Sir Gary Streeter Written Questions

36 Questions to Government Departments tabled by Sir Gary Streeter


Date Title Questioner
17 Jun 2020, 3:46 p.m. Local Enterprise Partnerships: South West Sir Gary Streeter

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, if he will recognise the four counties of Cornwall, Devon, Somerset and Dorset as the Great South West economic region, as recommended by the relevant local enterprise partnerships; and if he will make a statement.

Answer (Nadhim Zahawi)

The Government is committed to pan-regional partnerships, as part of our commitment to further devolution and level up the country. These non-statutory partnerships will need to operate at scale, driving greater levels of foreign investment into the UK, and capitalising on major economic opportunities over a pan-regional geography.

I am grateful to the Counties of Cornwall, Devon, Somerset, and Dorset for their proposals as presented in the Great South West prospectus and we will be setting out further detail through the Devolution White Paper.

16 Jun 2020, 5:44 p.m. A303: Dual Carriageways Sir Gary Streeter

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what progress he has made with plans to dual the A303 from the M3 to Taunton; and if he will make a statement.

Answer (Rachel Maclean)

Highway England’s delivery plan to be published later this year will contain details of the schemes which will contribute to provision of a high quality dual carriageway link between the London and the South East and the South West.

4 Feb 2019, 5:23 p.m. Hospices Sir Gary Streeter

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, what assessment he has made of the effect on the operation of hospices of the increase in employer pension contributions.

Answer (Caroline Dinenage)

The Department has made no assessment of the impact the increase in the NHS Pension Scheme employer contribution rate will have on hospice operations. It is for hospices as individual employers to oversee how they operate within the available budget.

In addition to the long-term funding settlement for the National Health Service, HM Treasury committed to providing extra funding to meet the costs of to the NHS arising from the ongoing actuarial valuation of the NHS Pension Scheme. Work is ongoing to ensure the additional cost to participating employers is appropriately funded. Discussions are underway with NHS England and NHS Improvement to determine the optimum method for distributing this funding to NHS commissioners and service providers. Arrangements will be confirmed in due course.

9 Jan 2019, 3 p.m. Nurses Sir Gary Streeter

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Health and Social Care, whether his Department has commissioned or undertaken external workforce modelling for nursing.

Answer (Stephen Hammond)

The Department works closely with Health Education England (HEE), the organisation that has responsibility for workforce planning, to understand the nursing workforce supply and demand by using analytical modelling techniques. In developing their workforce plans, HEE engages with a range of stakeholders including professional bodies and sustainability and transformation partnership.

24 Jul 2018, 1:07 p.m. EU Countries: Boats Sir Gary Streeter

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what steps his Department is taking to ensure that recreational boaters whose craft have Union Goods status retain that status after the UK leaves the EU.

Answer (Richard Harrington)

Craft used by recreational boaters are currently regulated by the EU Directive on recreational craft and personal watercraft. In the White Paper published on 12th July, the Government set out its ambition for a future economic partnership with the EU, which includes a proposal for a UK-EU free trade area underpinned by a common rulebook on industrial goods. This would cover those rules necessary to provide for frictionless trade at the border and would be supported by arrangements covering all relevant compliance activity necessary for products to be sold in the UK and EU markets. Our proposal would allow UK goods, including recreational craft, to move freely between the UK and EU markets. We must all now move at pace to negotiate our proposal to deliver the prosperous and secure future all our citizens deserve.

3 Jul 2018, 3:27 p.m. Transforming Cities Fund Sir Gary Streeter

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, when the bidding process for Transforming Cities funding (a) started and (b) is planned to conclude; and when a decision is due on which cities have been successful in their bids.

Answer (Joseph Johnson)

The Transforming Cities Fund Call for Proposals process launched on 13 March 2018 and bidding closed on Friday 8 June. The Department is currently considering the proposals received and cities will be notified if they are successful when the assessment is complete.

26 Apr 2018, 3:41 p.m. Rent to Buy Scheme Sir Gary Streeter

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, what steps he is taking to promote the Rent to Buy scheme as a route into home ownership; and if he will make a statement.

Answer (Mrs Heather Wheeler)

The Government is determined to extend the opportunity of home ownership to hard working families who aspire to home ownership but may be otherwise unable to afford it. We are investing over £9 billion in affordable homes, including Rent to Buy, through the Affordable Homes Programme 2016-21. The programme is flexible and sets no ringfences on particular forms of tenure, so providers can bid into the programme to develop a wide range of homes to meet the housing needs of a range of people in different circumstances and housing markets.

