22 July 2014 : Column 1013W

Written Answers to Questions

Tuesday 22 July 2014

House of Commons Commission

Computer Software

Thomas Docherty: To ask the hon. Member for Caithness, Sutherland and Easter Ross, representing the House of Commons Commission, who decided on which days to migrate the IT accounts of hon. Members and hon. Members' staff to Office 365. [206392]

John Thurso: The Improved Access to Services Project Board agreed the high-level schedule for the migration of parliamentary e-mail boxes to Microsoft 365. The more detailed decision on which days to migrate the e-mail boxes of hon. Members and hon. Members' staff was taken by the project team, overseen by the Director of Parliamentary ICT, taking into account factors such as: mailbox access rights (so that users accessing a particular mailbox are migrated at the same time); staff who work for more than one Member; and trying to balance the number of e-mail boxes accessed by BlackBerry devices across the migration days.

Thomas Docherty: To ask the hon. Member for Caithness, Sutherland and Easter Ross, representing the House of Commons Commission, pursuant to the answer of 8 July 2014, Official Report, column 176-7W, on computer software, what further feedback the Commission has received from (a) hon. Members, (b) hon. Members' staff and (c) other users on migration to Office 365 since that Answer was given. [206393]

John Thurso: In the period 22 June to 16 July, 3,482 mailboxes assigned to hon. Members and their staff had been migrated. In that period, PICT logged 766 cases from hon. Members and their staff—either by phone or at PICT Local—directly related to issues resulting from the migration of their mailboxes. Parliamentary ICT (PICT) acknowledges that the implementation has not been as simple and straightforward as was hoped, and is aware that it has caused problems for some hon. Members.

Since the answer to the hon. Member on 8 July, three hon. Members have given PICT written feedback on the migration of their mailbox. One was complimenting the PICT team on making it a smooth process. One was questioning the process and the distinction between the upgrade to Office 2013 and the migration of a mailbox to Microsoft 365. One had a problem with the limit on the number of people who can be added to a single e-mail distribution list in Microsoft 365.

Two further hon. Members have given positive oral feedback and asked to join the pilot of the wider suite of tools within Microsoft 365. Oral feedback from the teams of House staff who are also piloting the use of this wider suite of tools continues to be positive.

22 July 2014 : Column 1014W

The Director of PICT would be delighted to meet the hon. Member for Dunfermline and West Fife, or any other interested Member, to discuss the feedback in more detail.

Thomas Docherty: To ask the hon. Member for Caithness, Sutherland and Easter Ross, representing the House of Commons Commission, pursuant to the answer of 8 July 2014, Official Report, columns 176-7W, on computer software, what estimate the Commission has made of the (a) average and (b) aggregate amount of time spent by (i) hon. Members, (ii) Members' staff and (iii) others in migrating to Office 365. [206394]

John Thurso: The information is as follows.

(a) Parliamentary ICT (PICT) estimates that, following the migration of a user’s mailbox to Microsoft 365, it takes the user’s computer (laptop or PC) an average of five minutes to reconfigure Outlook.

It can take a user an average of approximately five minutes to reconfigure a mobile device—other than a BlackBerry—that uses ActiveSync to connect to parliamentary e-mail. Following that reconfiguration, it can take up to a maximum of 60 minutes for the device automatically to re-connect to parliamentary e-mail.

BlackBerry devices need to be physically reconfigured by PICT, and this process can take over an hour—the length of time is linked to the age and model of the device. Furthermore, it takes longer to reconfigure a personal BlackBerry device than a BlackBerry issued by PICT. PICT has issued 92 BlackBerry devices for use by hon. Members and their staff to access parliamentary e-mail.

(b) It is not possible to provide a figure for the aggregate time taken to reconfigure the above devices because more than one device can be reconfigured at the same time.

ICT

Thomas Docherty: To ask the hon. Member for Caithness, Sutherland and Easter Ross, representing the House of Commons Commission, how many contractors supporting PICT and other information technology projects in the House have had their contracts (a) terminated and (b) not renewed due to poor performance. [204884]

John Thurso: PICT hold records of all contractors who have left PICT since April 2012. Since contractors are not employees—but employed via an agency or their own Limited Company—any records kept are brief. It is not usual practice to provide references and as a result, reasons for their departure are not recorded.

The number of contractors whose contracts ended during this period has been follows:

 Number

2012-13

29

2013-14

48

2014-15 (to 30 June)

57

22 July 2014 : Column 1015W

Parliament: Security

Mrs Glindon: To ask the hon. Member for Caithness, Sutherland and Easter Ross, representing the House of Commons Commission, (1) when the procurement process for a new provider of the search and screening functions at Parliament's three main entrances is expected to commence; [206463]

(2) if he will publish the business case for the Security Arrangements Renewal Programme Board's recommendation that when the security contract with the Metropolitan Police Service for search and screening functions at the three main entrances of the Houses of Parliament ends on 31 March 2015, those functions should be provided by a specialised commercial provider; [206464]

(3) what the timetable is for the Security Arrangements Renewal Programme Board to draw up the specifications for the new contract to provide for search and screening functions at the three main entrances of the Houses of Parliament; [206465]

(4) how much the contract with Metropolitan Police Service to provide search and screening functions at the Houses of Parliament is expected to cost by the time it ends on 31 March 2015; whether any financial penalties have been incurred during the course of the contract; and whether the contract contains (a) a break clause and (b) an option to extend beyond March 2015. [206466]

John Thurso: The final decision about which organisation will provide security officer services from April 2015 has not yet been taken. Consequently, no procurement process for the provision of the search and screening function at the three main public entrances has begun and no date has been set. The parliamentary authorities continue to work in partnership with the Metropolitan police service (MPS) to agree and implement a mutually acceptable outcome. In October, the Parliamentary Security Director, as Chair of the Security Arrangements Renewal Programme (SARP) Board, will provide an update to committees of both Houses on progress made in negotiations with the MPS over the summer recess.

The SARP business case will not be disclosed at this stage for commercial and security reasons. This is usual practice for such documents. A high-level statement of Parliament's requirements for security post-2015 was communicated to MPS in February, since when it has been refined in discussion with MPS. A much more detailed specification was sent to MPS in June. The parliamentary authorities are now negotiating with the MPS about the scope of services the MPS will provide.

The expected overall cost of the current contract with the MPS, which is due to expire in March 2015, is £155,380,200. A breakdown of costs associated with the individual parts of the service, including the search and screening function, cannot be provided, on grounds of commercial sensitivity. No financial penalties have been incurred under the current contract, which does not contain a break clause. The contract includes an option to extend for a maximum period of two years if agreed by both parties.

22 July 2014 : Column 1016W

Pay

Mr Bradshaw: To ask the hon. Member for Caithness, Sutherland and Easter Ross, representing the House of Commons Commission, how many officials employed by the House of Commons, of each grade, have remained at that grade since 2010 but received a pay rise; and how much of a rise each such person at each such grade has received. [205460]

John Thurso: 678 staff in the House of Commons have remained at the same pay band since 2010 and received a pay rise. These pay increases varied depending on factors including where the person fell in the pay band and length of service. Increases fell within the following ranges:

£73-£8,388 in the A-E pay bands (520 people);

£120-£380 in the Catering Service (134), and

£318-£1,230 in the Senior Commons Structure (24).

