Written Answers to questions not answered at Mayor’s Question Time on

НазваниеWritten Answers to questions not answered at Mayor’s Question Time on
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MPS hire cars

Question No: 139 / 2010

Dee Doocey

The MPS spent £7.2 million on hire cars in 2008/9, and a total of £48.2 million over the last 5 years. Can you let me know what proportion of these cars were used for surveillance and/or special operations, where anonymous and changing vehicles may be required for operational purposes?

Answer from the Mayor:

I have been informed that the proportion of hire vehicles used by the MPS on surveillance and/or special operations averages around 36% over the past 5 years. These figures are higher in some of the years than others.

A strategic review of the MPS fleet was conducted at the end of 2008/2009, which has already resulted in a 40% reduction in overall use of hire vehicles since November 2009.


Special constables – working hours

Question No: 140 / 2010

Dee Doocey

When did the minimum hours requirement for a Special Constable within the Metropolitan Police Service increase from 16 hours to 25 hours a month, and for what reason?

Answer from the Mayor:

I have been informed that the new minimum hours requirement will apply to officers joining after 31 March 2010.

Special Constables play an increasingly important part in meeting the policing demands in London. With an increased expectation of 300 hours per year, the MPS will be able to deliver up to 2 million hours of additional policing.


MPS recruitment

Question No: 141 / 2010

Dee Doocey

Further to your answer 3848/2009, can you tell me when all candidates currently “in the system” will have joined the MPS?

Answer from the Mayor:

At present there are circa 2000 candidates waiting for a start date. Based on the number of candidates waiting for a start date, the pool may be exhausted by the end of March 2013.


Vacancy Rate

Question No: 142 / 2010

Dee Doocey

In preparing your draft budget for 2010-11 please supply me with the figure for the staff vacancy rate used in setting the core GLA budget, and for the Functional Bodies as at January 1st 2010. How does this compare with January 1st 2009?

Answer from the Mayor:

For the GLA, the vacancy rate is 5.85% for both 2009-10 and 2010-11.

For the MPA, the police officer budget for 2009-10 includes a vacancy rate of around 1% within business groups to enable the funding of additional trainees required to achieve target strength. The 2010-11 budgets do not include a vacancy rate because of the need to bring recruits through is minimal. For police staff budgets, the MPS does not apply a corporate vacancy factor to individual business groups when setting the budget. For 2010-11 the business groups have set budgets locally that will deliver an agreed strength (establishment) in those areas. As part of this exercise the business groups will include an appropriate level of vacancy throughout the year reflecting local circumstances in order to optimise the use of local resources.

For LFEPA, the vacancy margin assumptions in the 2010-11 budget have not increased from the 2009-10 budget. The operational vacancy margin is £1.122m in 2009-10 which equates to 27 posts. The non uniformed vacancy margin is £0.556m which equates to 12 posts.

The TfL staff budget assumes that all roles are filled either by a permanent or temporary resource. This was also the case in 2008/09 and 2009/10. As part of the £5bn efficiency programme a number of roles are reducing over time through a combination of organisational change, reduction of temporary workers and not filling vacancies as they arise.

The LDA’s staff budget for 2010/11 was set using the established structure and posts were costed according to their respective grade, irrespective of whether they were filled or vacant. A similar method was used to set the 2009/10 staffing budget.


Events – private sponsorship

Question No: 143 / 2010

Dee Doocey

For each of the following events, funded by the LDA, can you tell me how much private sponsorship was raised (if they have not yet occurred please state the sponsorship target): London Film Day, Notting Hill Carnival, Mayor’s Thames Festival, Chinese New Year, St Patrick’s Day, New Year’s Eve, Jazz Festival, Pride London, One Magic Summer, Maslenitsa, Festival of London, USA Day?

Answer from the Mayor:

Many of the events that have been funded by the LDA are managed by external organisations who are responsible for delivering the event and taking the financial risk, and for securing additional income to support the event.

Whilst we don’t always have the full costs of delivering the event, just the details to which the funding is attributed, the following indicates the total event costs where known.

London Film Day: Externally organised. Additional value-in-kind support of £75,000.

Notting Hill Carnival: Externally organised. LDA funding is directed to the stewarding operation – no additional funding is secured for stewarding. No details are available on costs to deliver the full event.

Mayor’s Thames Festival: Externally organised. Event costs approx £1.6m to deliver.

