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Gregory Barker: To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland what assessment has been carried out of the effectiveness of abolishing the Disabled Facilities Grant means test for children in Northern Ireland. 
Mr. Spellar: The abolition of the Disabled Facilities Grant (DFG) means-test for parents of children with disabilities came into effect from 16 February 2004. It is therefore too early for any assessment of effectiveness to be carried out. The working group which was set up to look at the matter considered the potential impact of the abolition in terms of cost to the Government and numbers who could be helped by the abolition. It was estimated that 2530 applications for DFG are withdrawn each year due to the high contribution.
Mr. Spellar: The exact number of people "living rough" is unknown. However, a survey early this year estimated that between 20 and 30 people who frequently use Housing Executive funded Outreach services could be regarded as "living rough". The survey did not, however, attempt to determine whether they were statutorily homeless or not. This is a very small percentage compared the number of households on the Housing Executive's waiting list registered as homeless which at 31 March 2004 stood at 5,287.
Lady Hermon: To ask the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland if he will make a statement on the status of the Safe Sports Grounds funding made available for essential health and safety work to stadia in Northern Ireland; and how much funding has been made available (a) in each of the past three years and (b) since January for this purpose. 
The Interim Safe Sports Grounds Scheme ended in March 2003 and the Sports Council for Northern Ireland is currently planning development of a new Sports Grounds Development Programme, the main purpose of which is to address the long-term health and safety deficiencies of major sports grounds in
13 May 2004 : Column 488W
Northern Ireland. Government funding made available for the health and safety work to Northern Ireland stadia in each of the last three financial years.
|Financial year||Amount made available|
Llew Smith: To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland how many farms in Scotland, comprising what land areas and in what locations, have restrictions applied to them in respect of land use as a result of the residual radioactivity from the Chernobyl nuclear accident. 
Mrs. McGuire: This is a devolved matter within the responsibility of the Scottish Executive, who are advised by the Food Standards Agency. However, the following table from the Food Standards Agency shows the number of farms in Scotland, their location and area of land covered by restrictions on the movement of sheep as a result of the residual radioactivity from the Chernobyl nuclear accident. There have been no restrictions on land use as a result of the Chernobyl accident.
|Number of Farms||14|
|Land Area (hectares)||16,300|
Llew Smith: To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland what discussions he has had with the Secretary of State for Transport in respect of the breach of the air exclusion zone around the Chapel Cross nuclear plant this year; and what steps have been taken to improve air security around the plant. 
|Fixed lines||Mobile telephones|
Ms Walley: To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland whether his Department plans to contribute financially to the establishment of the second phase of the Central Point of Expertise on Timber. 
Mrs. McGuire: I refer my hon. Friend to the answer given by my hon. Friend the Minister for Environment, Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, on 10 May 2004, Official Report, column 31W.
|Number of Officers assaulted|
Mr. Paul Marsden: To ask the Secretary of State for Transport (1) what research his Department has conducted into car-sharing schemes; and if he will place copies of such research findings in the Library; 
(2) what plans his Department has to provide guidance for local transport plans relating to car-sharing schemes. 
Mr. McNulty: Research into the effectiveness of car sharing and other travel plan measures was published in 2002 in "Making Travel Plans Work: Research Report", copies of which were placed in the Library.
Last year, the Department commissioned research into the influence of soft factors on travel demand. The final report, which will include a chapter on car sharing, is expected to be completed shortly and copies will be placed in the Libraries of the House.
Following a commitment made in the Government's Response to the Motorist's Forum Report on car sharing and car clubs on 3 December 2002, Official Report, column 72WS, the Department has commissioned research into best practice in setting up formal car sharing and car club schemes in closed communities. From the research, we will provide new guidance for local authorities, schools and employers on the effective implementation of car share schemes. The research and guidance is expected to be completed in October and copies will be placed in the Libraries of the House.
Mr. McNulty: There are high occupancy vehicle (HOV) lanes operating in two local authorities in England: two lengths of HOV lane in Leeds totalling 1.5 km and four lengths totalling 1.9 km in South Gloucester.
Mr. McNulty: The HOV lanes on Stanningley Road in Leeds are included as one of the case studies in the Bus Partnership Forum's Resource Pack "Bus PriorityThe Way Ahead" published by the Department in September 2003. This reports the results of an evaluation of the HOV lanes carried out by Leeds City Council.
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