Procurement

Sadiq Khan: To ask the hon. Member for Caithness, Sutherland and Easter Ross, representing the House of Commons Commission, how much and what proportion of the House of Commons Commission's budget was spent on activities which were contracted out in (a) 2009-10, (b) 2010-11, (c) 2011-12, (d) 2012-13 and (e) 2013-14; and how much and what proportion of the House of Commons Commission's budget he expects to be contracted out in 2014-15. [205219]

John Thurso: There are around 800 third party suppliers of services to the House of Commons and given system changes in recent years it would involve disproportionate cost to derive precise figures of contract expenditure by financial year. It is estimated that expenditure has broadly been equivalent to:

 Amount (£ million)Proportion of spend (%)

2009-10

92.7

32.6

2010-11

87.4

47.4

2011-12

90.7

43.1

2012-13

89.0

40.9

2013-14

83.7

37.0

For 2014-15 the planned amount is around £100 million which represents 40.8% of the combined capital and resource budget.

Wales

Billing

Mr Watson: To ask the Secretary of State for Wales what the value is of duplicate supplier payments identified by his Department since 2010; and what proportion of such payments have since been recovered in each of the last two financial years. [205981]

Stephen Crabb: The Wales Office has identified no duplicate payments since 2010.

22 July 2014 : Column 1017W

Northern Ireland

Administrative Scheme for the “On the Runs” Independent Review

Lady Hermon: To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland (1) what steps she is taking to publish the names of the 228 on-the-runs with comfort letters after the publication of the Hallett Report; and if she will make a statement; [206248]

(2) following the publication of the Hallett Report, if she will now publish the names of the 228 on-the-runs who received comfort letters. [206531]

Mrs Villiers: Lady Justice Hallett did not publish the names of OTRs in her report, with the exception of John Downey. She was clear that her decision not to do so was not

“a result of any ‘whitewash’”

but rather,

“as a matter of law”

She

“was not entitled to do so”.

Indeed, she has been

“scrupulously careful not to reveal details of offences in which any OTR was a suspect… so as not to prejudice any future criminal trials”.

In the same way, and as I made clear in answering questions following my statement on 17 July about the report, I will not release the personal information of those involved in the scheme nor any other information which might prejudice any future trials. As Lady Justice Hallett has said, people

“would not thank me if I inadvertently contributed to another successful abuse of process investigation”.

Lady Hermon: To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland with reference to paragraph 10.52 of the Report of the Hallett Review, if she will publish the names of the 13 on-the-runs who have benefited from the Royal Prerogative of Mercy. [206530]

Mrs Villiers: Lady Justice Hallett concluded that she should not publish the names of OTRs (with the exception of John Downey) because she had been provided with this information on a confidential basis.

I do not propose to release the names of those whose cases were considered under the OTR administrative scheme. This is partly because of legal issues around data protection, etc, but also because publication of names might have a prejudicial effect on possible future criminal trials.

The assessment of my Department is that to release the names of individuals granted the RPM years ago would not be appropriate, given the time that has passed since the RPM was last used and the potential legal issues this would raise. There are of course means by which names of RPM recipients become public, including in the course of legal proceedings, which is a matter for the courts.

Belfast Harbour

Mr Ivan Lewis: To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland in what ways she is supporting the Northern Ireland Executive in maximising the potential of Belfast port. [205504]

22 July 2014 : Column 1018W

Mrs Villiers: Earlier in the year I met with the Government Shipping and Ports Minister to discuss how best to support work on maximising the potential of Belfast Port. I recently visited the Port and discussed this work with the Northern Ireland Executive Minister for Regional Development and the Chairman of the Belfast Harbour Commissioners.

As set out in Building a Prosperous and United Community: One Year On, the Government will continue to support the Executive in its work on maximising the potential of Belfast Port. This will include sharing further information about the announced reforms at the Port of Dover and their implementation.

Billing

Mr Watson: To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland what the value is of duplicate supplier payments identified by her Department since 2010; and what proportion of such payments have since been recovered in each of the last two financial years. [205977]

Dr Murrison: My Department does not hold records of duplicate supplier payments. The system currently operating in the Northern Ireland Office registers invoice numbers and will not allow two invoices with the same reference number to be paid. To manually search through the invoices received and paid from 2010 to date would incur disproportionate cost.

Buildings

Mr Slaughter: To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland how much has been spent on refurbishing (a) gymnasium and leisure facilities, (b) cafeteria and (c) interior decoration in (i) her Department and (ii) buildings owned by her Department in (A) 2013 and (B) 2014 to date. [205359]

Mrs Villiers: Departmental records and accounts indicate that no expenditure has been incurred on any of the matters set out in the question during the specified period except for some repair works at Hillsborough Castle needed because of damage caused by a water leak. As not all invoices for this work have yet been received, the total cost is not yet known.

Business

Mr Ivan Lewis: To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland when she next plans to meet the (a) CEO and (b) chair of the British Business Bank to discuss how that organisation can more effectively support Northern Ireland businesses. [204241]

Mrs Villiers: I hold regular discussions with representatives of the British Business Bank, the most recent of which took place in Belfast on 9 July 2014.

The autumn meeting of the Joint Ministerial Task Force on banking and access to finance, which I chair, will also include discussions about the implementation of Business Bank programmes in Northern Ireland.

22 July 2014 : Column 1019W

Children: Abuse

Jim Shannon: To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland if she will commission a Northern Ireland-based inquiry on child abuse at Kincora; and if she will include it in either the current inquiry in Northern Ireland or the national inquiry into abuse in care homes. [206425]

Mrs Villiers: Horrific offences took place at Kincora Boys Home in Belfast which were the subject of criminal prosecutions and a judge-led inquiry.

The new inquiry announced by the Secretary of State for the Home Department, my right hon. Friend the Member for Maidenhead (Mrs May), on 7th July is currently being set up and its terms of reference are yet to be determined. The Home Secretary and I will consider carefully the representations made to it regarding its remit.

Elections

Mr Dodds: To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland what discussions she has had with the Electoral Office on steps to ensure that the election count process for European and other elections held in Northern Ireland is faster and more efficient. [205894]

Dr Murrison: I recently met the Chief Electoral Officer to discuss a range of issues, including steps that might be taken to ensure a faster count at elections held under the Single Transferable Vote in Northern Ireland. I have asked the Chief Electoral Officer to work closely with the Electoral Commission to explore ways to speed up the count process at PR-STV elections in Northern Ireland with a view to implementing any reforms in advance of the 2016 Assembly elections.

Electoral Register

Chris Ruane: To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland pursuant to the answer of 8 July 2014, Official Report, columns 269-74W, on electoral register, what the registration rates were in each ward listed. [204747]

Dr Murrison: The Electoral Office has provided me with the following table listing the estimated registration rates for the 100 wards in Northern Ireland with the highest electoral registration rates. These are based on population estimates based on the 2011 census and may under or overstate the true population from area to area. Because of these inaccuracies, some percentages exceed 100% and actual registration figures1 are therefore included alongside estimated population totals2 for these wards.