Chinese New Year: Externally organised. Event costs approx £320k to deliver.

St Patrick’s Day Festival: GLA organised. Projected additional income £60k.

New Year’s Eve: GLA organised. No additional sponsorship funding.

London Jazz Festival: (extension to outer borough activity) Externally organised, the whole Jazz Festival costs approx £501k to deliver.

Pride London: Externally organised. Event costs approx £310k to deliver.

One Magic Summer: GLA organised. No additional sponsorship funding.

Maslenitsa: Externally organised. Event costs approx £170k to deliver.

Festival of London: GLA organised, event details yet to be confirmed.

USA Day: GLA organised. Projected additional income £50k.


Criteria for funding events

Question No: 144 / 2010

Dee Doocey

What criteria are used to decide which festivals or events will be supported with funding from the GLA and/or LDA?

Answer from the Mayor:

The GLA supports events that are considered to contribute to my strategic objectives. This support is either in-kind, or, in a limited number of cases, financial, but we do not operate a grant giving system where funds can be regularly applied for. Events that celebrate the culture and communities of London are supported, often through partnership arrangements with established groups or organisations, which in turn provide financial, programming or other forms of support to make the staging of such events possible.

LDA funded events need to meet the LDA objectives of economic impact. Large-scale events and those with an international dimension, such as New Year’s Eve fireworks, Chinese New Year and St Patrick's Day festivals, promote London, encouraging economic development and inward investment, nationally and internationally.

Event proposals that are submitted to the GLA are presented to the monthly Mayor’s Events Steering Group (MESG), which includes Deputy Mayor Richard Barnes, Cultural Advisor Munira Mirza and Director of Marketing Dan Ritterband, as well as other key stakeholders including LDA and Visit London.


Events within the Olympic Park (1)

Question No: 145 / 2010

Dee Doocey

What events do you have planned within the Olympic Park during the period following completion but prior to the Games in 2012?

Answer from the Mayor:

Visit London and the Olympic Park Legacy Company (OPLC) are considering opportunities for staging events in the Park in the time available. 

Events within the Olympic Park (2)

Question No: 146 / 2010

Dee Doocey

Would you consider running an open competition which would allow local community groups and charities all over London to bid to run an event in the Olympic Park in the period following completion but prior to the Games in 2012?

Answer from the Mayor:

Visit London and the Olympic Park Legacy Company (OPLC) are considering opportunities for staging events in the Park in the time available. 


Olympic and paralympic ticketing

Question No: 147 / 2010

Dee Doocey

In response to my question 3254/2009 you stated that it would not be possible to give discounted tickets to any particular group of people because of European Union law. I understand that in a situation where there are mitigating circumstances for a particular group (such as living near the park and being disturbed by the construction for 7 years) it would be entirely possible to construct an argument for giving discounted tickets to certain groups of Londoners. Will you support me in asking LOCOG to investigate this further?

Answer from the Mayor:

As I said in my previous answer, I am working with LOCOG to ensure that tickets are as affordable and accessible as possible to all Londoners. 


Accommodation strategy (1)

Question No: 148 / 2010

Mike Tuffrey

In preparing your draft budget for 2010-11 please let know what the GLA’s Executive has advised you should be the accommodation strategy for City Hall?

Answer from the Mayor:

The GLA’s accommodation strategy is centred on optimising space utilisation in City Hall whilst introducing a more flexible working culture and a variety of workspaces. This will be achieved by nomadic ICT systems, extended use of shared desking, touch down work stations and the creation of informal business lounge areas.

Given that the Organising for Delivery process involved a net reduction in the number of posts at the GLA, along with the introduction of a new working culture, there is now an opportunity to sub-let the third floor of City Hall. Any income received from doing so will contribute towards meeting GLA facilities and ICT costs.

The principles underlying the approach being adopted by the GLA are that (i) savings for the GLA Group should arise from the sub-letting (ii) the GLA would not charge a partner organisation more than that partner organisation is currently paying in premises costs (iii) the tenant will be compatible with the aims and objectives of the GLA (iv) a rationalisation of GLA Group office space should arise from the sub-letting, if at all possible (v) a discount would be offered to suitable registered charities, such as the Mayor’s Fund.


Accommodation strategy (2)

Question No: 149 / 2010

Mike Tuffrey

In preparing your draft budget for the GLA in 2010-11 please set out what the cost of the accommodation strategy, including clearing the 3rd floor of City Hall, was budgeted for. What will the 3rd floor be used for, when will a new use begin, and is any income generation anticipated?

