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 2017-19 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
(Sheffield South East)
[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: 05 September 2019
Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government
Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government: Public Consultation
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, which of his Department's consultations have not been (a) completed and (b) analysed and responded to; and on what date those consultations (a) commenced, (b) closed and (c) are expected to report.
A
Answered by: Jake Berry
Answered on: 08 October 2019

As set out on Gov.uk, MHCLG currently has 33 live consultations. Of these, 25 consultations have closed and the Department intends to respond in due course. 8 consultations are open. They are:

Homelessness Reduction Act 2017: call for evidence

A new deal for renting: resetting the balance of rights and responsibilities between landlords and tenants

The Future Homes Standard: Changes to Part L and Part F of the Buildings Regulations for new dwellings

Review of local authority financial reporting and external audit: call for views

Local Government Finance Settlement 2020 to 2021: technical consultation

Rogue landlord database reform

Sprinklers and other fire safety measures in new high-rise blocks of flats

Proposed reforms to permitted development rights to support the deployment of 5G and extend mobile coverage

Q
(Sheffield South East)
Asked on: 24 September 2019
Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government
Help to Buy Scheme: Costs
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, if he will publish the (a) projected annual net costs of Help to Buy from its inception until 2021-22 as set out in the original business case, (b) actual annual net costs from inception until 2018-2019, and (c) current projected net costs until 2021-22.
A
Answered by: Esther McVey
Answered on: 08 October 2019

It has not proved possible to respond to the hon. Member in the time available before Prorogation.

Q
(Sheffield South East)
Asked on: 24 September 2019
Home Office
Personation
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what estimate he has made of the number of reports of identity theft and fraud made to Action Fraud which were not recorded as crimes in each year from 2015 to 2019.
A
Answered by: Brandon Lewis
Answered on: 08 October 2019

It has not proved possible to respond to the Hon Member in the time available before Prorogation.

Grouped Questions: 290289
Q
(Sheffield South East)
Asked on: 24 September 2019
Home Office
Personation
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, how many reports of identity theft and fraud made to Action Fraud were referred to trading standards departments for investigation in each year from 2015 to 2019.
A
Answered by: Brandon Lewis
Answered on: 08 October 2019

It has not proved possible to respond to the Hon Member in the time available before Prorogation.

Grouped Questions: 290288
Q
(Sheffield South East)
[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: 05 September 2019
Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government
Local Government Finance
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, with reference to the Spending Round 2019, what the planned increase in the (a) grant to and (b) spending power of local councils for the next financial year will be in (a) real and (b) cash terms; and what estimate he has made of the increase in council tax required to achieve the spending power increase.
A
Answered by: Luke Hall
Answered on: 07 October 2019

The government recently announced the largest year-on-year real terms increase in spending power for local government in almost a decade. Core Spending Power is expected to rise by £2.9 billion from £46.2 billion to £49.1 billion in 2020-21, a cash increase of 6.3 per cent and an estimated real terms increase of 4.3 per cent.

This includes an additional £1 billion grant for adult and children’s social care, on top of the continuation of existing social care grants. Subject to consultation and the House of Commons approving council tax referendum principles, councils will have access to an additional £1.6 billion through council tax, as part of the Local Government Finance Settlement, based on a 2 per cent core referendum principle and a 2 per cent adult social care precep

Q
(Sheffield South East)
Asked on: 24 September 2019
Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy
All Star Lanes
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, whether she has commissioned an investigation into whether the Directors of All Star Lanes which went into administration should be disqualified from being company directors; and if he will make a statement.
A
Answered by: Kelly Tolhurst
Answered on: 03 October 2019

When a company enters administration, the administrator must, usually within three months, provide a confidential report to the Insolvency Service on the conduct of the directors of the company. The Insolvency Service will assess the information received and will collect information from third parties including other government departments, to determine whether or not a full investigation is required. This may ultimately lead to director disqualification proceedings or other enforcement action.

As the administration only occurred last week, the administrator’s report is not expected yet.

Q
(Sheffield South East)
Asked on: 24 September 2019
Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government
Right to Buy Scheme
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, what recent estimate his Department has made of proportion of homes purchased under the right to buy schemes that are now owned by private landlords.
A
Answered by: Esther McVey
Answered on: 01 October 2019

The Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government does not collect this information. Under the Right to Buy there are restrictions in place to discourage re-sale within 5 years of purchase, and mortgage providers and landlords may also place restrictions on letting in the terms of the sale.

