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Written Question
Employment: Tax Avoidance
26 Oct 2017, midnight

Questioner: Jeremy Quin

Question

To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer, what assessment he has made of the effect on compliance of the recent reforms to off-payroll working in the public sector; and what recent assessment he has made of the level and effects of non-compliance relating to the recent reforms to off-payroll working in the private sector.

Answer (Mel Stride)

The off-payroll rules (commonly known as IR35) ensure that where an individual would be an employee if they were engaged directly rather than through their own company, they pay broadly the same taxes as employees. Since April 2017, public sector bodies have been responsible for deciding if these rules apply. Early analysis of tax receipts between April and June shows that around 90,000 additional new engagements occurred in the public sector above the level that would normally be expected. This indicates more individuals are being taxed as employees since the reforms, and is consistent with the government’s expectations that the reforms would increase tax compliance in the public sector.

The cost of non-compliance in the private sector is continuing to increase: the latest estimate is that tax losses to the Exchequer will grow to £1.2 billion a year by 2022/23. This is part of the wider increasing cost of incorporation highlighted by the OBR in their 2017 Fiscal Risks Report.


Written Question
Primary Education: Standards
20 Mar 2017, midnight

Questioner: Jeremy Quin

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what steps the Government is taking to improve the quality of primary education.

Answer (Nick Gibb)

We have placed phonics at the heart of the early teaching of reading as we want all children to be fluent readers by the time they leave primary school. Results from this year’s phonics screening check show that, since its introduction in 2012, over 147,000 more six year olds are now on track to become excellent readers.

We are also investing £41m to enable primary schools to introduce highly effective south-east Asian mastery teaching methods, and we introduced a new more rigorous primary curriculum in 2014 raising standards in reading, writing and maths throughout the primary school phase.


Written Question
Southern: Staff
13 Mar 2017, midnight

Questioner: Jeremy Quin

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what discussions he has had with GTR-Southern on the adequacy of the number of on-board supervisors in their area of operation.

Answer (Paul Maynard)

Southern has created a new on-board supervisor (OBS) role for guards. These crew members are passenger-focussed and trained to manage emergencies.

Although operational staffing requirements are for the train operator to manage, the Department is aware that Southern will roster an on-board supervisor (OBS) on all trains which previously had a conductor. In addition, Southern has hired around 90 additional on-board supervisors and those staff are already working to assist passengers on Southern trains.


Written Question
Schools: West Sussex
9 Mar 2017, midnight

Questioner: Jeremy Quin

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, with reference to the Answer of 4 December 2015 to Question 17715, on schools in West Sussex, what criteria was used to make the decision between fringe and non-fringe areas in West Sussex.

Answer (Nick Gibb)

Within West Sussex, the Crawley district forms part of the London fringe, while the rest of the local authority area is outside the fringe. The distinction is a longstanding feature of the teachers’ pay system, dating back at least 30 years. Decisions on pay, including the current geographical criteria for designating fringe areas, are based on recommendations by the School Teachers’ Review Body (STRB). This independent body was established in 1991 to examine and report on matters relating to the statutory conditions of pay and employment of school teachers in England and Wales. The STRB can review the boundaries for the fringe if requested to do so by the Secretary of State.

London fringe area arrangements have been part of the mainstream school funding system since financial year 2013 to 2014. Since the school funding reforms were introduced in that year, they have been a feature of the local funding formulae in the five local authorities who have some of their schools within the London fringe area (Buckinghamshire, Essex, Hertfordshire and Kent, along with West Sussex), enabling an uplift to be applied to the affected schools’ budgets.


Written Question
Schools: West Sussex
9 Mar 2017, midnight

Questioner: Jeremy Quin

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, with reference to the Answer of 4 December 2015 to Question 17715, on schools in West Sussex, whether the distinction between fringe and non-fringe areas in West Sussex is subject to review and if so on what basis.

Answer (Nick Gibb)

Within West Sussex, the Crawley district forms part of the London fringe, while the rest of the local authority area is outside the fringe. The distinction is a longstanding feature of the teachers’ pay system, dating back at least 30 years. Decisions on pay, including the current geographical criteria for designating fringe areas, are based on recommendations by the School Teachers’ Review Body (STRB). This independent body was established in 1991 to examine and report on matters relating to the statutory conditions of pay and employment of school teachers in England and Wales. The STRB can review the boundaries for the fringe if requested to do so by the Secretary of State.

