§ Mr. Lomas
asked the Minister of Housing and Local Government if he is aware of the decision of the Huddersfield local 340W authority to increase rents by 10 per cent. in spite of the fact that the immediate financial problems could be overcome with an increase of five per cent.; and whether he will refer this to the National Board for Prices and Incomes.
§ Mr. Mellish
The fixing of rents is the council's responsibility and they are not required to report their decisions to my right hon. Friend. The Government do not regard local authority rents as a suitable subject for the National Board for Prices and Incomes as they are not fixed on a commercial basis and are subsidised by the Exchequer. They hope, however that increases will be avoided as far as possible. They have made it clear that where local authorities find that rent increases cannot be avoided, the fullest use should be made of rent rebates to protect tenants of modest means.