Answer from the Mayor:

In 2009-10 £150,000 was set aside to cover the additional facilities and ICT costs associated with the building restack project in City Hall, including any necessary re-organisation on the third floor. For 2010/11 no additional funds have been set aside.

The London Waste & Recycling Board and the Mayor’s Fund already pay for the desks they occupy in City Hall. They will continue to do so when they relocate to the vacated third floor at the end of January 2010.

The GLA is currently seeking additional paying tenants to fill the remaining vacant space on the third floor, in line with the principles outlined in the answer to 148/2010.

Given the uncertainties involved, no income from sub-letting the third floor of City Hall has been budgeted for by the GLA for 2010/11.


Implementation of Technology Services for the OfD Programme

Question No: 150 / 2010

Mike Tuffrey

Further to MD486, which you signed on 11 November 09 (but only appeared on the GLA website this January) can you provide the total cost of the new technology services, including the cost of moving equipment for which additional resources had not been identified in the MD?

Answer from the Mayor:

Four contractors where taken on for four months to support the implementation of the new telephony services and to support the moving of technology as part of the office moves arising from OFD.

Total cost (4 persons) = 6150 x 4 = £24,600. This cost has been charged to the IT Capital Programme.

The total cost of the technology work to support OFD is:

Voice over IP (Flexible telephony) - £80,000

Wireless networking - £75,000

Resources - £24,600

Total Cost - £179,600


Paper fares guide

Question No: 151 / 2010

Mike Tuffrey

Given the introduction of PAYG on National Rail, and significant changes to Oyster single fares, why was a paper fares guide not available at stations on or before 2 January 2010?

Answer from the Mayor:

The information leaflet ‘Oyster pay as you go on National Rail’, giving sample fares, was available at many National Rail stations in December 2009.

A comprehensive paper fares guide was not introduced this year, following an extensive study of customer usage of previous annual TfL Fares and Ticketing leaflets.  The results found that, in general, customers prefer to ask station staff about fares, alongside other questions about journey planning and so on. They do not proactively seek the leaflet in the station.  When shown a copy of the leaflet, customers found it too complex for their purpose, which is usually to seek an individual fare or product.

The research showed customers seek simple and tailored information, appropriate to their needs, for example, on concessionary fares. Three separate leaflets, which are available at Underground stations and many National Rail stations, have been produced for 2010:

  • Getting around with Oyster

  • Getting around with Discounts (concessionary fares), and

  • Welcome to London (for visitors).

The TfL website now offers an online fares finder

(http://www.tfl.gov.uk/tfl/tickets/faresandtickets/farefinder/current) and the Oyster helpline is open seven days a week to help with fares enquiries.


Bus Fare Increase

Question No: 152 / 2010

Mike Tuffrey

What publicity did TfL undertake to warn bus passengers of the Oyster single fare increase?

Answer from the Mayor:

To highlight the January 2010 fares revision, TfL ran a pan-London campaign across the TfL network including posters in the Tube, DLR and London Overground stations, in bus shelters and advertisements in the Metro. The campaign was started in the week ending 11 December 2009, and ran for five weeks, promoting the fares revision from 2 January 2010. It also directed customers to the TfL website (www.tfl.gov.uk/fares) for further detailed information.


Single fares finder

Question No: 153 / 2010

Mike Tuffrey

Further to my previous calls for an effective fares calculator, the added level of detail on the TfL website single fare finder is welcome. However this states that “using Oyster pay as you go on National Rail is cheaper than paying cash” although this is not always the case, for example:

a) 16-25 railcard holders travelling on National Rail in the TfL afternoon peak, when a paper ticket may be cheaper;

b) National Rail Annual Gold Card holders who cannot yet put their concession on an Oyster Card.

What steps are you taking to ensure that travellers easily and reliably find the cheapest fares? Will you link the fares finder to the Journey Planner to improve its accuracy?

Answer from the Mayor:

Thank you for bringing this to my attention.

I have asked TfL to review the wording on the TfL website to cater better for Railcard holders.

It remains the case that, with the very specific exceptions of certain Railcards, Oyster provides the cheapest fares for travel in London.

Linking the Fares Finder to the Journey Planner would be a major and expensive project. TfL will bear the possibility in mind when considering their long-term plans.


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