London fringe area arrangements have been part of the mainstream school funding system since financial year 2013 to 2014. Since the school funding reforms were introduced in that year, they have been a feature of the local funding formulae in the five local authorities who have some of their schools within the London fringe area (Buckinghamshire, Essex, Hertfordshire and Kent, along with West Sussex), enabling an uplift to be applied to the affected schools’ budgets.


Written Question
Schools: West Sussex
9 Mar 2017, midnight

Questioner: Jeremy Quin

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, with reference to the Answer of 4 December 2015 to Question 17715, on schools in West Sussex, in what year her Department first made the distinction between fringe and non-fringe areas in West Sussex.

Answer (Nick Gibb)

Within West Sussex, the Crawley district forms part of the London fringe, while the rest of the local authority area is outside the fringe. The distinction is a longstanding feature of the teachers’ pay system, dating back at least 30 years. Decisions on pay, including the current geographical criteria for designating fringe areas, are based on recommendations by the School Teachers’ Review Body (STRB). This independent body was established in 1991 to examine and report on matters relating to the statutory conditions of pay and employment of school teachers in England and Wales. The STRB can review the boundaries for the fringe if requested to do so by the Secretary of State.

London fringe area arrangements have been part of the mainstream school funding system since financial year 2013 to 2014. Since the school funding reforms were introduced in that year, they have been a feature of the local funding formulae in the five local authorities who have some of their schools within the London fringe area (Buckinghamshire, Essex, Hertfordshire and Kent, along with West Sussex), enabling an uplift to be applied to the affected schools’ budgets.


Written Question
Govia
20 Jan 2017, midnight

Questioner: Jeremy Quin

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, with reference to the Office of Rail and Road's report, GTR-Southern Railways-Driver Only Operation, published on 5 January 2017, what assurances he has received from that train operating company that the equipment, procedures and staffing are in place as recommended in that report.

Answer (Paul Maynard)

It is for the independent safety regulator - the Office of Road and Rail (ORR) - to judge whether the equipment, procedures and staffing is in place to provide a safe railway operation, and therefore it is to the ORR that such assurances are provided. The Secretary of State for Transport is aware that the operator concerned has provided the necessary assurances as recommended in the report he mentions.


Written Question
Employment
17 Jan 2017, midnight

Questioner: Jeremy Quin

Question

To ask Mr Chancellor of the Exchequer, what assessment he has made of recent trends in the Purchasing Managers' Index as an indication of future trends in the level of employment.

Answer (Simon Kirby)

Recent business surveys show that momentum in the economy has continued. The PMI surveys show a broad-based pickup in activity in late 2016, with output growth reaching a 17-month high in December. This is also reflected in the employment level which currently stands at a historically high level of 31.8m, and has increased by 342,000 over the past year.


Written Question
Southern
20 Dec 2016, midnight

Questioner: Jeremy Quin

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, if he will hold discussions with Govia Thameslink Railway on the action it might take to mitigate the financial effect on retail outlets in train stations of industrial action by employees of Southern Rail.

Answer (Paul Maynard)

The unnecessary industrial action is clearly having an effect on both passengers and businesses.

I am in regular contact with Govia Thameslink Railway and any retailer who feels that the disruption has had a detrimental effect on their business, should contact their managing Agent, Amey PT. Govia has assured me that each case will be looked at on an individual basis.


Written Question
Southern
20 Dec 2016, midnight

Questioner: Jeremy Quin

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, what reports he has received on Southern trains (a) being taken out of service and (b) skipping stations or suffering delays due to cameras on driver-only operation trains failing.

Answer (Paul Maynard)

Govia Thameslink Railway is not required to provide the Department with detailed information on the causes of train failures. Officials have discussed camera failures with Southern, who confirmed that there has been a noticeable increase in camera defects reported. However, when investigated, no faults have been found by technical teams.


Written Question
Personal Independence Payment: West Sussex
14 Nov 2016, midnight

Questioner: Jeremy Quin

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, how many appeals were registered between July 2015 and June 2016 following assessment for personal independence payments for (a) new claimants and (b) reassessments for (i) Arun (E07000224), (ii) Chichester (E07000225), (iii) Worthing (E07000229), (iv) Adur (E07000223), (v) Horsham (E07000227), (vi) Crawley (E07000226) and (vii) Mid Sussex (E07000228).

Answer (Oliver Heald)

The information requested is not held centrally.