WardParliamentary constituencyRegistration rate (%)

Creggan 2352122402

Newry and Armagh

105.0

Creggan South 1751117032

Foyle

102.8

Florence Court and Kinawley 20511 20042

Fermanagh and South Tyrone

102.3

Donagh 1876118412

Fermanagh and South Tyrone

101.9

Cairnshill 2738126912

Belfast South

101.7

Katesbridge 2005119732

South Down

101.6

22 July 2014 : Column 1020W

Saintfield 27081 26722

Strangford

101.3

Tempo 2006119812

Fermanagh and South Tyrone

101.3

Brookeborough 1850118352

Fermanagh and South Tyrone

100.8

Termon 1776117722

West Tyrone

100.2

Killeen 2078120742

Newry and Armagh

100.2

Shantallow East 1880118782

Foyle

100.1

Rosslea

Fermanagh and South Tyrone

99.8

Bannside

South Down

99.7

Killylea

Newry and Armagh

99.7

Owenkillew

West Tyrone

99.7

Lower Glenshane

Mid Ulster

99.6

Ballynashallog

Foyle

99.6

Fairy Water

West Tyrone

99.5

Belcoo and Garrison

Fermanagh and South Tyrone

99.4

Poyntz Pass

Newry and Armagh

99.4

Grange

North Antrim

99.2

Lisnarrick

Fermanagh and South Tyrone

99.1

Ballymartrim

Newry and Armagh

99.1

Loughbrickland

Upper Bann

99.1

Drumnakilly

West Tyrone

98.9

Donaghmore

South Down

98.8

Hamiltonsbawn

Newry and Armagh

98.8

Quilly

Lagan Valley

98.6

Eden

East Antrim

98.4

Parkgate

South Antrim

98.3

Camlough

Newry and Armagh

98.2

Altmore

Mid Ulster

98.2

Binnian

South Down

98.1

Ballycolman

West Tyrone

97.8

Craigywarren

North Antrim

97.8

Lecumpher

Mid Ulster

97.8

Magheralin

Upper Bann

97.6

Ballinamallard

Fermanagh and South Tyrone

97.5

Derrynoose

Newry and Armagh

97.5

Maghaberry

Lagan Valley

97.4

Newtownsaville

West Tyrone

97.3

Silver Bridge

Newry and Armagh

97.3

Oaklands

Mid Ulster

97.3

Ballymaguigan

Mid Ulster

97.2

Gulladuff

Mid Ulster

96.9

Carrowreagh

Belfast East

96.9

Loughgall

Newry and Armagh

96.8

Knockagh

East Antrim

96.8

Bleary

Upper Bann

96.7

Forkhill

Newry and Armagh

96.7

Tullyhappy

Newry and Armagh

96.6

Springtown

Foyle

96.6

Dunminning

North Antrim

96.6

Plumbridge

West Tyrone

96.4

Castlecaulfield

Fermanagh and South Tyrone

96.4

Newtownbutler

Fermanagh and South Tyrone

96.4

Audley's Acre

South Down

96.4%

Charlemont

Newry and Armagh

96.4%

Maguiresbridge

Fermanagh and South Tyrone

96.3%

Dromore

West Tyrone

96.3%

Dunnamore

Mid Ulster

96.2%

Waringstown

Upper Bann

96.1%

Beragh

West Tyrone

96.1%

Pennyburn

Foyle

96.1%

Tollymore

South Down

96.0%

Drumquin

West Tyrone

96.0%

Hockley

Newry and Armagh

95.9%

Jordanstown

East Antrim

95.9%

Ballymaconnell

North Down

95.9%

22 July 2014 : Column 1021W

Ballyhoe and Corkey

North Antrim

95.8%

Cavehill

Belfast North

95.8%

Augher

Fermanagh and South Tyrone

95.7%

Galgorm

North Antrim

95.7%

Hillsborough

Lagan Valley

95.7%

Upper Glenshane

East Londonderry

95.7%

Artigarvan

West Tyrone

95.7%

Toome

South Antrim

95.7%

Glenravel

North Antrim

95.6%

Banagher

East Londonderry

95.6%

Creggan Central

Foyle

95.6%

Forest

East Londonderry

95.6%

The Birches

Upper Bann

95.6%

Fathom

Newry and Armagh

95.6%

Collinbridge

Belfast North

95.5%

Carncastle

East Antrim

95.5%

Clanabogan

West Tyrone

95.5%

Glenarm

East Antrim

95.5%

Lisbane

Strangford

95.5%

Foyle Springs

Foyle

95.5%

Bellaghy

Mid Ulster

95.4%

Ballydown

Upper Bann

95.4%

Killycolpy

Mid Ulster

95.4%

Ringsend

East Londonderry

95.4%

Draperstown

Mid Ulster

95.4%

Derrytrasna

Upper Bann

95.3%

The Loop

Mid Ulster

95.3%

Knocknashane

Upper Bann

95.3%

Ballynure

South Antrim

95.3%

Newtownhamilton

Newry and Armagh

95.2%

Northern Ireland Government

Andrew Rosindell: To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland what recent assessment she has made of the level of political stability in Northern Ireland. [205918]

Mrs Villiers: The Northern Ireland Assembly is now over half way through its second term since the restoration of devolution in 2007 which of itself is a significant achievement. However, there is an urgent need to make progress on dealing with divisive issues such as flags, parading and the past. The Government also believes that implementation of welfare reform by the Executive is very important.

The Government will continue to press for progress on these matters.

Training

Mr Slaughter: To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland how much has been spent on what (a) media training and (b) social media training for (i) her and (ii) Ministers in her Department since May 2010. [205313]

Mrs Villiers: The Northern Ireland Office have not purchased or provided any media or social media training for any (i) Secretaries of State or (ii) Ministers since May 2010.

22 July 2014 : Column 1022W

Work and Pensions

Correspondence

Simon Kirby: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions if he will estimate the annual cost to his Department of (a) stationery and (b) postage incurred when sending a ministerial reply to hon. Members; and if he will make a statement. [206157]

Steve Webb: The cost of paper and envelopes incurred in sending ministerial replies to hon. Members and others during the 2013-14 parliamentary session was £618.00.

The information requested on postage costs is not available.

Simon Kirby: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions whether he has any plans to increase the number of replies within his Department's working day standard; and if he will make a statement. [206488]

Steve Webb: The Department for Work and Pensions aims to reply to correspondence from hon. Members within 20 working days.

The Cabinet Office publishes information on the performance of Departments and agencies on handling correspondence from Members and peers annually by way of a written ministerial statement. The most recent information for 2013, was announced in the written ministerial statement made by the Minister for the Cabinet Office and Paymaster General, the right hon. Member for Horsham (Mr Maude), 13 May 2014, Official Report, column 17WS.

Employment and Support Allowance

Stephen Timms: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions (1) what the average employment and support allowance payment was in each year since 2008; [206579]

(2) what the average employment and support allowance payment made to claimants aged over 50 was in 2013. [206581]

Mr Harper: The information as requested is shown in the following table:

Employment and support allowance, average weekly amount in payment
DateAll agesAged over 50

November 2008

61.17

64.20

November 2009

73.66

76.40

November 2010

81.71

83.76

Novrmber 2011

90.55

91.73

November 2012

103.02

104.17

November 2013

109.97

111.83

Notes: 1. Average amounts are rounded to the nearest penny. 2. Incapacity benefit was replaced by employment and support allowance (ESA) from October 2008. 3. Figures shown do not include ‘nil payment’ cases. 4. Data is as at November in each year shown. Source: DWP In Information Governance and Security Directorate 100% WPLS

22 July 2014 : Column 1023W

Stephen Timms: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what the average cost of processing employment and support allowance claims has been in each year since 2008. [206580]

Mr Harper: The information requested is shown in the following table.

£
Unit costs2008-092009-102010-112011-122012-132013-14

ESA new claims

46.30

40.99

26.14

22.41

25.47

25.09

This is the end of year average unit cost for ESA new claims.

