Written questions and answers

Written questions allow Members of Parliament to ask government ministers for information on the work, policy and activities of government departments.

Historical written answers can be found in Hansard.

Find the latest written questions and answers for the 2015-16 session below. We welcome your feedback on this service.

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UIN

Unique Identifying Number – Every written question in the House of Commons has a UIN per Parliament. In the House of Lords each written questions has a UIN per parliamentary session.
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Q
(Brighton, Pavilion)
Asked on: 14 June 2016
Department of Health
NHS: Sustainable Development
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, pursuant to the Answer of 23 May 2016 to Question 37279, if he will make it his policy to ensure there is a formal public consultation on every Sustainability and Transformation Plan footprint.
A
Answered by: George Freeman
Answered on: 28 June 2016

As set out in the NHS Shared Planning Guidance, published in December 2015, the success of Sustainability and Transformation Plans (STPs) will depend on having an open, engaging, and iterative process that involves patients, carers, citizens, clinicians, local community partners including the independent and voluntary sectors, and local government through health and wellbeing boards. The arm’s length bodies responsible for the NHS Five Year Forward View – NHS England, NHS Improvement, the Care Quality Commission, Public Health England, Health Education England and the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence – have asked for local engagement plans as part of the STP process, building where appropriate on existing engagement through health and wellbeing boards and other local arrangements.

When plans are ready, normal rules around engagement and public consultation will apply. The arm’s length bodies will be holding conversations with each area to assess their plans for local engagement.

Q
(Brighton, Pavilion)
Asked on: 28 June 2016
Department of Health
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what his policy is on the (a) full or (b) part privatisation of NHS Professionals; and if he will make a statement.
Q
(Brighton, Pavilion)
Asked on: 14 June 2016
Department for Energy and Climate Change
Oil: Exploration
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change, pursuant to the Answer of 23 May 2016 to Question 39080, if she will make it her policy to lay the Committee on Climate Change report on the compatibility of UK onshore petroleum with meeting UK carbon budgets and the Government's response before Parliament prior to any decision is taken to reverse (a) the planning decision against fracking made by Lancashire County Council and (b) any other planning decisions that are made by local authorities concerning the extraction of shale gas.
A
Answered by: Andrea Leadsom
Answered on: 27 June 2016

Further to the Answer to Question 39080, we are continuing to consider the report and will lay it before Parliament with our response in due course.

Q
(Brighton, Pavilion)
Asked on: 14 June 2016
Department for Transport
Railways: Greater London
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, pursuant to the Answer of 14 June 2016 to Question 40199, whether the modelling was (a) carried out in-house by Network Rail or (b) outsourced by Network Rail to another party; and if he will make a statement.
A
Answered by: Claire Perry
Answered on: 27 June 2016

Pursuant to the Answer of 14 June 2016 to Question 40199, Network Rail carried out the timetable modelling associated with the London Bridge works in-house.

Q
(Brighton, Pavilion)
Asked on: 15 June 2016
Department for Transport
London-Brighton Railway Line
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, pursuant to the Answer of 31 May 2016 to Question 37855, on the London to Brighton railway line, if he will commit in principle to upgrade the Brighton main line, prior to the High Level Operating Statement in 2017.
A
Answered by: Claire Perry
Answered on: 27 June 2016

Network Rail is currently developing proposals for the upgrade of the Brighton Main Line, following the conclusions of the Sussex Route Study. Government intends to articulate its emerging priorities for improvements to the national network (including possible upgrades to the Brighton Main Line) during 2017.

Q
(Brighton, Pavilion)
Asked on: 15 June 2016
Department for Transport
Railways: Croydon
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what steps he is taking to (a) assess and (b) address the effect on rail services of the infrastructure bottleneck at Croydon.
A
Answered by: Claire Perry
Answered on: 27 June 2016

Network Rail’s Sussex Route Study has assessed capacity constraints on the Brighton Main Line. It is increasingly apparent the junctions around Croydon create a complex operating environment for train operators, which translates into constrained capacity and potential delays for passengers. As we develop our emerging priorities for improvements to the national network in 2017, we will give due consideration to improving these junctions.