23 Apr 2018, 1:16 p.m. Devonport Dockyard: Pensions Sir Gary Streeter

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, when she plans to complete the bulk pension transfer of employees working in Devonport Dockyard; and if she will make a statement.

Answer (Guy Opperman)

The Government has no such plans as it is not the sponsor of the scheme for employees of the Devonport dockyard. The arrangements for transferring employees’ pensions is a matter for the employer and the trustees of the scheme.

5 Apr 2018, 4:39 p.m. Nurses: Training Sir Gary Streeter

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, which universities have been affected by overpayments of student loans and maintenance grants to nursing students by the Student Loans Company.

Answer (Mr Sam Gyimah)

The following Higher Education Institutions have at least one nursing student who has received an overpayment of grant and/or maintenance loan in the academic year 2017/18.

Brunel University London

Cardiff University

Glyndwr University

Plymouth Marjon University

University of Brighton

University of Manchester

University of Southampton

University of Suffolk

University of West London

Leeds University

University of Essex

University of Bedfordshire

University of Worcester

Anglia Ruskin University

London Metropolitan University

University of Central Lancashire

University of Derby

University of Portsmouth

University of Reading

University of Salford

5 Apr 2018, 4:24 p.m. Insolvency: EU Law Sir Gary Streeter

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what plans the Government has to introduce a legal framework after the UK has left the EU that will ensure UK restructuring and insolvency practitioners will be able to practice across the EU.

Answer (Andrew Griffiths)

The exact future relationship between the EU and UK on civil judicial cooperation, including the recognition of insolvency and restructuring procedures, judgments and Insolvency Practitioner qualifications is subject to negotiations with our EU partners. It is in the interests of the UK and the EU that there continues to be an effective, and fit for purpose, framework for resolving cross-border legal disputes. The Government has made clear that an effective framework of civil judicial cooperation is an important part of the deep and special partnership we want to establish with the EU.

5 Apr 2018, 10:57 a.m. Nurses: Training Sir Gary Streeter

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what estimate his Department has made of the number of nursing students who were overpaid loans and maintenance grants by the Students Loans Company.

Answer (Mr Sam Gyimah)

We are aware of 804 NHS funded students who may have been overpaid maintenance loans and/or grants in the academic year 2017/18.

None of the students affected should suffer hardship as a result of the error, and students affected should contact the Student Loans Company.

29 Mar 2018, 1:45 p.m. Nurses: Training Sir Gary Streeter

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what steps his Department is taking to support nursing students who were overpaid loan and maintenance grants by the Student Loans Company.

Answer (Mr Sam Gyimah)

Our priority is to support those affected by the maintenance loan and grant overpayments. None of the students affected should suffer hardship as a result of the error, and students affected should contact the Student Loans Company.

29 Mar 2018, 1:45 p.m. Nurses: Training Sir Gary Streeter

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, if he will make it his policy to write-off all the loan and maintenance grants overpayments made by the Student Loans Company to nursing students.

Answer (Mr Sam Gyimah)

Our priority is to support those affected by the maintenance loan and grant overpayments. None of the students affected should suffer hardship as a result of the error, and students affected should contact the Student Loans Company.

29 Mar 2018, 1:45 p.m. Nurses: Training Sir Gary Streeter

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what support he plans to make available to nursing students affected by overpayments of loan and maintenance grants by the Students Loans Company to ensure they can complete their course.

Answer (Mr Sam Gyimah)

Our priority is to support those affected by the maintenance loan and grant overpayments. None of the students affected should suffer hardship as a result of the error, and students affected should contact the Student Loans Company.

22 Mar 2018, 4:17 p.m. Bus Services: Veterans Sir Gary Streeter

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, if the Government will make an assessment of the potential merits of introducing a free bus pass scheme for armed forces veterans across the UK similar to the Veterans Concessionary Travel Scheme operating in London.

Answer (Ms Nusrat Ghani)

The Veterans’ Oyster Photocard scheme in London is not part of the English National Concessionary Travel Scheme, but is provided by Transport for London (TfL) and funded by the Mayor as a discretionary enhancement. Concessionary travel is devolved in other administrations.

There are no plans at present to introduce a statutory national bus travel concession for armed forces veterans across the UK, however, all local authorities in England have the powers to introduce concessions in addition to their statutory obligations, as TfL have done.