ESA started from October 2008.

Stephen Timms: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions how many employment and support allowance claimants aged over 50 have been (a) referred to and (b) secured a sustained job outcome from the Work programme; and, of those, how many have secured sustained job outcomes. [206582]

Esther McVey: The information requested is shown in the following table:

Number of Work programme referrals, job outcomes and sustained job outcomes for employment and support allowance (ESA) claimants aged over 50, Great Britain, 1 June 2011 to 31 March 2014
 ReferralsJob outcomesSustained job outcomes

Total for all ESA prognosis customer groups

70,740

2,660

2,490

Food Banks

Hugh Bayley: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what additional assistance the Government gives to people using food banks to enable them to find work or additional hours of work; and if he will make funds available to food banks to enable them to do more to help their clients to find work. [206410]

Esther McVey: Jobcentres provide support to all claimants to find work.

In April 2013, funding for crisis loans and community care grants (previously part of the Social Fund) was transferred to local authorities, to enable them to extend their services in a way that best meets local needs. As such, local authorities may choose to fund food banks if they consider that this would benefit their local community.

Funeral Payments

Mark Lazarowicz: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what average time is taken to process an application for funeral expenses from the Social Fund from the time an application is submitted to a decision being taken. [206104]

22 July 2014 : Column 1024W

Steve Webb: The clearance time for Funeral Payments, as published in the 2012-13 Social Fund annual report, is an average of 14.76 days, against a target of 16 days.

Guaranteed Minimum Pensions

Dr Huppert: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what plans he has to equalise guaranteed minimum pensions. [206491]

Steve Webb: The Government is working with the industry to support schemes in their obligation to ensure that equal pension benefits are paid to men and women, taking into account the effect of the guaranteed minimum pension.

Housing Benefit: Social Rented Housing

Tim Farron: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions how many benefit claimants have declined to move into a property with fewer bedrooms, having been offered that option of doing so under the Government's under-occupancy penalty policy. [206492]

Esther McVey: The information requested is not available.

Legal Costs

Chris Bryant: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions how much his Department spent on legal fees in (a) 2010-11, (b) 2011-12, (c) 2012-13 and (d) 2013-14. [206240]

Steve Webb: The following figures detail the Department’s spend on external legal costs incurred for the financial years 2010-11, 2011-12, 2012-13 and 2013-14. These figures include all invoices for fees authorized by the Department’s internal legal services, including but not limited to the case management services provided by the Treasury Solicitor’s Department, external legal representation and external training and professional development of the Department’s legal service. The figures represent actual cost to the Department and therefore only include VAT to the extent such VAT is irrecoverable. The difference in the figures between 2011-12 and later years is largely as a result of DWP prosecutions work being transferred to the Crown Prosecution Service in April 2012.

 External legal costs (£ million)

2010-11

13.59

2011-12

14.45

2012-13

9.38

2013-14

7.718

Occupational Health

Stephen Timms: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions how many bids he has received from companies tendering for the delivery of the Health and Work Service; and if he will make a statement. [206578]

Steve Webb: The tender round is still in progress. As a consequence, at this stage the information requested is not yet available and therefore cannot be disclosed.

22 July 2014 : Column 1025W

Pension Credit

Dr Whiteford: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions with reference to the impact assessment of the single-tier pension published in October 2013, if he will make an estimate of how many people reaching state pension age after implementation of the single-tier pension in (a) the UK and (b) Scotland would have been eligible for savings credit in (i) 2020 and (ii) 2030 had savings credit not been abolished. [206369]

Steve Webb: The full rate of the new State Pension will give an income above the basic means test, rewarding retirement income saving.

It is estimated that in 2020 around 10% of pensioner households receiving the new State Pension, around 200,000 benefit units, in Great Britain would be eligible for the Savings Credit element of Pension Credit if it had not been removed for people who reached State Pension age after the introduction of new State Pension in April 2016.

By 2030, it is estimated that 15% of the new State Pension households, around 1 million benefit units, would be in this position.

Not all of these people would take up their eligibility to Savings Credit. The Department estimates that take-up amongst people eligible for only the Savings Credit element of Pension Credit is between 43% and 48%.

Breakdowns of the impact analysis by country or region within Great Britain are not available.

It is estimated that retaining Savings Credit for all pensioners and uprating it line with earnings would lead to additional annual costs in the UK of around £2 billion in 20 years' time.

Personal Independence Payment

Caroline Lucas: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions if he will make it his policy to publish the personal independence payment application form on his Department’s website in an interactive form; what assessment he made of the difficulties claimants have in completing those forms in long hand; and if he will make a statement. [205815]

Mr Harper: The Personal Independence Payment application form is normally completed by telephone although we are committed to providing an on-line PIP claim and the Department is working with disability representative organisations to develop a secure and accessible on-line service. More information about the Department's Digital Strategy launched in December 2012 is available at

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/dwp-digital-strategy

Once we have established the claimant has met basic entitlement conditions relating to age and residence, a form called ‘How your disability affects you’ and an information booklet will be issued by post. The claimant can use this form to describe in their own words how their health condition or disability affects their daily life using a combination of free text and tick boxes, and has one calendar month to return it. The 'How your disability affects you' questionnaire was tested with claimants

22 July 2014 : Column 1026W

who have a range of health conditions and impairments, to ensure it was easier to complete than the DLA claim form.

These forms can be filled in with the support of friends, carers and family members. Claimants can approach support organisations to help them. Additional support is available through the DWP Visiting Service for claimants who are in vulnerable situations and do not have anyone to help them.

Rosie Cooper: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions (1) what assessment his Department made of the staffing levels required to efficiently process the transfer of employment and support allowance claimants to the personal independence payments claims; [206121]

(2) what assessment he has made of the main reasons for the time taken to process personal independence payment claims; [206123]

(3) what steps he is taking to reduce the time taken to (a) process claims for personal independence payments and (b) receive a work capability assessment appointment. [206132]

Mr Harper: Claimants to employment and support allowance (ESA) are not being asked to claim personal independence payment (PIP). PIP was introduced in April 2013 to replace disability living allowance (DLA) for working age people (between 16 and 64-years-old) and operates an entirely separate assessment from the work capability assessment used for ESA claims. From October 2013 we have begun inviting some existing claimants of DLA to claim PIP. The current arrangements for this can be found on the gov.uk website:

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/the-personal-independence-payment-toolkit-for-partners/the-personal-independence-payment-pip-toolkit-for-partners

We are continuously looking at ways to increase the number of decisions made on PIP claims and to improve the claims process.

Internal DWP processes and the assessment part of the process are taking longer than expected and some claimants are taking longer than anticipated to return their claim forms but we are working closely with both PIP assessment providers as part of our plans to speed up the end to end claimant journey. We have introduced improvements in communications to claimants about the type of evidence they can supply to speed up their claim and we are taking action to support the assessment providers in clearing backlogs of work.

Mr Godsiff: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions pursuant to the answer of 7 July 2014, Official Report, column 110W, on personal independence payment, if he will estimate the number of people who do not currently claim disability living allowance who go into debt while their claims for personal independence payment are pending. [206201]

Mr Harper: We have no plans to carry out such an estimate. As referenced in the earlier answer from the former Minister for Disabled People, my right hon. Friend the Member for Hemel Hempstead (Mike Penning), most people claiming personal independence payment (PIP) will already be receiving some element of financial support to meet day-to-day living expenses. If entitlement to PIP is established, payment will be backdated.

