Luke Graham Portrait

Luke Graham

Conservative - Former Member for Ochil and South Perthshire

Luke Graham is not a member of any APPGs
4 Former APPG memberships
China, Fair Business Banking, Fair Business Banking and Finance, Thalidomide
Finance Committee (Commons)
5th Mar 2018 - 6th Nov 2019
Public Accounts Committee
11th Sep 2017 - 22nd Oct 2018


Division Voting information

Luke Graham has voted in 487 divisions, and 10 times against the majority of their Party.

4 Sep 2019 - European Union (Withdrawal) (No. 6) Bill - View Vote Context
Luke Graham voted Aye - against a party majority and against the House
One of 57 Conservative Aye votes vs 180 Conservative No votes
Tally: Ayes - 65 Noes - 495
9 Jul 2019 - Northern Ireland (Executive Formation) Bill - View Vote Context
Luke Graham voted Aye - against a party majority and in line with the House
One of 72 Conservative Aye votes vs 84 Conservative No votes
Tally: Ayes - 332 Noes - 99
1 Apr 2019 - EU: Withdrawal and Future Relationship (Votes) - View Vote Context
Luke Graham voted Aye - against a party majority and against the House
One of 36 Conservative Aye votes vs 236 Conservative No votes
Tally: Ayes - 273 Noes - 276
27 Mar 2019 - EU: Withdrawal and Future Relationship Votes - View Vote Context
Luke Graham voted No - against a party majority and in line with the House
One of 94 Conservative No votes vs 157 Conservative Aye votes
Tally: Ayes - 160 Noes - 400
27 Mar 2019 - EU: Withdrawal and Future Relationship Votes - View Vote Context
Luke Graham voted Aye - against a party majority and against the House
One of 59 Conservative Aye votes vs 200 Conservative No votes
Tally: Ayes - 65 Noes - 377
14 Mar 2019 - UK’s Withdrawal from the European Union - View Vote Context
Luke Graham voted Aye - against a party majority and in line with the House
One of 112 Conservative Aye votes vs 188 Conservative No votes
Tally: Ayes - 412 Noes - 202
24 Oct 2018 - Northern Ireland (Executive Formation and Exercise of Functions) Bill - View Vote Context
Luke Graham voted Aye - against a party majority and in line with the House
One of 45 Conservative Aye votes vs 102 Conservative No votes
Tally: Ayes - 207 Noes - 117
31 Jan 2018 - Restoration and Renewal (Report of the Joint Committee) - View Vote Context
Luke Graham voted Aye - against a party majority and in line with the House
One of 66 Conservative Aye votes vs 164 Conservative No votes
Tally: Ayes - 236 Noes - 220
31 Jan 2018 - Restoration and Renewal (Report of the Joint Committee) - View Vote Context
Luke Graham voted Aye - against a party majority and in line with the House
One of 68 Conservative Aye votes vs 166 Conservative No votes
Tally: Ayes - 234 Noes - 185
23 Jan 2018 - Electoral Commission - View Vote Context
Luke Graham voted Aye - against a party majority and against the House
One of 32 Conservative Aye votes vs 40 Conservative No votes
Tally: Ayes - 46 Noes - 77
View All Luke Graham Division Votes

All Debates

Speeches made during Parliamentary debates are recorded in Hansard. For ease of browsing we have grouped debates into individual, departmental and legislative categories.

Sparring Partners
Peter Grant (Scottish National Party)
Shadow SNP Deputy Spokesperson (Treasury - Chief Secretary)
(33 debate interactions)
Stephen Kerr (Conservative)
(27 debate interactions)
Alison Thewliss (Scottish National Party)
Shadow SNP Spokesperson (Treasury)
(25 debate interactions)
View All Sparring Partners
Department Debates
HM Treasury
(146 debate contributions)
Cabinet Office
(110 debate contributions)
Department for Work and Pensions
(49 debate contributions)
View All Department Debates
View all Luke Graham's debates

Latest EDMs signed by Luke Graham

23rd April 2019
Luke Graham signed this EDM on Monday 7th October 2019

PROVIDING FINANCIAL RESTITUTION TO 1950s WOMEN

Tabled by: Anna McMorrin (Labour - Cardiff North)
That this House welcomes the positive interventions from many hon. Members from across the House on behalf of women born in the 1950s who have lost their pensions; welcomes the equalisation of retirement ages between women and men; recalls that women born in the 1950s were subject to discriminatory employment …
225 signatures
(Most recent: 8 Oct 2019)
Signatures by party:
Labour: 133
Scottish National Party: 24
Conservative: 24
Liberal Democrat: 15
Independent: 10
Democratic Unionist Party: 10
Plaid Cymru: 3
Non-affiliated: 3
Crossbench: 2
The Independent Group for Change: 2
Green Party: 1
10th December 2018
Luke Graham signed this EDM as a sponsor on Monday 10th December 2018

APPOINTMENT OF CATRIONA MACINNES AS EDITOR OF THE COURIER

Tabled by: Stephen Gethins (Scottish National Party - North East Fife)
That this House congratulates the new editor of The Courier, Catriona MacInnes, on her appointment following a successful year of running the award-winning regional daily newspaper covering Tayside and Fife as Acting Editor; notes that she is the only female editor of a daily newspaper in Scotland; believes that this …
14 signatures
(Most recent: 11 Jan 2019)
Signatures by party:
Scottish National Party: 11
Conservative: 2
Democratic Unionist Party: 1
View All Luke Graham's signed Early Day Motions

Commons initiatives

These initiatives were driven by Luke Graham, and are more likely to reflect personal policy preferences.