Q
(Brighton, Pavilion)
Asked on: 15 June 2016
Department for Transport
London-Brighton Railway Line
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, how much his Department has allocated for Network Rail to produce a feasibility study on the Brighton Mainline Upgrade; and whether he plans for that funding to continue up to 2020.
A
Answered by: Claire Perry
Answered on: 27 June 2016

Network Rail has authorised £8m from its current financial settlement to develop proposals for the upgrade of the Brighton Main Line. The Government will subsequently consider what, if any, additional funding is required, based on its emerging priorities for improvements to the national network.

This feasibility study is additional to the improvements that will already be delivered in the years up to 2020 by the massive Thameslink programme which will provide substantial additional capacity and improved frequencies together with 1,140 new carriages serving destinations including Brighton.

Q
(Brighton, Pavilion)
Asked on: 15 June 2016
Department for Transport
London-Brighton Railway Line
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what assessment he has made of what land is required in (a) the Croydon area and (b) other areas to allow for the Brighton Mainline Upgrade; and whether he plans to safeguard that land for transport purposes.
A
Answered by: Claire Perry
Answered on: 27 June 2016

As part of its work developing proposals for the upgrade of the Brighton Main Line, Network Rail has and will continue to assess land requirements. The Government will include any considerations in respect of land, including planning requirements, in any future investment decisions in the corridor.

Q
(Brighton, Pavilion)
[N]
Close

Named Day

'Named day' questions only occur in the House of Commons. The MP tabling the question specifies the date on which they should receive an answer. MPs may not table more than five named day questions on a single day.

Asked on: 15 June 2016
Department for Transport
London-Brighton Railway Line
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, whether he has investigated, in his Department's work assessing the reasons for delays and cancellations on the Brighton Mainline, whether or not GTR are preventing staff who took part in recent strike action from working overtime; and if he will make a statement.
A
Answered by: Claire Perry
Answered on: 27 June 2016

GTR are providing the Department with information on the current disruption in line with their franchise agreement. Management of staff is a matter between GTR and its employees, however I have been assured by GTR that it is not the case that they are preventing staff who participated in industrial action from working overtime.

Q
(Brighton, Pavilion)
Asked on: 24 June 2016
Department for Transport
Govia Thameslink Railway
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, pursuant to the Answer of 20 June 2016 to Question 40384, on Govia Thameslink Railway, whether Ministers requested a copy of the modelling analysis after those discussions; whether minutes were taken of those discussions; what questions Ministers asked during those discussions; and if he will make a statement.
Q
(Brighton, Pavilion)
[N]
Close

Named Day

'Named day' questions only occur in the House of Commons. The MP tabling the question specifies the date on which they should receive an answer. MPs may not table more than five named day questions on a single day.

Asked on: 24 June 2016
Department for Transport
Govia Thameslink Railway
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, if he will place in the Library a copy of the Rail Minister's response to the letter of 20 June 2016 from the Chief Executive of the Campaign for Better Transport on the Thameslink, Southern and Great Northern franchise.
Q
(Brighton, Pavilion)
Asked on: 24 June 2016
Department for Transport
Railways: Compensation
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, pursuant to the Answer of 13 June 2016 to Question 40383, whether the Government has the power under current delay repay infrastructure to allow people to claim compensation for 15-minute delays before it makes other planned improvements to compensation arrangements; and if he will make a statement.
Q
(Brighton, Pavilion)
Asked on: 10 June 2016
Department for Education
Special Educational Needs: East Sussex
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, how much funding for children and young people with special educational needs was allocated to East Sussex local authority area through the dedicated schools grant in each of the last three years.
A
Answered by: Mr Sam Gyimah
Answered on: 20 June 2016

Funding for children and young people with special educational needs (SEN) is allocated to local authorities through the dedicated schools grant (DSG), which includes both funding to be delegated to mainstream schools, and funding for the additional costs associated with educating children and young people with high needs.

The Department does not allocate specific amounts of funding for children and young people with SEN within the funding allocated to local authorities for their mainstream schools. Schools are funded through a formula set by their local authority, and local authorities are required to delegate funds to a level that enables schools to meet the additional costs of pupils with SEN, up to £6,000 per annum. For those pupils whose additional support costs more than £6,000 the local authority pays top-up funding to the schools from their high needs budget.