25 Jan 2018, 5:28 p.m. Apprentices: Taxation Sir Gary Streeter

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what assessment he has made of the effect of the apprenticeship levy on schools in (a) Devon and Plymouth and (b) England; and if he will make a statement.

Answer (Anne Milton)

As with other areas of the public sector, the department will be monitoring the uptake of apprenticeships by the school workforce. Public sector bodies included in the apprenticeship target are required to annually publish and report to the department their progress towards the target. The first reports (covering the period 1 April 2017 – 31 March 2018) are due on 30 September 2018. As we have outlined to the Public Accounts Committee, the department will also include the financial impact of the apprenticeship levy as part of our publication regarding the cost pressures on schools.

25 Jan 2018, 12:28 p.m. Mayflower: Anniversaries Sir Gary Streeter

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what steps he is taking to appoint a special representative for the Mayflower 400 celebrations in 2020; and if he will make a statement.

Answer (Michael Ellis)

The Prime Minister established the post of Special Envoy for the Mayflower commemorations in the Spring Budget of 2017 and invited Oliver Colvile to take up the position. Following the 2017 General Election, the Prime Minister invited Mr Colvile to continue in the role, which he accepted.

25 Jan 2018, 11:01 a.m. Cycling and Walking: South West Sir Gary Streeter

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, how much his Department has allocated to (a) Plymouth and (b) Devon for projects relating to his Department's cycling and walking investment strategy in the financial year 2017-18.

Answer (Jesse Norman)

The Cycling and Walking Investment Strategy identified £1.2 billion that may be invested in cycling and walking between 2016/17 to 2020/21. Many of the decisions on the allocation of these funds will be made by the relevant local body in line with the Government’s devolution and localism agenda.

The tables below provide a guide to the funding allocated in 2017/18 to Plymouth and Devon identified in the Cycling and Walking Investment Strategy.

Plymouth City Council

Funding programme

£m

Access Fund

0.499

Integrated Transport Block*

0.291

Bikeability (national cycling training)

0.142

Total

0.932

Devon County Council

Funding programme

£m

Access Fund

0.5

Integrated Transport Block*

0.540

Bikeability (national cycling training)

0.280

Total

1.32

The Department is also providing technical support to Plymouth City Council to assist with the development of their Local Cycling and Walking Infrastructure Plan. The level of support has yet to be determined. The Heart of the South West Local Enterprise Partnership has allocated £18.330m to cycling and walking projects between 2016/17 and 2020/21.**

*This is based on a survey of Local Transport Authorities published by the Department in February 2016 revealed that 11% of this fund supports cycling schemes and 4% supports streetscape and Rights of Way schemes.

** This is based on self-reported data received from the Local Enterprise Partnership.

23 Jan 2018, 3:16 p.m. Railways: South West Sir Gary Streeter

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, how much his Department and Network Rail plan to spend on the Paddington to Penzance rail link in Control Period 6.

Answer (Joseph Johnson)

Network Rail are preparing Strategic Business Plans for Control Period 6 (CP6) as part of their regulated Periodic Review process, expected to be concluded in October 2018. This will determine the level of investment in operations, maintenance and renewals for each route across the network, including the Western Route, which contains the line from Paddington to Penzance.

23 Jan 2018, 3:13 p.m. Railways: South West Sir Gary Streeter

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, when he plans to respond to the Peninsula Rail Task Force rail improvement plan published in 2016.

Answer (Joseph Johnson)

We will continue to engage with the Peninsula Rail Task Force (PRTF) and other interested parties as the planning for Network Rail’s work programme for the period starting in April 2019 and the development of the specifications for the future Great Western and Cross Country franchises unfold.

The work of the Peninsula Rail Task Force continues to be a valuable part of the process for defining our priorities for investment after 2019.

New enhancements will be taken forward through a new process in the form of a pipeline, designed to ensure investment best addresses the needs of passengers and freight, and that funding commitments appropriately reflect the stage of development of enhancements.

23 Jan 2018, 3:10 p.m. Railways Sir Gary Streeter

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what discussions he has had with Network Rail on the Speed to the West initiative in the last three months; and what the outcomes of those discussions has been.

Answer (Joseph Johnson)

The Secretary of State regularly meets with stakeholders from across the rail industry, including Network Rail. Such discussions may include reference to rail services in the South West.

Officials from the Department for Transport have met with Network Rail to discuss how the findings of the Speed to the West study might be considered as part of the planning process for Control Period 6 (2019 – 2024).