MPs who are act as Ministers or Shadow Ministers are generally restricted from performing Commons initiatives other than Urgent Questions.


Luke Graham has not been granted any Urgent Questions

2 Adjournment Debates led by Luke Graham

Wednesday 30th October 2019
Monday 4th June 2018

1 Bill introduced by Luke Graham


A Bill to require banks to provide certain services in rural areas and small communities; to make provision for access to Post Office services in such areas and communities; and for connected purposes.


Last Event - 1st Reading: House Of Commons
Wednesday 31st October 2018
(Read Debate)

Luke Graham has not co-sponsored any Bills in the current parliamentary sitting


63 Written Questions

(View all written questions)
Written Questions can be tabled by MPs and Lords to request specific information information on the work, policy and activities of a Government Department
31st Oct 2019
To ask the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster and Minister for the Cabinet Office, whether his (a) Department and (b) the Electoral Commission has made an estimate of the cost of holding a referendum on Scottish independence in 2020.

Scotland had an independence referendum in 2014. It was legal, fair and decisive and people in Scotland voted by a significant margin to remain part of the UK. The UK Government is committed to upholding and respecting the result of the 2014 referendum. The Scottish Government has stated that the cost of running the 2014 referendum was £15.8 million.

Chloe Smith
Minister of State (Department for Work and Pensions)
23rd May 2018
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, what recent discussions his Department has had with the Scottish Government on working practices of the civil service in Scotland.

The Civil Service HR team within Cabinet Office regularly engages with its counterparts in the Scottish Government on a range of workforce matters where there are shared interests and to share best practice. This also ensures consistency in approach and ways of working (as appropriate) across both bodies.

All UK Government civil servants are expected to adhere to the principles set out in the Civil Service Code throughout their working practices. Civil servants working for the Scottish Government, and their agencies, have their own versions of the code, as do the Welsh Government. However, both the Scottish and Home Civil Service adhere to the same core values: integrity, honesty, objectivity and impartiality.

Oliver Dowden
Minister without Portfolio (Cabinet Office)
13th Nov 2017
To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, what steps he has taken to locate Government Departments (a) outside London and (b) in Scotland after the UK leaves the EU.

Workforce planning is primarily the responsibility of each Government department. However, the Government’s Industrial Strategy will help create a more balanced economy by moving Arm’s Length public bodies out of London and the surrounding area and into clusters in the regions and devolved nations of the UK.

To ask the Minister for the Cabinet Office, what recent discussions his Department has had with the Scottish Government on working practices of the civil service in Scotland.

The Civil Service HR team within Cabinet Office regularly engages with its counterparts in the Scottish Government on a range of workforce matters where there are shared interests and to share best practice. This also ensures consistency in approach and ways of working (as appropriate) across both bodies.

All UK Government civil servants are expected to adhere to the principles set out in the Civil Service Code throughout their working practices. Civil servants working for the Scottish Government, and their agencies, have their own versions of the code, as do the Welsh Government. However, both the Scottish and Home Civil Service adhere to the same core values: integrity, honesty, objectivity and impartiality.

Oliver Dowden
Minister without Portfolio (Cabinet Office)
9th Apr 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, how much funding the Government has allocated to offshore wind in Scotland since 2010.

Offshore wind is supported under the Renewables Obligation (RO) and Contracts for Difference (CfD). The RO was available to all eligible generators[1]. Since 2015 onwards, support has been awarded on a competitive basis using Contracts for Difference (CfD). The offshore wind capacity brought forward in Scottish waters through RO and CfD since 2010 is approximately 2.3 GW[2].

The costs of these schemes are paid for through consumers’ energy bills and managed by Ofgem and the Low Carbon Contracts Company. From 2010 to 2017/18, the last financial year for which spend figures are available, there has been £355.6 million of spending under the RO on offshore wind in Scotland. No CfD payments were made in respect of offshore wind generation in Scotland during the same period.

Innovation has been key in bringing down the costs of offshore wind. The work of the Offshore Renewable Energy (ORE) Catapult, based in Glasgow and Levenmouth, has been, and will continue to be, important, in this. For example in June 2018 the ORE Catapult announced a £1.3 million programme of technology innovation projects designed to advance Scotland’s offshore wind sector[i]. In 2018, the Government also announced a further £73.5 million, five-year funding plan for the ORE Catapult.

[1] The RO closed to new capacity on 31 March 2017 (with exceptions that extended the deadline to 31 March 2018 for certain offshore wind stations). Accredited capacity will receive support for 20 years or until the final closure of the scheme on 31 March 2037, whichever is the earlier.

[2] CfDs awarded for 2,062 MW; under RO total installed at the end of 2017/18 was 218.5 MW.

[i] https://ore.catapult.org.uk/press-releases/innovation-funding-boost-scottish-offshore-wind/

9th Jan 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what steps his Department (a) has taken and (b) plans to take to promote tidal power schemes since the decision was taken not to fund the Swansea Bay Tidal Lagoon project.

The Department has had regular engagement with Parliamentary colleagues and industry to discuss energy policy matters, including on tidal energy.

Since 2003 the Government has made £174m innovation and grant funding available to wave, tidal stream technologies (£80m of that since 2010). As set out in the Clean Growth Strategy, wave, tidal stream and tidal range technologies could have a role in the long-term decarbonisation of the UK, but they will need to demonstrate how they can compete with other forms of generation.