22 July 2014 : Column 1027W

Alex Cunningham: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions pursuant to the answer of 8 July 2014, Official Report, column 278W, on personal independence payments, what his Department's definition is of a mature system; and how he proposes that the maturity of the system will be measured. [206342]

Mr Harper: The publication of any new statistics series needs to ensure that it is based on robust data and the measures reflect the system that is being delivered and latest performance. The Department’s statisticians are currently looking at developing measures around clearance times and will pre-announce future publication in line with the UK Statistics Authority protocols.

Diana Johnson: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions if he will publish the guidance issued by his Department to Atos Healthcare on Part 2, Regulation 7 of the Social Security (Personal Independence Payment) Regulations 2013. [206501]

Mr Harper: The PIP Assessment Guide for Health Professionals carrying out assessments includes guidance on the assessment criteria and how they should be applied. This guidance can be accessed on the gov.uk website:

https://www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/210722/pip-assessment-guide.pdf

Diana Johnson: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what proportion of new claims for personal independence payments that were refused on application were subsequently allowed on appeal in the last 12 months. [206502]

Mr Harper: The information requested is not available. The Personal Independence Payment statistics release strategy, which the Department has made available on Gov.Uk, explains how DWP will manage the release of statistics and related information on Personal Independence Payment. This document explained that future releases may be extended to include numbers of reconsideration and appeals.

The Ministry of Justice publish Tribunal quarterly statistics on Gov.Uk, this includes information on appeals against PIP decisions.

Diana Johnson: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions how many new claims for personal independence payments are outstanding. [206503]

Mr Harper: Statistics on the number of claims outstanding are not routinely derived or published.

PIP statistics published on 5 June 2014 showed that by the end of March 2014, 349,000 PIP new claims had been registered and 83,900 PIP new claim decisions had been made. There are several reasons why a registered claim may not yet be determined. For example, the claimant has not yet returned their additional information form or is awaiting their assessment date, DWP have not yet made a decision on their claim or the claimant has advised that they wish to withdraw their claim.

Diana Johnson: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what proportion of new claims for personal independence payments have been successful since April 2013. [206504]

22 July 2014 : Column 1028W

Mr Harper: The available information on successful claims to personal independence payment was published on 5 June and is available from the gov.uk website:

https://www.gov.uk/government/publications/personal-independence-payment-official-statistics-june-2014

Diana Johnson: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions how many new claimants of personal independence payment have not received a decision within 26 weeks of the date of their claim. [206505]

Mr Harper: Statistics on clearance times are intended for future publication and the Department’s analysts are currently considering what information will be included in the release.

Personal Independence Payment: Brighton

Caroline Lucas: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions where people from Brighton and Hove are being asked to travel to in order to have face-to-face personal independence payment (PIP) interviews; what assessment he has made of the range of challenges faced by people going for assessment for PIP payments who are asked to travel to another town for a face-to-face interview; if he will estimate the cost to the public purse of taxis for people from Brighton and Hove who cannot use public transport to get to PIP assessments up to 90 minutes away from their homes; and if he will make a statement. [205786]

Mr Harper: There are currently two assessment centres situated in the BN21 and BN41 postcode area. A third assessment centre based in the BN3 postcode will be opening shortly.

PIP assessment providers must ensure that claimants do not have to travel for more than 90 minutes by public transport (single journey) for a consultation. This limit is an absolute maximum and we expect that only a small minority of claimants will have to make a journey approaching this duration. In the exceptional circumstance where a claimant is unable to make a journey within 90 minutes via public transport the assessment provider will offer either a home visit or the ability to use a taxi.

We are encouraging assessment providers to identify consultation venues that are as local and convenient as possible.

Payment of claimant expenses including taxi fares is the responsibility of the PIP assessment provider, the Department does not meet these costs.

This information is therefore not available within the Department.

Public Expenditure

Chris Bryant: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions how much his Department spent on (a) mobile telephones, (b) tablet computers and (c) office furniture in (i) 2010-11, (ii) 2011-12 and (iii) 2012-13. [206029]

Steve Webb: The Department for Work and Pensions is a geographically-dispersed organisation employing around 90,000 staff across some 870 sites, delivering services directly to around 22 million customers.

22 July 2014 : Column 1029W

Expenditure on mobile phones was £111,074 in 2010-11; £85,353 in 2011-12; and £196,427 in 2012-13.

Expenditure on tablet computers in 2010-11 and 2011-12 was nil. For 2012-13 I refer to the reply to PQ 151349 given to the right hon. Member for Wokingham (John Redwood) on 16 April 2013, Official Report, column 288W.

http://www.publications.parliament.uk/pa/cm201213/cmhansrd/cm130416/text/130416w0001.htm#1304171000035

The Department occupies the majority of its estate under a private finance initiative known as the PRIME Contract. Under this contract, the Department leases back fully-serviced accommodation from its private sector partner Telereal Trillium. The Department pays an inclusive unitary price for the space occupied, which includes the provision of office furniture. For those buildings and furniture requirements outside the scope of the PFI contract, the Department’s spend in 2010-11 was £603,686; 2011-12 was £537,468 and 2012-13 was £548,227. The Department’s estates rationalisation programme has saved some £60 million in 2011-12 and 2012-13.


Chris Bryant: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions how much his Department spent on (a) accommodation, (b) taxis or private cars and (c) alcoholic beverages in (i) 2010-11, (ii) 2011-12 and (iii) 2012-13. [206030]

Steve Webb: The Department is a geographically-dispersed organisation employing around 90,000 staff across some 870 sites, delivering services directly to around 22 million customers. The following table shows the expenditure on accommodation and taxis for the years in question. The average spend per head on accommodation for 2012-13 was in the region of £70.

The expenditure on taxis includes reimbursement of the cost of actual fares to support our disabled staff travelling to and from their place of work.

£
 (a) Accommodation(b) Taxi

2010-11

6,932,231

1,539,581

2011-12

5,281,218

1,201,506

2012-13

6,571,462

1,288,034

In the years 2008-09 and 2009-10 the Department’s spend on hotels under the previous Administration was £11,264,324 and £11,694,697 respectively. This has almost halved under this Administration. Spend on taxis for the year 2009-10 was £1,526,863.

As the purchase of alcohol is exceptional, there is no separate finance code to identify this spend.

Social Security Benefits

Mr Frank Field: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what assessment he has made of the potential effect on claimants of extending the waiting-day period for new benefit claims from three to seven days; and whether he will make a statement. [206446]

Esther McVey: The principle behind the waiting days policy is that benefits are not intended to provide financial support for very brief breaks in employment or periods

22 July 2014 : Column 1030W

of sickness. The waiting days change should not be seen in isolation but as part of a package of new support measures designed to help people to return to work. Our assessment of the effects of the change is continuing.

Social Security Benefits: Banff

Dr Whiteford: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what estimate he has made of the number of households in Banff and Buchan constituency whose incomes from benefit payments have reduced by (a) 10 per cent, (b) between 20 and 49 per cent and (c) 50 per cent or more since May 2010. [206253]

Esther McVey: The requested information is not available.

Social Security Benefits: Perth

Pete Wishart: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what estimate he has made of the number of households in Perth and North Perthshire constituency whose incomes from benefit payments have reduced by (a) 10 per cent, (b) between 20 and 49 per cent and (c) 50 per cent or more since May 2010. [206252]

Esther McVey: The requested information is not available.