23 Jan 2018, 1:37 p.m. Coastal Areas: South West Sir Gary Streeter

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, how much funding his Department has allocated to projects in (a) Plymouth and (b) South West Devon constituency from the Coastal Communities Fund in each year for which information is available.

Answer (Jake Berry)

Plymouth has received Coastal Community Fund grants worth £2.67 million for two projects since 2013: £670,000 in 2013 for the regeneration of Plymouth’s waterfront; and £2 million in 2017 for create new and refurbish existing cultural and heritage venues in Plymouth.

Funding is determined through a competitive bid-led process based on demonstrating the strongest fit with the programme's outcomes and criteria.

The next bidding round is due to open shortly and will give all coastal communities another opportunity to bid for funds.

22 Jan 2018, 4:51 p.m. Coastal Areas: Plymouth Sir Gary Streeter

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government, if he will take steps to ensure that coastal areas in and around Plymouth receive an equitable share of funding from the Coastal Communities Fund.

Answer (Jake Berry)

Plymouth has received Coastal Communities Fund grants worth £2.67 million for two projects since 2013: £670,000 in 2013 for the regeneration of Plymouth’s waterfront; and £2 million in 2017 to create new and refurbish existing cultural and heritage venues in the city.

I announced on 4 September last year that Coastal Communities Fund Round 5 will open for applications early this year with at least £40 million of funding available.

Hon Members with coastal constituencies should encourage prospective applicants to make an early start in developing their plans for revitalising their local communities.

16 Jan 2018, 1:51 p.m. Sea Bass: Regulation Sir Gary Streeter

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what assessment he has made of the effectiveness of the (a) Marine Maritime Organisation and (b) Association of Inshore Fisheries and Conservation Association to enforce compliance of fishing regulations in relation to sea bass fishing by commercial netters.

Answer (George Eustice)

There are eleven ongoing formal MMO investigations into bass related infringements. Some IFCAs are also currently undertaking work to introduce netting restriction byelaws in their Districts, intended to protect a wide variety of marine resources including juvenile fish, which will include bass.

12 Dec 2017, 1:59 p.m. Railways: South West Sir Gary Streeter

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what progress has been made on considering the Speed to the West request of the Peninsula Rail Task Force.

Answer (Paul Maynard)

The request from the Peninsula Rail Task Force for additional funding of £600,000 for the “Speed to the West” project represents the first stage in developing a new enhancement scheme to supplement a planned track renewal within the current funding Control Period to 2019 (CP5). The new enhancement scheme is estimated to cost an additional £20-30m to deliver and is currently unfunded.

We have set aside significant funding for the development of new railway schemes in next Control Period 6 (2019 to 2024) and such schemes will need to be considered through the new process for enhancements as part of the Rail Upgrade Plan. We will announce more details about this in due course.

21 Nov 2017, 12:55 p.m. Railways: South West Sir Gary Streeter

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what assessment he has made of the merits of the request from the Peninsula Rail Task Force for funding of £600,000 for the Speed to the West study; and if he will make a statement.

Answer (Paul Maynard)

The request from the Peninsula Rail Task Force for additional funding of £600,000 for the “Speed to the West” project represents the first stage in developing a new enhancement scheme to supplement a planned renewal within the current Control Period (CP5). It is estimated to cost an additional £20-30m to deliver, which is currently unfunded.

The enhancement project would raise line speeds from 60 to 75mph for 14 miles between Plymouth and Totnes. This would generate estimated time savings of up to 3 mins 8 secs towards London and up to 2 mins 24 secs towards Penzance.

27 Oct 2017, 11:46 a.m. Housing: Solar Power Sir Gary Streeter

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, if he will take steps to ensure that solar panels form part of the infrastructure for all new buildings.

Answer (Alok Sharma)

Regulations and planning reforms encourage the use of renewables without mandating any particular technology. Mandating a particular renewable technology, such as solar panels, may not be appropriate for all building types in all areas. Building regulations are deliberately couched in performance terms, allowing builders, local councils and architects the flexibility to select from a range of renewable energy technologies to suit the potentially unique circumstances of a particular development.

24 Oct 2017, 10:36 a.m. Junior Doctors: Training Sir Gary Streeter

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Health, what estimate his Department has made of the cost to the public purse of a junior doctor's training.

Answer (Philip Dunne)

The Personal Social Services Research Unit at the University of Kent estimates within their report ‘Unit Costs of Health and Social Care 2016’, published December 2016, that the average cost in 2015/16 of training a junior doctor up to specialty registrar is £383,563. This figure is the total cost of training including costs to the public purse and the individual.