23rd May 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what steps his Department is taking to promote entrepreneurship and start-ups by means of the Government's Industrial Strategy.

Our Industrial Strategy sets out our aim to make Britain the best place in the world to start and grow a business.

We are ranked top 10 in the world for doing business by the World Economic Forum and World Bank and amongst the very best in Europe. But as the Patient Capital Review identified, we could do better in the longer-term process of building up successful businesses to reach large-scale and as the Scale-Up Taskforce has highlighted, more can be done to increase the number of businesses that achieve their full potential.

So as part of the Industrial Strategy, we have an action plan to unlock over £20bn of investment in high potential businesses, including through establishing a new £2.5bn Patient Capital investment fund incubated within the Government owned British Business Bank (BBB). The BBB, through its Start Up Loans programme, has lent over £410m to more than 55,000 entrepreneurs across the UK to start their own businesses. The New Enterprise Allowance Scheme from the Department of Work and Pensions also provides money and support to help people receiving certain benefits to start their own business.

Through the Industrial Strategy we are continuing to invest in 38 Growth Hubs across England alongside the Business Support Helpline. Business support is devolved to Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. All businesses can access core services, information and guidance on starting up and running a business, as well as their statutory rights and obligations, on GOV.UK.

More widely, the Small Business Commissioner has been launched with the purpose to assist small businesses to prevent and resolve late payment issues with their larger business customers. And we are opening up public procurement to SMEs, with a commitment to one pound in every three of central government procurement spend going to SMEs by (directly or via the supply chain) 2022.

We will also drive change through the biggest increase in public investment in R&D in our history, raising total R&D investment to 2.4% of GDP by 2027. Finally, we will support businesses to access international markets. This means driving up exports by the Government and private sector including identifying smaller businesses with the potential to succeed and grow as exporters.

14th May 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what his Department's policy is on the inclusion of support for the aerospace sector in the Tay Cities Deal.

Government is working with the Tay Cities region to fulfil the commitment we made in the 2016 Budget to agree a City Deal with the local area. In line with the national Industrial Strategy, we are keen that City Deals build on local strengths and support key sectors, and the UK Government will consider supporting any local proposals in our reserved policy space that support these aims. All proposals will need to have the support of key stakeholders and will need to show that they use public money effectively to drive growth and productivity.

21st Mar 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy, what plans his Department has to promote the space sector in Scotland.

The Department works closely with the Scottish authorities to promote the space sector in Scotland. Space companies and organisations in Scotland directly employed some 7,000 people in 2014/15, 18% of the UK’s total employees in space. In February 2018, the UK Space Agency, working with the European Space Agency, announced over £4m in investment in Spire Global to develop cutting-edge small satellite technology in Glasgow. The Space Industry Act 2018 has also received royal assent, which will boost plans to develop new space launch services in Scotland.

The UK Space Agency is also co-funding the Satellite Applications Catapult’s Scottish Centre of Excellence, which has a Scotland-wide remit to promote opportunities for increased awareness and uptake of Satellite Applications, broker partnerships and identify funding opportunities. It has also supported Space start-ups in the Tontine business incubator in Glasgow. In addition, the UK Space Agency’s Space for Smarter Government Programme is providing a training programme for Scottish Public sector organisations to help them to understand how space services can be used to deliver more efficient public services.

19th Apr 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, how many mobile phone masts there are in Ochil and South Perthshire constituency.

I refer the hon member to the answer to written question 133562 answered on 28th March.

28th Mar 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what his Department's timescale is for eliminating mobile phone not-spots on motorways.

The action taken by mobile operators as a result of the 2014 agreement with Government, has helped to improve coverage on the UK's roads. We recognise that there is further to go, which is why the Government has a Manifesto commitment to deliver full and uninterrupted mobile phone signal on all major roads by 2022.

28th Mar 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what his Department's timescale is for eliminating mobile phone not-spots on A and B roads in Scotland.

The action taken by mobile operators as a result of the 2014 agreement with Government, has helped to improve coverage on the UK's roads. We recognise that there is further to go, which is why the Government has a Manifesto commitment to deliver full and uninterrupted mobile phone signal on all major roads by 2022.

20th Mar 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what estimate his Department has made of the number of mobile phone masts in Ochil and South Perthshire constituency.

We have made no such estimate.

16th Mar 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, when his Department plans next to meet (a) Perth and Kinross and (b) Clackmannanshire Council to discuss the (i) roll-out of superfast broadband and (ii) mobile phone coverage in those council areas.

The delivery of BDUK’s Superfast Programme in the areas of Perth, Kinross and Clackmannanshire is managed by the local delivery partner, Digital Scotland. The Department has several meetings scheduled with this project to discuss further Superfast roll-out across Scotland. Currently, there are no meetings scheduled between the Department and those councils in regards to Superfast roll-out.

While there are no meetings scheduled with either council to discuss mobile coverage we remain committed to our ambition for the UK to have good quality connectivity where people live, work and travel. This is why we reformed the Electronic Communications Code in 2017, making it easier and cheaper to install digital infrastructure across the UK including Scotland. We also welcome Ofcom’s consultation, launched on 9 March, which outlines potential new licence obligations for rural coverage as part of the upcoming 700MHz spectrum auction. This will further help drive coverage improvements for consumers.

7th Sep 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport, what steps she is taking to improve broadband speeds in rural areas.

Superfast Broadband is now available to nearly 94% of premises in the UK and is on track to reach 95% by the end of 2017 and we recently announced £645M funding to take this further. By 2020, we will ensure universal broadband access to at least 10Mbps, so that no home or business is left behind.