Social Security Benefits: Preston

Mark Hendrick: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what information his Department holds on how many claims for benefits made by telephone by people in Preston constituency in 2014 to date were interrupted by the claimant running out of credit. [206310]

Steve Webb: The requested information is not available from current Management Information systems as no information relating to the causes of call terminations is gathered. As such, it is not possible to distinguish between reasons for termination or to distinguish between calls terminated by agents or callers.

The current Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) policy is that all calls should be free to our 0800 numbers to claim:

State pension;

Pension credit;

Jobseekers' allowance;

Income support;

Employment support allowance; and,

Personal independence payment.

It is free to call DWP 0800 numbers from all major landline providers.

DWP continues to have agreements with 02, Everything Everywhere (formerly Orange and T-Mobile), Vodafone (including Cable and Wireless), Three (also known as Hutchison 3G), Tesco Mobile and Virgin Mobile ahead of the OFCOM changes due in June 2015. This agreement allows many of our customers to make free mobile phone calls from their participating networks to the Department's 0800 customer numbers.

DWP is aware of possible concerns about call charges to enquiry and claims lines so agents will routinely offer to call a customer back if concerns are raised over the

22 July 2014 : Column 1031W

cost of the call. The Department also provides controlled access to telephones for claimants if required in support of job-searches or benefit enquiries.

During June 2014 the average duration of a call to the primary benefit new claims lines (ESA, IS and JSA) from connection to termination was 14 minutes and 43 seconds.

State Second Pension

Dr Huppert: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions how many men aged 65 receive additional state pension after a contracted-out deduction is applied. [206490]

Steve Webb: The number of men aged 65 who receive additional state pension after a contracted-out deduction is applied, as at September 2013, is 194,900.

Contracted out deductions are applied to additional state pension where people were contracted out between 1978 and 1997.

Notes:

1. The figure has been rounded to the nearest 100.

2. The 5% sample data provides some detail not available from the 100% data sources. DWP recommends that, where the detail is only available on the 5% sample data, the proportions derived should be applied to the overall 100% total for the benefit. Figures have been adjusted in line with 100% data.

Source:

Department for Work and Pensions, Information, Governance and Security Directorate, 5% sample

Universal Credit

Chris Bryant: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions how many officials are currently working on the universal credit programme. [206235]

Mr Harper: Current resource data shows a full time equivalent of 465 staff currently working on the Universal Credit Programme.

Work Capability Assessment

Glenda Jackson: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what the cost to his Department is of each work capability assessment carried out by Atos Healthcare (a) on paper and (b) through a face-to-face consultation; and if he will make a statement. [206415]

Mr Harper: The information you requested is commercially sensitive and releasing details of the unit cost of each assessment would, or would be likely to prejudice the commercial interests of Atos Healthcare.

Work Capability Assessment: Devon

Mr Streeter: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what steps he is taking to ensure that the backlog for work capability assessments in Plymouth and Devon is reduced. [206454]

Mr Harper: We announced last summer that we are procuring a new provider to deliver Work Capability Assessments. The priority for the new provider will be

22 July 2014 : Column 1032W

to deliver the best service possible for claimants, increase the volume of assessments carried out and reduce waiting times.

In the meantime, we have been working closely with Atos to improve their performance and reduce waiting times; putting in place a remedial adviser team to work with them to find further ways of meeting or exceeding performance as well as making changes to better manage the flow of work between Atos and the Department.

These measures are taking effect and the volume of outstanding cases is now reducing.

Work Programme

Steve McCabe: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what steps his Department takes to promote the use of IT facilities in public libraries by participants in the Work programme for job search and preparation; and if he will make a statement. [205781]

Esther McVey: Work programme providers have flexibility to innovate and to design support that addresses the needs of individuals and the local labour market, rather than having to follow one size fits all processes. It is at the discretion of providers whether they choose to advise individuals to use any particular public facilities.

Defence

Afghanistan

Paul Flynn: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what the total cost to HM Government was of helping to deliver equipment to the Kajaki Dam project in Afghanistan. [205514]

Mr Francois: This information is not held centrally and could be provided only at disproportionate cost.

Animal Experiments

Mr Kevan Jones: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many research experiments his Department has performed on animals since May 2010; and for what purpose and on which types of animal such experiments have been performed. [205234]

Mr Dunne: The Defence Science and Technology Laboratory (DSTL) returns the number of procedures involving animals to the Home Office on an annual basis in accordance with UK legislation. Details of the Annual DSTL returns to the Home Office from 2010 to 2013 are given in the following table.

 Animal species (type) 
 RodentsPigsNon-human primatesOtherRabbitsTotal

2010

9,007

140

244

47

9,438

2011

9,490

88

68

76

9,722

2012

8,616

75

114

9

16

8,830

2013

6,156

108

193

4

6,461

DSTL Porton Down conducts less than half of 1% of the animal experimentation carried out in the UK.

22 July 2014 : Column 1033W

DSTL is proud of the research undertaken by its staff and believes that the remit to provide safe and effective protective measures for the UK and its armed forces against the threat posed by chemical and biological weapons and enhance the treatment of conventional casualties on the battlefield, could not currently be achieved without the use of animals.

The main areas of use are as follows: regulatory testing; medical countermeasures to biological agents; medical countermeasures to chemical agents; provision of tissue; hazard assessment; treatment and decontamination of chemical agents; medical management and surgical care; detection and identification of biological weapons.

Each of the procedures has been undertaken in strict accordance with the terms of the Animals (Scientific Procedures) Act 1986. DSTL Porton Down is licensed to conduct research involving animals by the Home Office.

Apache AH-64 Helicopter

Mr Kevan Jones: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence (1) when his Department will announce a decision on the future of the Apache helicopter upgrade; [206336]

(2) what weighting his Department will give to (a) UK content, (b) UK employment and (c) a wider strategy of support for the UK helicopter production industry in taking a decision on the future of the Apache helicopter upgrade. [206337]

Mr Dunne: The Ministry of Defence is considering a number of options to sustain the attack helicopter capability. No decision has yet been taken on the procurement strategy.

Armed Forces Independence Payment

Gemma Doyle: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many new claims for armed forces independence payment have been made since April 2013. [206560]

Mr Brazier: As at 18 July 2014, a total of 766 claims have been received and granted for the armed forces independence payment. Four claims are currently being considered.

Gemma Doyle: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many people are currently in receipt of the armed forces independence payment. [206561]

Mr Dunne: There are currently 762 people in receipt of the Armed Forces Independence Payment.

Armed Forces: Crimes of Violence

Emily Thornberry: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many investigations of allegations of (a) rape, (b) sexual assault and (c) domestic violence where the alleged offending took place in the UK were investigated by the Royal Military Police in (A) 2010, (B) 2011 and (C) 2012. [199976]

22 July 2014 : Column 1034W

Anna Soubry: The table shows the number of recorded investigations by the Royal Military Police for rape, sexual assault and domestic violence where the alleged offending took place in the UK in the years 2010, 2011 and 2012.

 RapeSexual assault

2010

-

25

2011

5

20

2012

5

15

The figures have been rounded to the nearest five. The figure “-” represents a sample of less than five. The specific figure has not been disclosed to ensure that the alleged victim(s) cannot be identified. This is in line with the Sexual Offences (Amendments) Act 1976 and 1992.

Because of the way domestic violence statistics are recorded it is taking some time to collate the information. I will write to the hon. Member with an answer shortly.

