaning of Section 6(3)(b) of that Act. It therefore reverses the effect of the judgment of the Appellate Committee in YL v Birmingham City Council on care homes, in respect of individuals whose care is publicly arranged.
Intelligence and Security Committee
To ask Her Majesty's Government what arrangements are in place for the Intelligence and Security Committee to obtain independent legal advice. [HL2383]
To ask Her Majesty's Government when they will answer Question HL2383 tabled on 19 March about what arrangements are in place for the Intelligence and Security Committee to obtain independent legal advice; and what is the reason for the delay in answering it. [HL4194]
Arrangements were put in place in December 2008 for the Intelligence and Security Committee to obtain independent and confidential legal advice through the Treasury Solicitor's Department.
International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights
To ask Her Majesty's Government what is the nature of the evidence they require for the purpose of deciding whether to accept the First Optional Protocol to the United Nations International Covenant on Civil and Political Rights; and what steps they will take to obtain such evidence. [HL4161]
The Government need to be convinced of the practical value to the people of the United Kingdom of the rights of individual petition to the United Nations under each of the covenants to which they apply. In 2004 we acceded to the Optional Protocol to the Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Discrimination against Women. One of our reasons for doing so was to enable us to consider on a more empirical basis the merits of the right of individual petition. Professor Jim Murdoch of Glasgow University reviewed the operation of the optional protocol, and we announced the conclusions of his review on 4 December 2008, which were that the optional protocol had not yet provided women in the UK with real benefits; non-governmental organisations in the UK had not used the optional protocol in advancing the cause of women, and that the quality of the UN Committee's adjudication on admissibility of complaints could appear inconsistent. Professor Murdoch's findings suggest that the first three years did not provide sufficient empirical evidence to decide either way on the value of other individual complaint mechanisms. We will need further evidence, over a longer period, to establish what the practical benefits are.
On 8 June (Official Report, col. 28WS), my honourable friend the Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Work and Pensions (Jonathan Shaw) announced that the UK intends to ratify the Optional Protocol to the Convention on the Rights of Persons with Disabilities shortly. The Government will keep under review the applications made under these two optional protocols, how they are handled by the relevant committees at the United Nations, and whether their outcome demonstrates significant additional benefits to people in the United Kingdom. This evidence will assist the Government in assessing the merits of other individual petition mechanisms.
Israel and Palestine
The UK remains committed to supporting the Arab peace initiative (API). My right honourable friend the Foreign Secretary reiterated the UK's support to the API in his statement at the UN Security Council on 11 May 2009. The UK sees the API as an essential basis for progressing towards peace in the Middle East.
We will continue to maintain contact with Israeli, Palestinian, Arab and other international leaders to do all we can to drive the peace process forward.
To ask Her Majesty's Government further to the Written Answer by the Minister for the Natural and Marine Environment, Wildlife and Rural Affairs, Huw Irranca-Davies, on 12 November 2008 (Official Report, House of Commons, cols. 1226–7W), what are the latest expected completion dates and estimated costs of each of the information technology projects in the table. [HL3906]
My honourable friend issued a Ministerial Correction to his Answer on 27 March (Official Report, cols. 5-6MC).
We now include a project that is a new, updated entry from the Rural Payments Agency, which was unintentionally omitted from the November 2008 table.
The projects listed are information technology projects in Defra and its largest executive agencies, the Rural Payments Agency and Animal Health, which were estimated to cost more than £1 million over the life of the project. Costs listed exclude the day-to-day running costs after the completion of the project. The figures quoted are either the actual cost for completed projects or the latest forecast estimates for those that are not yet completed. The estimated costs to completion are subject to change as business cases are reviewed and funding approved.
Projects costing less than £1 million and those within smaller executive agencies, as well as any projects initiated after November 2008, have been excluded as data collection for these would incur a disproportionate cost to the department to compile.
Project Actual/expected completion date Actual/estimated costs £ Animal Health Business Reform Programme November 2011 98,000,000 Rural Payments Agency Cattle Tracing System (CTS) Programme* November 2009 6,700,000 CAP Health Check Implementation Programme—Rural Payments Agency November 2010 32,700,000 Customer and Land Database (CLAD) March 2010 1,730,000 Enabling Technology Programme 2008-09 March 2009 2,100,000 UK Location Programme (previously described with the working title of “INSPIRE/UK Location Strategy Implementation Programme”) December 2012 12,800,000 Renew IT March 2009 9,000,000 Rural Payments Agency Managed Document Service September 2009 2,500,000 Rural Payments Agency Rural Land Register Upgrade April 2010 21,400,000 Rural Payments Agency Single Payment System Upgrade (including CAP Health Check) November 2009 20,400,000 Rural Payments Agency Storage Servers Upgrade March 2010 3,800,000 Spatial Information Repository (SPIRE) March 2010 14,950,000 Web Rationalisation March 2011 1,440,000 Whole Farm Approach March 2011 74,000,000
Actual/expected completion date
Actual/estimated costs £
Animal Health Business Reform Programme
Rural Payments Agency Cattle Tracing System (CTS) Programme*
CAP Health Check Implementation Programme—Rural Payments Agency
Customer and Land Database (CLAD)
Enabling Technology Programme 2008-09
UK Location Programme (previously described with the working title of “INSPIRE/UK Location Strategy Implementation Programme”)
Rural Payments Agency Managed Document Service
Rural Payments Agency Rural Land Register Upgrade
Rural Payments Agency Single Payment System Upgrade (including CAP Health Check)
Rural Payments Agency Storage Servers Upgrade
Spatial Information Repository (SPIRE)
Whole Farm Approach
*This project is a new, updated entry from the Rural Payments Agency, which was unintentionally omitted from the November 2008 table.