The Local Full Fibre Networks programme will be available across the UK, including in rural areas. Funding from the programme is likely to deliver fibre installations in areas where the current cost of delivering fibre is not commercially viable.

8th Apr 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural affairs, what plans he has for the (a) disposal and (b) refurbishment of electric car batteries.

Electric car batteries are classified as industrial batteries and covered under the Waste Batteries and Accumulators Regulations 2009. This bans the disposal to landfill of such batteries and their incineration. It also establishes take-back and recycling obligations for industrial battery producers.

The UK’s £246 million Faraday Battery Challenge is playing a leading role in promoting the reuse and recycling of battery components. One of the eight technical challenges set is to be able to recycle 95% of an electric vehicle battery pack by 2035.

A number of live projects are exploring this area including a £10 million Faraday Institution research project. This is developing the technological, economic and policy framework that would allow high percentages of the materials in lithium-ion batteries at the end of their first life to be reused or recycled. In addition, several collaborative research and development projects are looking at reusing, remanufacturing or recycling end-of-life, automotive lithium-ion batteries.

Thérèse Coffey
Secretary of State for Work and Pensions
23rd May 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, whether his Department has received representations since April 24th 2018 from the Scottish Government on the creation of common frameworks for agriculture after the UK leaves the EU.

Ministers and officials are in regular contact with the Scottish Government on the need for common frameworks. The Secretary of State last met Ministers from the Scottish and Welsh Governments and senior officials from Northern Ireland on 14 May 2018 when the need for common frameworks was discussed.

It is our intention that each administration has the freedom to design policies that support their farming sectors and enhance their environment. We are working with the devolved administrations to identify where common frameworks are required. Common frameworks should only be established where they are needed; whether this is to maintain a functioning UK internal market, to strike trade deals, or to provide the certainty required to meet international obligations.

George Eustice
Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
23rd May 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what support his Department has provided to the devolved administration in Edinburgh to devise agricultural policies for the period after the UK leaves the EU.

Agriculture is a devolved responsibility, and it is the Government’s intention that each administration has the freedom to design policies that support the individual characteristics of their agricultural industries and unique landscapes.

The Government has committed to work closely with the Devolved Administrations and stakeholders to deliver an approach that works for the whole of the UK and reflects the individual needs of Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland; subject to where common frameworks may be necessary.

George Eustice
Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
23rd May 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what new initiatives his Department has implemented to support rural communities in Scotland in the last six months.

Responsibility for policy, and any related initiatives, to support rural communities in Scotland rests with the Scottish Government.

George Eustice
Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
14th May 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs, what his Department's policy is on the establishment of UK-wide frameworks for agriculture after the UK leaves the EU.

We are committed to working closely with the devolved administrations on the development of common frameworks that work for the whole of the UK and reflect the devolution settlements of Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland. Common frameworks should only be established where they are needed, whether this is to maintain a functioning UK internal market, to strike trade deals, or to provide the certainty needed to meet international obligations.

George Eustice
Secretary of State for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs
14th Mar 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for International Trade, if he will take steps to ensure that contracts for the delivery of (a) NHS and (b) other public services will be excluded from future trade deals.

I refer my Hon. Friend for Ochil and South Perthshire to the answer I gave to the Hon. Member for Midlothian on 26 February 2019, UIN 224362.

29th Mar 2018
What the work programme of the Board of Trade is.

Not only has the Board of Trade met for the first time in 150 years, delivered its first overseas mission, and been out across the country meeting businesses, but later today, I will be travelling to Preston for the second meeting of the Board of Trade where I will be announcing a new National Trade Academy programme and the winners of the inaugural Board of Trade Awards - the BOFTAS.

6th Mar 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for International Trade, what assessment he has made of the effectiveness of his Department's work in helping secure further investment into Scotland from mainland China and Hong Kong.

The Department for International Trade (DIT) has a whole of UK approach to investment and actively promotes Scotland as one of the leading locations to invest in and set up business operations. There are also DIT officials based in Scotland, working on export and investment promotion. From April 2017 to date, working in collaboration with Scottish Development International (SDI), DIT has supported several investments into Scotland from China and Hong Kong, creating 176 jobs. DIT provides a pipeline of projects to the Devolved Administrations and works together to ensure projects land in the UK.

14th May 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what steps his Department is taking to prepare for the merger of the Scottish Division of British Transport Police with Police Scotland.

The two Governments have established an official level Joint Programme Board (JPB) to oversee arrangements for delivering the transfer of the British Transport Police’s functions in Scotland. Membership of the Board includes representatives from both Governments, the two Police Authorities and the two Police Forces.

The UK Government’s ambition is to see a smooth transition to the new arrangements for policing the railways, with the focus on ensuring the continued effective policing of the railways once responsibilities are split between the British Transport Police and Police Scotland, including appropriate coordination arrangements.

Whilst significant progress has been made on a number of aspects of integration, including preparing the secondary legislation which will transfer those BTP officers and staff currently responsible for policing the railways in Scotland to Police Scotland, a number of significant operational issues remain to be resolved. For this reason the Scottish Government announced in February that the planned 1 April 2019 transfer date would not be achieved. A detailed re-planning exercise is now underway to ensure robust delivery plans are in place for all of the key elements of the programme and to establish a new delivery date.

18th Jan 2018
What assessment he has made of the potential benefits of High Speed Two for the Midlands and the north.