Written Question
Personal Independence Payment: West Sussex
14 Nov 2016, midnight

Questioner: Jeremy Quin

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, how many appeals have been closed, that were registered between July 2015 and June 2016, with (a) a change and (b) no change to the original award after assessment for personal independence payments for (i) new claimants and (ii) reassessments in (A) Arun (E07000224), (B) Chichester (E07000225), (C) Worthing (E07000229), (D) Adur (E07000223), (E) Horsham (E07000227), (F) Crawley (E07000226) and (G) Mid Sussex (E07000228).

Answer (Oliver Heald)

The information requested is not held centrally.


Written Question
Personal Independence Payment: West Sussex
14 Nov 2016, midnight

Questioner: Jeremy Quin

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, how many appeals have been closed, that were registered between July 2015 and June 2016, with a change to the original award without representation after assessment for personal independence payments for (a) new claimants and (b) reassessments in (i) Arun (E07000224), (ii) Chichester (E07000225), (iii) Worthing (E07000229), (iv) Adur (E07000223), (v) Horsham (E07000227), (vi) Crawley (E07000226) and (vii) Mid Sussex (E07000228).

Answer (Oliver Heald)

The information requested is not held centrally.


Written Question
Personal Independence Payment: West Sussex
11 Nov 2016, midnight

Questioner: Jeremy Quin

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, how many appeals from new claims and reassessments between June 2015 and July 2016 are outstanding after assessment for personal independence payments in (a) Arun (E07000224), (b) Chichester (E07000225), (c) Worthing (E07000229), (d) Adur (E07000223), (e) Horsham (E07000227), (f) Crawley (E07000226) and (g) Mid Sussex (E07000228).

Answer (Phillip Lee)

The information requested is not held centrally.


Written Question
Personal Independence Payment: West Sussex
11 Nov 2016, midnight

Questioner: Jeremy Quin

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions, what the average median number of weeks' clearance times were after assessment for personal independence payments for new claimants and reassessments in (a) Arun (E07000224), (b) Chichester (E07000225), (c) Worthing (E07000229), (d) Adur (E07000223), (e) Horsham (E07000227), (f) Crawley (E07000226) and (g) Mid Sussex (E07000228) between July 2015 and June 2016.

Answer (Penny Mordaunt)

The table below gives statistics on the median clearance time in weeks for Personal Independence Payment (PIP) for normal rules cases in selected local authority areas. The figures relate to the time between the return of the case from the Assessment Provider (AP) to the date of the decision made by DWP on the case. The figures are for those cases returned by the AP to DWP between 1 July 2015 and 30 June 2016.

New Claims

Reassessments

Adur

1

3

Arun

1

3

Chichester

1

2

Crawley

1

3

Horsham

1

3

Mid Sussex

1

3

Worthing

1

3

Table 1: Median PIP clearance times in weeks, from return from AP to DWP decision.

Source: PIP Computer Systems


Written Question
Prisons: Mental Health Services
6 Sep 2016, midnight

Questioner: Jeremy Quin

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Justice, what assessment the Government has made of the effectiveness of its policies on supporting prisoners with mental health issues; and if she will make a statement.

Answer (Phillip Lee)

We know that people with mental health problems are disproportionately represented in the Criminal Justice System, and these conditions require treatment. We are working with health partners, as part of prison reform, to improve the data and evidence we collect to assist with evaluating health interventions. We are committed to meeting the mental health needs of prisoners. All prisons have procedures in place to identify, manage and support people with mental health issues.


Written Question
Schools: Admissions
30 Nov 2015, midnight

Questioner: Jeremy Quin

Question

To ask the Secretary of State for Education, what steps she is taking to provide parents of summer-born children with flexibility to decide in which year group their children start school.

Answer (Nick Gibb)

We are concerned that some parents of summer born children either feel forced to send their children to school before they are ready, and before compulsory school age, or risk missing the reception year at school where the essential teaching of early reading and arithmetic takes place.

Subject to parliamentary approval, we have therefore decided to amend the School Admissions Code to ensure that summer born children can be admitted to the reception class at the age of five, where this is what their parents want, and can remain with that cohort as they progress through school, including through to secondary school. We will conduct a full public consultation in due course.
I recently set out this policy intent in an open letter to parents, schools and local authorities. The letter is available here: www.gov.uk/government/publications/summer-born-children-nick-gibbs-letter-about-school-admissions.