12 Oct 2017, 12:10 p.m. Railways: South West Sir Gary Streeter

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what steps his Department is taking to increase mobile telephone coverage alongside inter-city rail networks throughout the South West to improve on-board connectivity.

Answer (Paul Maynard)

In December 2016 my Department introduced a requirement that future rail franchises have better mobile connectivity for passengers. This significantly increases the number of places along the railway line where there is signal. There are three railway franchises in the South West. For Great Western and Cross Country Franchises these requirements will come into effect in 2019 and must be implemented no later than 2022. The procurement of the South Western Franchise started prior to the requirement in December 2016, but they have agreed to voluntarily adopt this approach.

My Department is working closely with the Department of Digital, Culture Media and Sport (DCMS) to see what further improvements can be made to mobile connectivity on trains.

11 Sep 2017, 3:59 p.m. Railways: South West Sir Gary Streeter

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, when the Government intends to respond formally to the Peninsula Rail Task Force rail improvement plan submitted in 2016.

Answer (Paul Maynard)

The Government does not propose to publish a formal response to the Peninsula Rail Task Force (PRTF) report at the present time as we continue to engage with the PRTF and other interested parties as the planning for Network Rail’s work programme for the period starting in April 2019 and the development of the specifications for the future Great Western and Cross Country franchises unfold.

11 Sep 2017, 3:59 p.m. Railways: South West Sir Gary Streeter

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, whether the Government plans to publish a response to the Peninsula Rail Task Force rail improvement plan submitted in 2016.

Answer (Paul Maynard)

The Government does not propose to publish a formal response to the Peninsula Rail Task Force (PRTF) report at the present time as we continue to engage with the PRTF and other interested parties as the planning for Network Rail’s work programme for the period starting in April 2019 and the development of the specifications for the future Great Western and Cross Country franchises unfold.

7 Sep 2017, 3:50 p.m. Annuities: Health Sir Gary Streeter

Question

To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer, what plans he has to alter the criteria for claiming an enhanced annuity on the grounds of ill health.

Answer (Steve Barclay)

The criteria for enhanced annuities on the grounds of ill health are set by individual pension providers in the terms and conditions of individual policies. Consumers should check with pension providers whether they are eligible for an enhanced annuity. As the Financial Conduct Authority’s recently published Retirement Outcomes Review interim report noted, over 90% of all enhanced annuities are purchased on the open market and consumers should shop around for the best possible deal.

7 Sep 2017, 3:50 p.m. Annuities Sir Gary Streeter

Question

To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer, what plans he has to make changes to the criteria for enhanced annuity on the grounds of ill health.

Answer (Steve Barclay)

The criteria for enhanced annuities on the grounds of ill health are set by individual pension providers in the terms and conditions of individual policies. Consumers should check with pension providers whether they are eligible for an enhanced annuity. As the Financial Conduct Authority’s recently published Retirement Outcomes Review interim report noted, over 90% of all enhanced annuities are purchased on the open market and consumers should shop around for the best possible deal.

19 Jul 2017, 2:31 p.m. Housing Sir Gary Streeter

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, when he plans to respond to representations received for the consultation on the housing white paper which closed on 2 May 2017.

Answer (Alok Sharma)

Responses to the White Paper Fixing Our Broken Housing Market are being analysed at present. The Government intends to issue a response in due course.

10 Jul 2017, 3:15 p.m. Devolution: South West Sir Gary Streeter

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, what progress has been made on devolution for Devon and Somerset.

Answer (Jake Berry)

The Government is committed to working with places to generate growth and jobs. This is not a one-size-fits-all process; for example, mayoral governance may be appropriate for cities but not rural counties. We will continue to work with Devon and Somerset to ensure they have the tools to drive growth.

4 Jul 2017, 4:45 p.m. Affordable Housing Sir Gary Streeter

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government, what steps his Department is taking to ensure that rent-to-buy products are within the definition of affordable housing for the purposes of local authority section 106 agreements.

Answer (Alok Sharma)

Our White paper Fixing the Broken Housing Market, published in February, made clear that Rent to Buy products can help to meet affordable housing needs. We intend to reflect this in an updated definition of affordable housing for planning purposes when the National Planning Policy Framework is reviewed. We are also investing £7.1 billion in the Affordable Homes Programme to deliver 225,000 affordable housing starts by March 2021, including Rent to Buy homes.