HS2 will help transform the UK economy, directly creating 25,000 new jobs - 70 percent of which will be outside of London. It will directly link 8 of the UK’s 10 largest cities and provide a step change in the country’s railway capacity. The Government regularly assesses the benefits of HS2 through the economic and strategic business cases.

18th Jan 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what steps his Department is taking to ensure that Scotland benefits fully from the High Speed Two project.

Scotland stands to benefit substantially from HS2. When Phase One opens in 2026, services will run directly between London and Glasgow, bringing the journey time below 4 hours. When the full HS2 network opens in 2033, journeys between London and Glasgow and Edinburgh will be 3 hr 40 min. The Department for Transport estimates HS2 will deliver around £5bn of benefits to the Scottish economy.

6th Sep 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, whether he has received an application to the Access for All programme for funding for platform nine at Stirling station; and if he will meet the hon. Member for Ochil and South Perthshire the effect of lack of accessibility at that station on residents of Ochil and South Perthshire constituency.

Stirling station was included in the original Access for All programme but no solution to provide access to every platform could be found. The funding was therefore reallocated to other stations in Scotland. We are seeking new money to extend Access for All beyond 2019. If this is successful we will be asking the industry for new station nominations next year.

27th Jun 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, if she will make an assessment of the potential merits of giving universal credit claimants the option of monthly payments or four weekly payments.

The amount of Universal Credit paid to claimants reflects, as closely as possible, the actual circumstances of a household during each monthly assessment period.

Monthly assessment periods align to the way the majority of employees are paid and how utility companies and other service providers collect payments. It also allows Universal Credit to be adjusted each month, this means that if a claimant’s income falls, they will not have to wait several months for a rise in their Universal Credit.

We have recently reviewed and updated guidance to help ensure claimants, staff and representatives are aware of the importance of employers reporting accurate dates and the impact on payment cycles.

We know that some people find managing their money challenging and Alternative Payment Arrangements (APA) can be provided to help them manage that change. These include: managed payment of the Universal Credit housing cost to landlords; making payments more frequently; and splitting the payment between partners within the household.

APAs can be requested by a claimant at any point during their claim and are considered on a case by case basis and assessed by Universal Credit staff. Staff work closely with claimants and are trained to gauge a claimant’s financial needs at their initial interview, and throughout their claim, based on their personal circumstances.

We continuously review Universal Credit using feedback from claimants and stakeholders. We are currently trialling new ways of working around more frequent payments, monitoring the outcomes to further inform improvements to the service.

Alok Sharma
COP26 President (Cabinet Office)
13th May 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, how much Government funding has been allocated to (a) Citizens Advice Bureau and (b) other organisations to support universal credit and other benefit claimants in Scotland.

As of May 2019, the Department has funded Citizens Advice Scotland with £2,343,378 to provide the Help to Claim service for Universal Credit claimants in Scotland.

DWP staff also have discretion to signpost benefit claimants to local support services where appropriate.

Alok Sharma
COP26 President (Cabinet Office)
18th Dec 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, how much her Department has spent on funding for universal credit roll-out and disability welfare in (a) Clackmannanshire and (b) Perth and Kinross in the constituency of Ochil and South Perthshire.

The financial model and reporting for Universal Credit roll-out and disability welfare is undertaken at a national level and we do not break these cost categories into lower level geographies, such as constituencies. We therefore do not hold the information requested.

Alok Sharma
COP26 President (Cabinet Office)
23rd May 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what recent representations she has received from the Scottish Government on its preparations for (a) welfare devolution and (b) the establishment of a Scottish social security agency.

We continue to work closely with the Scottish Government on the transfer of welfare powers covered by the Scotland Act 2016. The Joint Ministerial Working Group on Welfare was set up to oversee the devolution of social security powers and meets regularly to discuss progress and resolve issues. The group is attended by ministers from both Governments and includes the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, the Secretary of State for Scotland and the Cabinet Secretary for Communities, Social Security and Equalities. The next meeting is due to take place on 14 June.

The establishment of the Social Security Agency is a matter for the Scottish Government.

Alok Sharma
COP26 President (Cabinet Office)
16th Mar 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, whether personal independence payment claimants are able to choose to undergo a face-to-face reassessment.

Detailed information on award reviews can be found in Part 1 of the Personal Independence Payment Assessment Guide: Personal Independence Payment (PIP) assessment guide for assessment providers - GOV.UK

6th Mar 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, how his Department contacts customers to advise them that they are going to be re-assessed for personal independence payments; whether they are notified of such reassessments in advance; and whether they receive a letter advising them that their claim has stopped after which they are able to appeal the decision.

All existing Disability Living Allowance (DLA) claimants have been reminded since 2013 in their annual DLA uprating letters about Personal Independence Payment (PIP) and when they will be invited to claim and under what circumstances. Examples of the DLA uprating letter can be found on the PIP Toolkit: https://www.gov.uk/guidance/the-personal-independence-payment-pip-toolkit.

Where DLA claimants are selected to claim PIP because their existing award is coming to an end, or they are randomly selected because they have a long or indefinite award of DLA, they are sent a letter. The letter explains that their DLA will end and that if they want to continue to receive support they must make a claim for PIP, provide information when requested and attend any potential assessment consultation. The letter also explains that we will continue to pay DLA until a decision has been made on their PIP claim. Examples of some of these invitations are also available from the PIP Toolkit.

Once a decision has been made on a claim to PIP, claimants are informed in the decision notification of the Mandatory Reconsideration and Appeal rights that apply.