Q
(Sheffield South East)
[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: 05 September 2019
Department for Transport
High Speed 2 Independent Review
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, if he will amend the terms of reference for the independent review of HS2 to include consideration of commencing construction of Phase 2b to Manchester, Sheffield and Leeds before Phase 1 is completed.
Q
(Sheffield South East)
[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: 05 September 2019
Department for Transport
M1
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what plans his Department has to install Stopped Vehicle Detection on the smart motorway sections of the M1.
Q
(Sheffield South East)
Asked on: 27 June 2019
Department of Health and Social Care
Genetics: Screening
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, which diagnostic tests will whole genome sequencing replace, particularly for blood cancers.
A
Answered by: Caroline Dinenage
Answered on: 05 July 2019

During 2019, the National Health Service will begin to offer whole genome sequencing (WGS) as part of clinical care for:

- Seriously ill children likely to have a rare genetic disorder;

- People with one of 21 rare conditions where current evidence supports early adoption of WGS as a diagnostic test; and

- People with specific types of cancer for which there is likely to be the greatest patient benefit from using WGS – children with cancer, sarcoma and acute myeloid leukaemia.

WGS will only replace existing diagnostic tests once the testing is demonstrated to be clinically safe to replace existing diagnostic testing. Initially, existing diagnostic testing will continue to be performed alongside WGS testing where clinically appropriate. This will continue until WGS is able to fully support clinical decision making within clinically appropriate timescales.

Current testing for blood cancers includes a number of diagnostic tests, the current expectation is that WGS will not be used to replace tests that require very fast turnaround times (under 24 hours) or high sensitivity.

WGS and non-WGS testing that will be available as part of clinical care is outlined in the National Genomic Test Directory at the following link:

https://www.england.nhs.uk/publication/national-genomic-test-directories/

The UK Genetic Testing Network (UKGTN) published the NHS Directory of Genetic Disorders/Genes for Diagnostic Testing, which evaluated and recommended genetic tests for rare and inherited disorders for the National Health Service across the UK. However, there was not an equivalent for cancer genomic testing. The National Genomic Test Directory specifies which genomic tests are commissioned by the NHS in England, the technology by which they are available, and the patients who will be eligible to access to a test.

The National Genomic Test Directory will be updated on an annual basis and NHS England will implement a clear and transparent process, supported by a Clinical and Scientific Expert Panel, to determine which tests are available within the NHS. This will include reviewing any tests that may be retired or replaced by more modern technology, such as WGS. As the price of WGS falls and the clinical evidence improves, we envisage that it will be extended to more conditions and therefore more patients.

Grouped Questions: 270282 | 270283
Q
(Sheffield South East)
Asked on: 27 June 2019
Department of Health and Social Care
Genetics: Screening
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, whether the National Genomic Test Directory directly replaces the NHS Directory of Genetic Disorders/Genes for Diagnostic Testing.
A
Answered by: Caroline Dinenage
Answered on: 05 July 2019

During 2019, the National Health Service will begin to offer whole genome sequencing (WGS) as part of clinical care for:

- Seriously ill children likely to have a rare genetic disorder;

- People with one of 21 rare conditions where current evidence supports early adoption of WGS as a diagnostic test; and

- People with specific types of cancer for which there is likely to be the greatest patient benefit from using WGS – children with cancer, sarcoma and acute myeloid leukaemia.

WGS will only replace existing diagnostic tests once the testing is demonstrated to be clinically safe to replace existing diagnostic testing. Initially, existing diagnostic testing will continue to be performed alongside WGS testing where clinically appropriate. This will continue until WGS is able to fully support clinical decision making within clinically appropriate timescales.

Current testing for blood cancers includes a number of diagnostic tests, the current expectation is that WGS will not be used to replace tests that require very fast turnaround times (under 24 hours) or high sensitivity.