7,375 judicial reviews were issued in England and Wales during the 2008-09 financial year.
Of the 266 judicial review cases granted legal aid in 2008-09 the Northern Ireland Legal Services Commission has received reports on 62 cases. Of the 62 cases, 10 were successful; seven were unsuccessful; nine were settled and 36 did not proceed to court. The outcomes of the remaining 204 cases have yet to be reported. The 10 successful cases are set out below:
Surname Forename Associated Person Body Khan Kasem Home Office Faloon Christopher City High Principal of Board of Governors of Armagh Curran Brendan District Judge Magill Clarence Gordon Mental Health Review Tribunal Phiri Maureen Home Office Maguire Elaine Northern Ireland Housing Executive Carmichael Brigid Mental Health Tribunal for NI Mabeka Linia Secretary of State for NI Daly Alan Prison Service Headquarters Chinyoka Ignatious Home Office
Associated Person Body
City High Principal of Board of Governors of Armagh
District Judge Magill
Mental Health Review Tribunal
Northern Ireland Housing Executive
Mental Health Tribunal for NI
Secretary of State for NI
Prison Service Headquarters
Northern Ireland: Human Rights Commission
As stated in my Answer to the noble Lord of 30 March (Official Report, cols. WA 199-200), the Northern Ireland Human Rights Commission's annual expenditure is published each year in its annual report and accounts, copies of which are placed in the Libraries of both Houses.
The Northern Ireland Office provides funding to the commission each financial year, which is a period of 12 months ending on 31 March. The commission's final expenditure in 2007-08 was £1.672 million and £1.744 million in 2008-09. The budget allocation for 2009-10 has been agreed at £1.657 million, based on consideration of the commission's draft business plan and discussion of the justification for the proposed spend. These figures include cash and non-cash payments.
Allocation of funding is reviewed with the commission during in-year monitoring rounds and regularly throughout the financial year.
To ask Her Majesty's Government whether they will ask Network Rail how many significant engineering proposals to improve the running of the railway network have been made in the past three years; and how many of those have (a) been adopted, and (b) not been adopted. [HL4323]
This is an operational matter for Network Rail as the owner and operator of the national rail network. The noble Lord should contact Network Rail's chief executive at the following address for a response to his questions: Iain Coucher, Chief Executive, Network Rail, Kings Place, 90 York Way, London, N1 9AG.
Railways: Network Rail
The Government are prepared to discuss reopening of a specific railway line where a local authority or passenger transport executive or region considers that this might be the best way of addressing local or regional issues. We have no plans to discuss with Network Rail or train operators the subject of reopening of lines generally.
Railways: Public Subsidy
Details of historic public subsidy for the railway is published by the Office of Rail Regulation in National Rail Trends. Copies of this document are available in the Library of the House.
The Cambrian line is being fitted with a state of the art in-cab signalling system, the European rail traffic management system (ERTMS), which is fully compliant with European legislation on railway interoperability.
The Government have not undertaken any research into whether the tabular valuation mechanism has speeded up the removal of reactor animals. However, Animal Health has a 20-day target for removing TB-affected cattle and in between April 2008 and March 2009 they met this target in 88 per cent of cases.
Sir Alan Sugar
The enterprise champion has not been asked to advise on any specific Bill. He is expected to provide advice to government on ways to ensure small firms and entrepreneurs make the most of the real help available from government and other organisations.
We are in touch with a range of stakeholders, including farming representatives and others, regarding a variety of issues affecting water quality and the measures we propose in order to tackle them.
Farming organisations are fully inputting into a range of consultations that are currently being undertaken.
Working Time Directive
The impact of the European working time directive on training and service provision has been a regular feature of advice from officials to the relevant Secretary of State since the directive was first introduced by the European Commission in November 1993.
Trusts are being supported to implement the working time directive for their junior doctors in training and many have already done so. The aim is that the maximum number of services, consistent with patient safety, are supported to achieve compliance.
In January the Secretary of State for Health notified the European Commission of concerns that a number of hospital services delivering 24-hour immediate patient care, some supra-specialist services, and small, remote and rural units may need more time to achieve full compliance with the requirement for an average 48-hour working week. The notification set out the Government's intention to take up the option of a limited derogation under Article 17(5) of the European working time directive for services identified as needing more time. Derogation would allow services to plan for up to a 52-hour average week, up to August 2011 (exceptionally until 2012). This flexibility represents good National Health Service management.