26th Feb 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what guidance her Department has issued on conducting PIP assessments of people with degenerative diseases.

The Personal Independence Payment Assessment Guide provides comprehensive guidance for Health Professionals regarding all aspects of the assessment process, including for claimants with progressive conditions. The guide is updated regularly and published on GOV.UK

18th Dec 2017
What steps he is taking to ensure that universal credit supports people to progress at work and increase their earnings.

Universal credit provides us with the opportunity to support people to progress and we are developing the evidence base about what works.

Building on our existing suite of trials, which includes a large scale Randomised Control Trial, we have committed an additional £8m to testing different approaches to supporting people to progress.

Damian Hinds
Minister of State (Home Office) (Security)
18th Dec 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, whether he plans to ensure higher standards of service and stricter key performance indicators to improve performance when the contract for work capability assessments is up for renewal in 2018.

The contract for the delivery of Work Capability Assessments expires in February 2020. As part of the two year extension agreement, we have agreed higher standards of service and improved Key Performance Indicators.

During the remaining term of our current contract both the Department and our supplier will continue its drive for continuous contractual performance improvement and even higher standards. We will review our future requirements as part of our preparations for re-contracting.

17th Jul 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, whether the Government plans to provide transitional financial support to women affected by the change in the retirement age; and if he will make a statement.

The Government has already made a concession worth £1.1 billion that will reduce the impact of these increases on those women most affected by them.

This issue has been debated numerous times and numerous statements have already been made. Introducing further concessions cannot be justified given the imperative to focus public resources on helping those most in need.

Guy Opperman
Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department for Work and Pensions)
20th Feb 2018
What recent assessment he has made of the strength of the UK’s diplomatic relations with China.

As my Rt Hon. Friend the Prime Minister said during her recent visit to China, in this ‘Golden Era’ of UK-China relations, our relationship is broad and deep, and delivering real benefits for both countries. We are global partners, working together to strengthen further our trade links and tackle global challenges.

4th Sep 2019
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, whether the £160 million announced in Spending Round 2019 as a result of the Bew Review will be ringfenced for agriculture so that the Scottish Parliament can decide how it is allocated within that sector.

The Chancellor announced at the recent Spending Round that we will provide £160m to the Scottish Government in 2020-21 in relation to historic allocations of Common Agricultural Policy ‘convergence’ funding. The additional funding will be ring-fenced for farmers and land managers in Scotland. The review led by Lord Bew of Donegore has considered a separate but related matter.

Rishi Sunak
Chancellor of the Exchequer
8th May 2019
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, what steps HMRC takes to verify the income of people liable for child maintenance payments.

The Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) are responsible for the assessment of Child Maintenance payments, including the verification of the absent parent’s income. Upon request from DWP, HMRC provide information held on their National Insurance and PAYE Service, or their Self-Assessment Service. The information is made available under a Memorandum of Understanding, and is for the latest completed tax year.

Elizabeth Truss
Minister for Women and Equalities
27th Mar 2019
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, whether he plans to change the law on the income threshold requirement for buy-to-let mortgages by (a) lowering the threshold and (b) removing the requirement for the threshold to be more than the rent from the let property.

The independent Prudential Regulatory Authority (PRA) is responsible for the regulation of the underwriting of buy-to-let mortgages. Under the PRA’s Supervisory Statement of September 2016, firms are required to conduct: an interest coverage ratio test which compares expected rental income to the monthly interest cost of mortgage repayments; and/or an income affordability test. Lenders must also take into account future changes to interest rates over a minimum period of five years. The purpose of this is to prevent lenders taking excessive risk by ensuring that the borrowers have the ability to repay the loan.

Beyond the requirements set out in the regulations, decisions concerning how lenders assess mortgage applications are commercial decisions for banks and building societies. I hope you can appreciate that it would be inappropriate for the Government to intervene in these decisions.

John Glen
Economic Secretary (HM Treasury)
8th Oct 2018
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, whether he plans to review the Access to Banking Standard.

The Government recognises that branch closures can be difficult for the customers affected and urges the banks to consider these concerns when making decisions on their branch network. That is why Government supports the Access to Banking Standard, and makes clear to the banks and building societies who have signed up that they should participate genuinely and with the spirit of the agreement, not just the letter, in mind.

The Government supports the Lending Standard’s Board’s monitoring and enforcing of the Standard, and welcomed their recent report on firms’ compliance with its requirements. The Government considers the current scheme of oversight to be working effectively at present.

The Government will continue to monitor the effectiveness of the Access to Banking Standard, and Lending Standards Board oversight of it, to ensure that it continues to strike the right balance between providing commercial flexibility and consumer protection.

John Glen
Economic Secretary (HM Treasury)
3rd Sep 2018
To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer, whether he has plans to allow builders of new nursery school buildings to zero-rate the VAT on building materials and services used in the construction.

The government applies a zero of rate of VAT to the construction of charitable buildings. This includes nursery buildings where they operate as charities. While all taxes are kept under review, the application of further zero rates is strictly limited by EU law.

Future VAT rules will depend on the outcome of negotiations with the EU. Any future decisions on VAT will continue to be taken as part of the normal Budget process.

1st Jun 2018
To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer, whether he has plans to ring-fence funding allocated from National Productivity Investment Fund to the devolved administrations.

The National Productivity Investment Fund (NPIF) was established to provide £31 billion of additional capital spending to areas critical for improving productivity – transport, digital infrastructure, housing and R&D. Where responsibility for these policy areas sits with the devolved administrations, such as housing and roads, they have received increases in their capital budgets as a result of the application of the Barnett formula to changes in spending in England. The devolved administrations have full control over how they allocate this funding.