WGS and non-WGS testing that will be available as part of clinical care is outlined in the National Genomic Test Directory at the following link:

https://www.england.nhs.uk/publication/national-genomic-test-directories/

The UK Genetic Testing Network (UKGTN) published the NHS Directory of Genetic Disorders/Genes for Diagnostic Testing, which evaluated and recommended genetic tests for rare and inherited disorders for the National Health Service across the UK. However, there was not an equivalent for cancer genomic testing. The National Genomic Test Directory specifies which genomic tests are commissioned by the NHS in England, the technology by which they are available, and the patients who will be eligible to access to a test.

The National Genomic Test Directory will be updated on an annual basis and NHS England will implement a clear and transparent process, supported by a Clinical and Scientific Expert Panel, to determine which tests are available within the NHS. This will include reviewing any tests that may be retired or replaced by more modern technology, such as WGS. As the price of WGS falls and the clinical evidence improves, we envisage that it will be extended to more conditions and therefore more patients.

Grouped Questions: 270281 | 270283
Q
(Sheffield South East)
Asked on: 27 June 2019
Department of Health and Social Care
Genetics: Screening
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, how will new tests be added to the National Genomic Test Directory.
A
Answered by: Caroline Dinenage
Answered on: 05 July 2019

During 2019, the National Health Service will begin to offer whole genome sequencing (WGS) as part of clinical care for:

- Seriously ill children likely to have a rare genetic disorder;

- People with one of 21 rare conditions where current evidence supports early adoption of WGS as a diagnostic test; and

- People with specific types of cancer for which there is likely to be the greatest patient benefit from using WGS – children with cancer, sarcoma and acute myeloid leukaemia.

WGS will only replace existing diagnostic tests once the testing is demonstrated to be clinically safe to replace existing diagnostic testing. Initially, existing diagnostic testing will continue to be performed alongside WGS testing where clinically appropriate. This will continue until WGS is able to fully support clinical decision making within clinically appropriate timescales.

Current testing for blood cancers includes a number of diagnostic tests, the current expectation is that WGS will not be used to replace tests that require very fast turnaround times (under 24 hours) or high sensitivity.

WGS and non-WGS testing that will be available as part of clinical care is outlined in the National Genomic Test Directory at the following link:

https://www.england.nhs.uk/publication/national-genomic-test-directories/

The UK Genetic Testing Network (UKGTN) published the NHS Directory of Genetic Disorders/Genes for Diagnostic Testing, which evaluated and recommended genetic tests for rare and inherited disorders for the National Health Service across the UK. However, there was not an equivalent for cancer genomic testing. The National Genomic Test Directory specifies which genomic tests are commissioned by the NHS in England, the technology by which they are available, and the patients who will be eligible to access to a test.

The National Genomic Test Directory will be updated on an annual basis and NHS England will implement a clear and transparent process, supported by a Clinical and Scientific Expert Panel, to determine which tests are available within the NHS. This will include reviewing any tests that may be retired or replaced by more modern technology, such as WGS. As the price of WGS falls and the clinical evidence improves, we envisage that it will be extended to more conditions and therefore more patients.

Grouped Questions: 270281 | 270282
Q
(Sheffield South East)
[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: 14 June 2019
Department of Health and Social Care
Genetics: Screening
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what estimate he has made of the number of patients that will benefit from whole genome sequencing in the first year of its introduction; and what steps is he taking to ensure the adequacy of trained professionals to provide that service.
A
Answered by: Caroline Dinenage
Answered on: 19 June 2019

As part of the NHS Long Term Plan, the National Health Service has committed to sequencing 500,000 whole genomes by 2023/24.

During 2019, the NHS will begin to offer whole genome sequencing (WGS) as part of clinical care for:

- Seriously ill children likely to have a rare genetic disorder;

- People with one of 21 rare conditions where current evidence supports early adoption of WGS as a diagnostic test;

- People with specific types of cancer for which there is likely to be the greatest patient benefit from using WGS – children with cancer, sarcoma and Acute Myeloid Leukaemia.

As the price of whole genome sequencing falls and the evidence improves, we envisage that it will be extended to more conditions and therefore more patients.

Q
(Sheffield South East)
[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: 13 June 2019
Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government
Local Government: Audit
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, what assessment he has made of the implications for his policies of the failure of EY to complete local authority audits within the required time limits.
A
Answered by: Rishi Sunak
Answered on: 18 June 2019

We are aware of this issue, affecting 19 local government bodies and, together with Public Sector Audit Appointments Ltd, are monitoring the situation. It is not acceptable for a professional services firm like EY to be unable to meet its contractual obligations to the statutory timetable and we expect the situation to be resolved as quickly as possible.

