§ 63. Mr. James Callaghan
asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer whether it has yet been possible to take any steps to relieve the pressure of work on the staffs of tax offices.
§ Mr. Dalton
Yes, Sir. I have instructed the Board of Inland Revenue to make two relaxations of procedure, which, I hope, will greatly reduce the pressure of work in tax offices. For the years 1944–45 and 1945–46, in the case of small incomes taxed under P.A.Y.E., the tax so deducted will be assumed to be the correct tax due, without any further check-up at the end of the year. But any taxpayer who thinks he has paid too much will, of course, still be entitled to demand a check-up.
Further, I have decided that payments of Postwar Credits for 1941–42, 1942–43 and 1943–44 which are to be made to the aged, under the proposals in the Finance Bill, shall be made to all who have been in employment, without proof first being demanded that the recipient owes no Income Tax for these years. The right of the Revenue authorities to recover any arrears of tax due is, of course, unaffected by this administrative emollient.
§ Mr. Callaghan
While this partial relief will be of great assistance, may I ask my right hon. Friend whether he has any hopes of further reliefs, which will do justice to the taxpayer, and, at the same time, help the staff; and will he interest 993 himself in the extremely inadequate accommodation and equipment facilities which are provided?
§ Mr. Dalton
Those are wider questions, and I advise my hon. Friend to be content with what he has now.
§ 75. Sir W. Smithers
asked the Financial Secretary to the Treasury whether he has considered the evidence sent to him indicating that the staff of the Inland Revenue Board is at breakdown point; and what action he proposes to take to remedy this situation.
§ The Financial Secretary to the Treasury (Mr. Glenvil Hall)
I would refer the hon. Member to the statement which my right hon. Friend the Chancellor of the Exchequer has just made.
§ Sir W. Smithers
Is the hon. Gentleman not aware that one of the inevitable results of a collectivism Government, concentrating everything in Whitehall, will be that the machinery will break down, and will he take steps to avoid this?