The UK Government is also investing UK-wide in sectors where it has responsibility, including research and development funding, and investment in digital infrastructure.

Elizabeth Truss
Minister for Women and Equalities
24th May 2018
To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer, how much spending from the National Productivity Fund has resulted in Barnett consequentials funding to Scotland in (a) 2017-18 and (b) 2018-19.

The Scottish Governemnt have received Barnett Consequentials totalling £111.2 million (2017-18) and £189.0 million (2018-19) following allocations made to the National Productivity Investment Fund.

Elizabeth Truss
Minister for Women and Equalities
23rd May 2018
To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer, what assessment his Department has made of the potential merits of introducing regional stock exchanges throughout the UK; and if he will make a statement.

The Government conducted a consultation in 2010 that sought views on regional exchanges

As noted in the Government’s response almost all respondents to the consultation did not favour the introduction of such exchanges (https://assets.publishing.service.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/253763/bis-10-1242-financing-business-growth-response.pdf).

There are no legislative barriers preventing market participants from setting up regionally-focused exchanges, provided they receive the required approvals from the Financial Conduct Authority.

John Glen
Economic Secretary (HM Treasury)
16th Mar 2018
To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer, when he next plans to meet representatives of the Clydesdale Bank to discuss rural branch closures.

Treasury Ministers and officials have meetings with a wide variety of organisations in the public and private sectors, including RBS, Lloyds and Clydesdale and Yorkshire Banking Groups, as part of the process of policy development and delivery. Details of ministerial and permanent secretary meetings with external organisations on departmental business are published on a quarterly basis and are available at: https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/hmt-ministers-meetings-hospitality-gifts-and-overseas-travel

The decision to open or close branches is a commercial matter, in which the Government does not intervene. However, the impact of closures on communities must be understood, considered and mitigated where possible.

The industry’s Access to Banking Standard, launched in May 2017, commits banks to ensure personal and business customers are better informed about branch closures and the reasons for them closing, along with the options they have locally to continue to access banking services, including specialist assistance for customers who need more help. The Access to Banking Standard is monitored and enforced by the independent Lending Standards Board.

99% of personal and 95% of banks’ business customers are now able to withdraw cash, deposit cash and cheques, and make balance enquiries at a Post Office counter via its network of 11,600 branches. In February, I wrote to the Post Office and UK Finance requesting further details of their proposals to raise public awareness of the banking services available at the Post Office for individuals and SMEs. I look forward to receiving their proposals later this month.

John Glen
Economic Secretary (HM Treasury)
16th Mar 2018
To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer, when he next plans to meet representatives of the Bank of Scotland to discuss rural branch closures.

Treasury Ministers and officials have meetings with a wide variety of organisations in the public and private sectors, including RBS, Lloyds and Clydesdale and Yorkshire Banking Groups, as part of the process of policy development and delivery. Details of ministerial and permanent secretary meetings with external organisations on departmental business are published on a quarterly basis and are available at: https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/hmt-ministers-meetings-hospitality-gifts-and-overseas-travel

The decision to open or close branches is a commercial matter, in which the Government does not intervene. However, the impact of closures on communities must be understood, considered and mitigated where possible.

The industry’s Access to Banking Standard, launched in May 2017, commits banks to ensure personal and business customers are better informed about branch closures and the reasons for them closing, along with the options they have locally to continue to access banking services, including specialist assistance for customers who need more help. The Access to Banking Standard is monitored and enforced by the independent Lending Standards Board.

99% of personal and 95% of banks’ business customers are now able to withdraw cash, deposit cash and cheques, and make balance enquiries at a Post Office counter via its network of 11,600 branches. In February, I wrote to the Post Office and UK Finance requesting further details of their proposals to raise public awareness of the banking services available at the Post Office for individuals and SMEs. I look forward to receiving their proposals later this month.

John Glen
Economic Secretary (HM Treasury)
16th Mar 2018
To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer, when he next plans to meet representatives of the Royal Bank of Scotland to discuss rural branch closures.

Treasury Ministers and officials have meetings with a wide variety of organisations in the public and private sectors, including RBS, Lloyds and Clydesdale and Yorkshire Banking Groups, as part of the process of policy development and delivery. Details of ministerial and permanent secretary meetings with external organisations on departmental business are published on a quarterly basis and are available at: https://www.gov.uk/government/collections/hmt-ministers-meetings-hospitality-gifts-and-overseas-travel

The decision to open or close branches is a commercial matter, in which the Government does not intervene. However, the impact of closures on communities must be understood, considered and mitigated where possible.

The industry’s Access to Banking Standard, launched in May 2017, commits banks to ensure personal and business customers are better informed about branch closures and the reasons for them closing, along with the options they have locally to continue to access banking services, including specialist assistance for customers who need more help. The Access to Banking Standard is monitored and enforced by the independent Lending Standards Board.

99% of personal and 95% of banks’ business customers are now able to withdraw cash, deposit cash and cheques, and make balance enquiries at a Post Office counter via its network of 11,600 branches. In February, I wrote to the Post Office and UK Finance requesting further details of their proposals to raise public awareness of the banking services available at the Post Office for individuals and SMEs. I look forward to receiving their proposals later this month.

John Glen
Economic Secretary (HM Treasury)
12th Mar 2018
To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer, whether organisations in Scotland will be able to access funding from the UK Shared Prosperity Fund.