The forthcoming review of the local audit regime will consider the implications of our audit policy, including the timeliness of audit completion.

Q
(Sheffield South East)
[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: 13 June 2019
Department for Transport
Charter Flights: Licensing
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, pursuant to the Answer of 8 May 2019 to Question 249823, Civil Aviation Authority, what recent estimate he has made of the scale of unlawful passenger transport operations.
A
Answered by: Michael Ellis
Answered on: 18 June 2019

The CAA, as the independent safety regulator, has not made an estimate of the scale of unlawful passenger transport operations.

There are strict rules in place that require commercial air transport operations to be operated by the holder of an Air Operator Certificate (AOC) and an Operating Licence (OL). It is an offence to operate a commercial air transport flight without an AOC or OL.

Since 2016, the CAA’s investigations and enforcement team has received 21 allegations of illegal public transport. The CAA investigates such allegations and will prosecute people where there is sufficient evidence, and where it is in the public interest to do so. The CAA also conducts spot check visits to airfields and public events where aeroplane and helicopter operations take place, and where it finds evidence that a flight may have operated illegally it has the power to detain an aircraft and, where appropriate, take enforcement action.

Q
(Sheffield South East)
[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: 13 June 2019
Department for International Trade
BeoutQ
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for International Trade, pursuant to the Answer of 8 April to Question 239902 on Saudi Arabia: Sports, Question 239903 on BeoutQ and Question 239904 on BeoutQ , what steps the Saudi Arabian Government has agreed to take as a result of those representations.
A
Answered by: Graham Stuart
Answered on: 18 June 2019

HM Government Ministers and HM Ambassador in Riyadh continue to make representations on beoutQ and the Saudi Arabian Government has confirmed they are looking into the matter.

Q
(Sheffield South East)
[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: 13 June 2019
Department for Education
Academies: Private Finance Initiative
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what the current value is of PFI contracts for academy schools that are managed by local authorities; and how much Government funding is allocated to local authorities to undertake that work.
A
Answered by: Nick Gibb
Answered on: 18 June 2019

After a school undergoes conversion to an academy, it is no longer managed by local authorities. In the majority of cases, local authorities typically charge a fee to the schools and academies within a private finance initiative (PFI) contract in respect of local authority management of the PFI contract. The Department does not hold details on these fees. For further information, please contact the relevant local authority.

Q
(Sheffield South East)
[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: 14 May 2019
Department for Transport
East Midlands Rail Franchise: Rolling Stock
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, pursuant to the Answer of 23 April 2019 to Question 244025 and the Answer of 8 May 2019 249827 on East Midlands Rail Franchise: Rolling Stock , what assurances he has received from the train operator as to which type of diesel trains will replace the current fleet on Midland Main Line intercity services; and where those trains will be procured from.
A
Answered by: Andrew Jones
Answered on: 20 May 2019

Abellio’s bid contained assurances regarding the availability, capability and characteristics of the rolling stock that will be introduced on the Midland Mainline. With regard to the procurement of these trains, I refer the Honourable member to the answer given on 8 May [249827].

Q
(Sheffield South East)
[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: 14 May 2019
Department for Transport
Railways: Sheffield
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, pursuant to the Answer of 8 May 2019 to Question 249824 on Railways: Sheffield, which organisation holds the information requested.
A
Answered by: Andrew Jones
Answered on: 20 May 2019

Network Rail, who produce industry performance data, may hold the information requested.

Q
(Sheffield South East)
[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: 14 May 2019
Department for Transport
Railways: Sheffield
Commons
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, pursuant to the Answer of 8 May 2019 to Question 249824 on Railways: Sheffield, what information his Department holds on train punctuality.
A
Answered by: Andrew Jones
Answered on: 20 May 2019

The Department holds various punctuality reports relating to the main industry punctuality measures that have been used historically, the Public Performance Measure and Cancellations and Significant Lateness. This information is held at train operator level, and down to the level of groups of services run by an operator. We do not hold data for individual routes themselves.

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