Sir J. D. REES
asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer whether he has received a 2140W resolution passed by 600 delegates of trading, industrial, ratepayers and municipal organisations throughout the country, protesting against the adoption or continuance of any policy which will, or may, add to the already heavy rates and taxes, which hamper trade and development and injuriously affect individual and corporate enterprise in all directions; and, if so, what action will be taken on such resolution?
I have received this resolution, and in conjunction with my right hon. Friends the Ministers of Health and Education, I had the honour of discussing it with a very representative deputation last week. As far as the resolution relates to affording information to Parliament, both as to past and current expenditure of local authorities, and also as to the estimated burden upon the rates involved in new legislative proposals, we will gladly do what is possible to adopt the proposals that have been put before us, and I am sure that the proposition that progress in educational and health reform should be adapted to the state of the national and local finances will be readily endorsed by my right hon. Friends. The procedure of this House in regard to measures imposing fresh charges upon the rates is, however, essentially a matter for the decision of the House itself, and, as stated by my right hon. Friend the Leader of the House on Monday last, the Government propose to invite the House to appoint a Select Committee to consider it.