The Royal Military Police is the Army’s police force and together with its Royal Navy and Royal Air Force counterparts, are collectively known as the Service Police. Under Home Office Circular 028/2008, which defines investigative jurisdiction in the UK, primacy generally rests with the civilian police, although the Service Police may take the lead in an investigation if both the suspect and the victim in a particular case are serving members of the armed forces.

Substantive answer from Anna Soubry to Emily Thornberry:

I undertook to write to you following your two recent Parliamentary Questions relating to domestic violence. I explained that because of the way domestic violence statistics are recorded it would take some time to collate the information. Having consulted further with my officials I have been advised that providing the information would be disproportionate cost and even if the work was completed it would not provide an accurate representation of domestic violence statistics.

Domestic violence is not a crime classification, but may be recorded under the crime classification of violence for example battery, assault or grievous bodily harm. For the Service Police to establish which offences are as a result of domestic violence would require an individual review of all cases; this would be disproportionate cost. Nor would the work produce accurate statistics because a victim of domestic violence may choose to report the matter to either the Service Police or the Civil police. For instance, if the victim lived in a garrison town such as Colchester, they may be more likely to report the matter to the Service Police, whereas if the victim lived in a non-garrison town such as Nottingham, they may be more likely to be report the incident to the Civil Police. There is no restriction on how or to whom the victim makes their complaint and therefore both Police Forces are likely to be investigating offences relating to domestic violence.

Domestic violence is a very important issue and we treat allegations of domestic violence very seriously. I would like to reassure you that where an allegation of domestic violence is made to the Service Police and they retain jurisdiction, they will investigate the matter fully or if an allegation is being investigated by the Civil Police, the Service Police will provide assistance as required. Equally, it is essential that victims of domestic violence are supported properly and the Department recognises the importance of the support offered by domestic violence charities, and our policy is to engage with such charities as Woman's Aid, Refuge, Respect and Victim Support as appropriate. You may also wish to be aware that the Department's policy on dealing with domestic violence is set out in Tri-Service Policy on Domestic Abuse and Sexual Violence, a copy of which has been placed in the Library of the House.

22 July 2014 : Column 1035W

Armed Forces: Disciplinary Proceedings

Mark Hendrick: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many members of the armed forces have faced a court martial since 2010; and how many of those were serving in active combat roles at the time. [205625]

Mr Brazier: Information in respect of the number of armed forces personnel who have faced a court martial for the period 1 January 2010 to 31 December 2013 is detailed, by service, in the following table. Information for 2014 is not yet available.

 Naval serviceArmyRoyal Air Force

2010

76

546

36

2011

63

623

33

2012

66

520

17

2013

59

425

28

Note: Naval service includes the Royal Marines

Some information is held in respect of how many of those were serving on operations at the time of the alleged offence but will take time to collate, and the Minister for Defence Personnel, Welfare and Veterans, my hon. Friend the Member for Broxtowe (Anna Soubry), will write to the hon. Member when it is available.

Armed Forces: Pensions

Vernon Coaker: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what his policy is on the uprating of the pensions of UK veterans living overseas. [206411]

Mr Dunne: The various Armed Forces Pension Schemes are occupational pension schemes and are uprated every April by the UK's Consumer Price Index from the previous September. There is no impact on this uprating if a former member of the Armed Forces is living overseas.

Army Reserve

Vernon Coaker: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many members of the Army Reserve who returned injured from operations have accessed rehabilitation support. [205165]

Mr Dunne: 67 Army Reservists who returned from operations with injuries have accessed rehabilitation support.

Army: Northern Ireland

Mr Gregory Campbell: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what plans his Department has to promote recruitment to the army cadets in Northern Ireland in 2014-15. [206163]

Mr Brazier: There are presently over 3,000 cadets in Northern Ireland of which over 2,000 are Army cadets. These cadets are drawn from across a wide spectrum of the community.

The Reserve Forces and Cadets Association of Northern Ireland are planning to launch a new recruitment campaign in August working in partnership with a number of external agencies.

22 July 2014 : Column 1036W

Army: Training

Alex Cunningham: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence (1) what the total cost of running Phase 1 training at AFC Harrogate including trainee salaries and associated costs was in the most recent year for which figures are available; [206118]

(2) what the total cost of running the Combat Infantryman's Course (Phase 1 and 2 training) at ITC Catterick including trainee salaries and associated costs was in the most recent year for which figures are available. [206119]

Anna Soubry: I refer the hon. Member to the answer I gave on 23 June 2014, Official Report, column 88W, to the hon. Member for Bridgend (Mrs Moon). In addition, the annual salary for new entrants is £14,492 rising to £17,945 on completion of Phase 1 training in 2014-15. The number of trainees may vary each year.

Buildings

Mr Kevan Jones: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how much has been spent on refurbishing (a) gym and leisure facilities, (b) cafeteria and (c) interior decoration within (i) his Department and (ii) his Department-owned buildings in (A) 2013 and (B) 2014 to date. [205087]

Mr Dunne: This information is not held centrally and could be provided only at disproportionate cost.

Conflict Pool

Mr Kevan Jones: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how much his Department has spent from the Conflict Pool in each country in each year since its launch. [205191]

Mr Brazier: The tri-departmental Conflict Pool in its current form was created in 2010 and is financed from HM Treasury under the Conflict Resources settlement. It is managed tri-departmentally, with resources transferred to the Ministry of Defence (MOD) to fund those projects the MOD will undertake. The Conflict Pool is managed on a regional programme, not country basis.

The MOD has funded projects in all of the Conflict Pool’s five regional programmes: in Afghanistan; in Africa where activity has included work in Nigeria, Somalia and Kenya; in the Middle East and North Africa including projects in Syria, Libya and the Occupied Palestinian Territories; in South Asia where activity has mostly been in Pakistan; and activity through the Wider Europe programme in the Western Balkans, the Caucasus and Central Asia. Activity in all these programmes includes regional, cross-border and multilateral projects therefore data is not held on a purely country basis. The MOD also funds activity through the Strengthening Alliances and Partnerships programme (SAP).

Regional and thematic figures by programme are in the following table.

£
 2009-102010-112011-122012-132013-14

Africa

21,955,253

25,155,043

15,349,300

13,969,330

17,451,482

Afghanistan

1,944,340

3,051,185

515,538

1,296,540

1,022,957

22 July 2014 : Column 1037W

MENA

2,896,937

2,675,774

3,371,921

3,804,968

10,945,265

South Asia

7,124,261

8,661,400

1,305,900

305,364

494,011

SAP1

3,516,826

2,124,898

2,074,708

3,123,000

3,790,000

Wider Europe

22,606,731

20,576,782

19,722,746

19,777,805

19,693,366

1 Strengthening Alliances and Partnerships programme; previously strategic support to International Organisations programme.

Defence: Procurement

Sir Nicholas Soames: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence if he will place in the Library copies of his Department's (a) Ships Acquisition Model, (b) Maritime Composite Options Model, (c) Material Strategy: Change Programme Model, (d) Force Structure Cost Model and (e) Strategic Balance of Investment Toolset. [205545]

Mr Dunne: There is no single Ships Acquisition Model; each individual project will have its own procurement strategy, underpinned by EU procurement Regulations.

The Maritime Composite Option was a workstream through which the Ministry of Defence and BAE Systems negotiated how best to sustain the future shipbuilding programme, and the key elements of the agreement were announced by the then Secretary of State for Defence (Philip Hammond) on 6 November 2013, Official Report, columns 251-54. This is underpinned by a Commercial Principles Agreement and I am withholding this information as its disclosure would prejudice commercial interests.

