That sounds like the same error i am getting. Plus a hell of a lot more!
I have checked and i have version 2.1.11-98 of pci-utilities but no dev and usbutils version 1.0-678.
Do you think not having the dev version of pci-utilities is the problem. It seems unlikely as the previous version had no issues and there where no problems during the source compile of hotplug.
Arggghhhhhhh it was all going so well, oh well back to the drawing board