East Sussex County Council’s high needs allocation, within the dedicated schools grant, in each of the last three years was as follows:

2015-16: £44.06 million

2014-15: £42.82 million

2013-14: £40.94 million

Q
(Brighton, Pavilion)
Asked on: 13 June 2016
Department for Transport
Railways: Compensation
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, with reference to the contribution of the Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Transport of 11 May 2016, Official Report, HC Deb, column 692, when officials began working on the proposals to implement the 15-minute threshold for rail journey compensation; from what date he expects that customers will be able claim compensation under that threshold; and if he will make a statement.
A
Answered by: Claire Perry
Answered on: 20 June 2016

We are committed to improving compensation arrangements for passengers. The Chancellor announced in his Autumn 2015 Spending Review that passengers will soon have access to compensation when trains are over 15 minutes late. We expect to make an announcement on this in the next few months.

We will work with the rail industry to agree the best possible deal for passengers in implementing this improvement and will set out the details of when the new arrangements will be in place shortly.

Q
(Brighton, Pavilion)
Asked on: 13 June 2016
Department for Transport
Govia Thameslink Railway
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, if he will release a copy of the modelling analysis referred to in the GTR Remedial Plan, published on 12 February 2016, on the combined impact of the infrastructure restrictions at London Bridge, the diversion of Thameslink services and the increased use of London Victoria as a terminus on the punctuality and reliability of the network.
A
Answered by: Claire Perry
Answered on: 20 June 2016

The results of Network Rail’s modelling analysis of the combined impacts of changes to rail operations at London Bridge were discussed with rail operators and the Department for Transport. The Department does not, however, hold a copy of this analysis.

Q
(Brighton, Pavilion)
Asked on: 13 June 2016
Department for Transport
Railways: Fares
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, when he expects part-time season tickets to be available to all rail passengers.
A
Answered by: Claire Perry
Answered on: 20 June 2016

Progress is being made on the delivery of more flexible tickets. We are challenging operators to introduce products which give passengers more flexibility. This month c2c launched their flexi-day season on their smartcard. Passengers who commute three times a week to London from Southend can save over £135 a year with the new ticket. Other operators such as Govia Thameslink Railway and Arriva Trains Wales already offer flexible products on selected routes that can provide passengers who work or commute part-time a better deal.

Q
(Brighton, Pavilion)
Asked on: 20 June 2016
Department for Transport
London-Brighton Railway Line: Tickets
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, pursuant to the Answer of 20 June 2016 to Question 40385, whether he has had discussions with Govia Thameslink Railway on (a) for what reasons the selected routes offering flexible products do not include services on the Brighton Main Line (BML) and (b) what the timeline is for provision of part-time season tickets for passengers using the BML; and if he will make a statement.
Q
(Brighton, Pavilion)
Asked on: 15 June 2016
Department of Health
Dementia
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what steps he is taking to increase awareness of risk reduction and prevention of dementia; and what information he holds on the effect of (a) alcohol, exercise and weight and (b) other risk factors; and if he will make a statement.
Q
(Brighton, Pavilion)
Asked on: 06 June 2016
Home Office
Asylum: EU Law
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, when she plans to publish guidance on the Dublin III regulation.
A
Answered by: James Brokenshire
Answered on: 14 June 2016

The Dublin III Regulation clearly sets out the criteria and process for determining responsibility for asylum cases. Caseworkers refer to the detail of the Regulation when determining cases, along with the relevant case law. We are aiming to update and publish some additional guidance shortly. Caseworkers have access to policy and legal advisers on a regular basis.

Q
(Brighton, Pavilion)
Asked on: 06 June 2016
Ministry of Justice
Asylum: Appeals
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, in how many applications to appeal a decision on (a) an asylum application and (b) an application for refugee family union in the First Tier Tribunal Asylum and Immigration Chamber the applicant paid a fee in the latest period for which figures are available.
A
Answered by: Mr Shailesh Vara
Answered on: 14 June 2016

There were 2,890 applications to appeal an asylum decision where a fee was paid by the applicant in the calendar year 2015.

The number of applications to appeal a refugee family union decision is not collected by HM Courts and Tribunals Service.

Notes to figures:

1. The figure includes asylum, protection and revocation of protection appeals because they come under the umbrella term of ‘asylum’.

2. Figures provided are taken from internal management information and not subject to the same quality checks as Official Statistics.

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