There is no document titled the Material Strategy Change Programme Model. However, on 14 May 2014, copies of the Defence Equipment and Support (DE&S) Corporate Plan and Framework Document were published internally, placed in the Library of the House and published on the gov.uk website at:

https://www.gov.uk/search?q=DE%26S+framework+document

The Corporate Plan sets out the DE&S strategic objectives and timelines for the next three years. The Framework Document includes the function and governance arrangements for the new DE and S, including the freedoms.

I am withholding details of the Force Structures Cost Model and the Strategic Balance of Investment Model as disclosure would, or would be likely to, prejudice the capability, effectiveness or security of the armed forces.

Disclosure of Information

Mr Kevan Jones: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence with reference to the answer of 14 November 2011, Official Report, column 526W, on disclosure of information, if he will publish the findings of the inquiry into the unauthorised disclosure of the letter between the former Secretary of State and the Prime Minister which appeared in the Daily Telegraph on 28 September 2010. [205160]

Michael Fallon: I refer the hon. Member to the answer my predecessor, my right hon. Friend the Member for Runnymede and Weybridge (Mr Hammond), gave on 23 May 2012, Official Report, column 722W.

22 July 2014 : Column 1038W

Middle East

Dr Julian Lewis: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what recent assessment his Department has made of the UK's ability to mount persistent and enduring aerial surveillance of strategically important areas east of the Suez Canal after UK withdrawal from Afghanistan; what assets will be required for this purpose after 2015; and if he will make a statement. [205177]

Mr Francois: The UK’s military presence east of the Suez Canal is routinely reviewed to ensure that we have the right capabilities to support and achieve our military tasks, such as Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance (ISR) platforms. UK forces contribute to a variety of counter-terrorism, counter-narcotic and security operations. Redeployment from Afghanistan will allow the reallocation of some of these assets to other priority tasks, which includes ISR support.

Public Expenditure

Sir Nicholas Soames: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence with reference to the Main Supply Estimates 2014-15, HC 1233 of Session 2013-14, for what reasons he seeks Parliamentary authority to appropriate £7.5 billion in capital expenditure instead of the £8.7 billion allocated in the June 2013 spending round; and if he will make a statement. [205676]

Michael Fallon: An explanation of the variance between the 2010 CSR settlement and main estimates 2014-15 was provided in written evidence to the Defence Committee and published on 24 June 2014:

http://data.parliament.uk/writtenevidence/committeeevidence.svc/evidencedocument/defence-committee/mod-main-estimates-201415/written/10953.html

RAF Lossiemouth

Sir Menzies Campbell: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what the cost has been to date of all Typhoon Force-related capital works at RAF Lossiemouth; and what estimate he has made of the total cost of facilitating the future operation of the Typhoon Force and the Northern Quick Reaction Alert facility at that base. [202098]

Mr Francois: By the end of financial year 2013-14, approximately £17 million had been spent on Typhoon-related works at Lossiemouth. The estimated capital costs for facilitating Typhoon Force-related operations, including the Northern Quick Reaction Alert facility, at RAF Lossiemouth is anticipated to be some £87 million.

The Basing Review, which was announced in July 2011, assessed what was best for Defence as a whole. This followed the strategic defence and security review in 2010, which stated the RAF needed three not four RAF fast jet bases.

The decisions made regarding RAF Leuchars and RAF Lossiemouth were also necessary to establish a coherent plan for basing the Army following its return from Germany and the opportunity to realise receipts by disposing of high value estate, while ensuring the build-up of the Typhoon force.

22 July 2014 : Column 1039W

Sir Menzies Campbell: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence what Typhoon Force mission-specific infrastructure at RAF Leuchars has been identified for deconstruction as a result of the transfer of the transfer of the Typhoon Force to RAF Lossiemouth. [202100]

Mr Francois: No Typhoon mission-specific infrastructure at RAF Leuchars has been identified for deconstruction, nor is it likely to be.

Reserve Forces

Vernon Coaker: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many reservists are signed up to offer security support to the Police Service of Scotland and other civil and Commonwealth Games authorities for this summer's Commonwealth Games. [205203]

Mr Francois: 229 reservists have been assigned to the Commonwealth Games in support of the Police Service of Scotland.

Senior Civil Servants

John Woodcock: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many senior civil servants appointed to positions in his Department since 2010 were previously (a) political appointees within that Department and (b) employed by a political party. [204321]

Mr Brazier: This information could be provided only at disproportionate cost.

Staff

Sir Nicholas Soames: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence if he will place in the Library copies of his Department's (a) Navy Manpower Model, (b) Army Manpower Model, (c) Royal Air Force Manpower Model, (d) Civilian Manpower Model and (e) New Employment Model. [205546]

Mr Dunne: I am withholding the information requested as its disclosure would prejudice the capability, effectiveness and security of the armed forces. Furthermore, under data protection legislation, the detailed personnel information contained within the models cannot be disclosed.

Additionally, the model is based on computer programmes, which run on suitably accredited computers. Therefore, it is not possible to place a meaningful 'model' into the Library of the House.

Training

Mr Kevan Jones: To ask the Secretary of State for Defence how many individuals in his Department have participated in (a) disability awareness and (b) LGBT awareness training in each year since 2010. [205047]

Mr Brazier: The information is not held centrally and could be provided only at disproportionate cost.

22 July 2014 : Column 1040W

Attorney-General

Administrative Scheme for the “On the Runs” Independent Review

Lady Hermon: To ask the Attorney-General if he will publish the advice the Law Officers' Department gave to Lady Hallett on the lawfulness of the administrative scheme operated for the benefit of on-the-runs. [206532]

The Solicitor-General: The then Attorney-General, the right hon. and learned Member for Beaconsfield (Mr Grieve), and a member of the Attorney-General's Office gave evidence to the Hallett Inquiry but did so as witnesses rather than legal advisers. Lady Justice Hallett reached her own view on the lawfulness of the administrative scheme.

Billing

Mr Watson: To ask the Attorney-General what the value is of duplicate supplier payments identified by the Law Officers' Departments since 2010; and what proportion of such payments have since been recovered in each of the last two financial years. [205965]

The Solicitor-General: The Treasury Solicitor's Department (TSol) does not hold a register of duplicate payments. Appropriate controls are in place to prevent duplicate payments and if any are identified, action is taken to recover overpaid monies. As at 18 July 2014, there are no known unrecovered duplicate payments.

Identification of the value of duplicate payments made by TSol, the Attorney-General's Office and HM Crown Prosecution Service Inspectorate since 2010 would require detailed analysis of accounting and other records which would incur disproportionate cost. However, in the three months since April 2014, TSol have identified and recovered duplicate payments with a total value of £13,068 representing 0.05% of the value of payments made during this period.

Available records show that, since April 2010, the Serious Fraud Office has identified and recovered £46,000 in duplicate supplier payments. No other duplicate payments have been identified.

The following table shows the value of duplicate payments identified by the Crown Prosecution Service (CPS) since 2009-10 and the proportion of such payments recovered in each of the last two financial years is presented in the following table:

Duplicate payments and recoveries, 2009-14
 Duplicate payments (£)Recovered proportion (%)

2009-10

135,958

2010-11

256,803

2011-12

72,729

2012-13

91,578

96.2

2013-14

149,124

98.8