Further to my answer of Parliamentary Question 131221, the UKSPF will support organisations in all parts of the UK to achieve sustainable inclusive growth based on our modern industrial strategy

Elizabeth Truss
Minister for Women and Equalities
6th Mar 2018
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, if he will take steps to lower the level of taxation for pilot training; and if he will make a statement.

The Government is aware that airlines often require their pilots to make a contribution to their own training costs.

At Autumn Budget 2017, the government announced it would consult on extending the scope of tax relief available for self-funded work-related training by employees and the self-employed. This consultation was published on 13 March 2018.

In addition, the government is supporting the development of training schemes through the apprenticeship levy. The levy, which was launched on 6 April 2017, will fund a step change in apprenticeship numbers and quality. The levy helps to reverse the trend of underinvestment in training by employers and put control of funding for apprenticeships in employers’ hands. Employers have already developed new apprenticeship standards in aviation, which include Airside Ground Specialist and Aviation Operations Manager. The Commercial Airline Pilot standard is currently in development.

6th Mar 2018
To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer, whether it is his policy for the UK Shared Prosperity Fund to be available to managing authorities in all parts of the UK.

The government has committed to create a United Kingdom Shared Prosperity Fund following Brexit. The fund will support all regions across the four nations of the UK to achieve sustainable, inclusive growth, based on our modern industrial strategy. Further details on the fund will be set out in due course.

Elizabeth Truss
Minister for Women and Equalities
26th Feb 2018
To ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, when he plans to publish further details on the setting up of a UK Shared Prosperity Fund.

The Government has committed to launch the UK Shared Prosperity Fund after the UK leaves the EU, using money returning to the UK from European structural funds. The Industrial Strategy White Paper announced that the Government would launch a consultation this year.

Elizabeth Truss
Minister for Women and Equalities
18th Jan 2018
To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer, what assistance the Government plans to make available to communities which have no local bank on account of recent back closures; and if he will make a statement.

The Government is committed to improving access to financial services. The decision to open and close branches remains a commercial judgement for banks. However, the impact of closures on communities must be understood, considered and mitigated where possible.

The industry’s Access to Banking Standard, launched in May 2017, commits banks to ensure personal and business customers are better informed about branch closures and the reasons for them closing, along with the options they have locally to continue to access banking services, including specialist assistance for customers who need more help. The Access to Banking Standard is monitored and enforced by the independent Lending Standards Board.

99% of personal and 95% of banks’ business customers are now able to withdraw cash, deposit cash and cheques, and make balance enquiries at a Post Office counter via its network of 11,600 branches. At Autumn Budget 2017, my predecessor wrote to the Post Office and UK Finance to ask them to raise public awareness of the banking services available at the Post Office for individuals and SMEs. I look forward to receiving their proposals later this month.

John Glen
Economic Secretary (HM Treasury)
21st Jan 2019
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, what assessment he has made of the potential merits of bringing forward regional salary thresholds for non-UK workers to allow businesses to recruit employees in line with regional economic circumstances after the UK leaves the EU.

The Migration Advisory Committee considered this issue and found that there was no strong economic case for regional differentiation within the im-migration system.

6th Mar 2018
To ask the Secretary of State for the Home Department, how many new mobile phone masts are intended to be built by (a) EE and (b) the Extended Area Services project in Ochil and South Perthshire constituency under the Emergency Services Network programme.

I can confirm that EE are planning 5 new sites in the constituency of Ochil and South Perthshire that will provide the necessary coverage needed for the Emergency Services Network (ESN), subsequently there are no plans for any Extended Area Service (EAS) sites in the region.

6th Mar 2018
If he will discuss with the Scottish Government steps to prevent accounting errors which are detrimental to local government budgets; and if he will make a statement.

Local Government is a devolved matter in Scotland and all issues relating to local government budgets and accounting are the responsibility of the Scottish Government.

The Scottish Government and Ministry for Housing, Communities and Local Government both attend the CIPFA/LASAAC Accounting Code Board, where accounting rules and best practice for local authorities across the UK are discussed.

Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government officials also have ad hoc contact with Scottish Government officials to share best practice and discuss matters of mutual interest for Local Government Finance in England and Scotland.

19th Jul 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland, what recent progress has been made on the Stirling and Clackmannanshire City Deal.

Following my meeting with the hon Gentleman and the MP for Stirling, on 4 August I met with the Leader of Stirling Council and his officials to discuss progress with the Deal.

My officials followed up by meeting Stirling and Clackmannanshire Councils on 29 August. We are keen to reach agreement on the terms of an ambitious Deal as soon as possible, recognising this will require intensive engagement by the local partners.

19th Jul 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland, what recent progress has been made on the Tay City Deal.

The UK Government continues to press ahead with discussions with the Tay City partners and I can confirm that further talks took place at the end of August.

Local partners have put forward a large number of proposals, and the next step is to scrutinise these proposals rigorously to identify together which can deliver transformational change for the economy of the Tay Cities region.

11th Jul 2017
To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland, what progress has been made on the Stirling and Clackmannanshire City Deal; and what further steps can be taken to accelerate that deal.

We are making good progress on our commitment to a City Deal for every city region in Scotland, and I hope to have some good news very soon on the Edinburgh City Deal.

We have opened negotiations on Stirling and Clackmannanshire, and we are working with the Tay Cities partners to develop the Deal.

We are also driving forward with the innovative, cross-border Borderlands Deal, which will see transformative investment into the local economies along the Border.