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New Clause—(Repeal Of 8 & 9 Geo V, C 40, S 70)

Volume 155: debated on Wednesday 28 June 1922

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Section seventy of the Income Tax Act, 1918, is hereby repealed.—[Mr. Pennefather.]

Brought up, and read the First time.

I beg to move, "That the Clause be read a Second time."

I will give a short explanation of what we mean by this new Clause. Section 70 something which, according to the Act of 1918, they were never supposed to pay on at all. This particular Amendment does create a difficulty, but cannot the right hon. Gentleman find some other form of words. I think it might be possible if the Scottish legal advisers were here.

Question put, "That the Clause be read a Second time."

The Committee divided: Ayes, 20; Noes, 118.

of the Income Tax Act, 1918, gives permission to corporations to appoint three to seven members of the corporation as Income Tax Commissioners in relation to persons employed by them. That Section applied to every city in the country, but in practice it only applies to London and Liverpool, so I am informed. A great many of the corporation employés in Liverpool object to it, and I think the

shortest way of stating the case is to read a brief extract from a letter from the Liverpool and District Teachers' Association, written on their behalf and on behalf of other servants of the corporation.

"They desire that they shall be assessed by the local Surveyor of Taxes to enable them to obtain notice of assessment and receipts for the amounts paid. By Section 70 of the Income Tax Act, which in practice is only applied to Liverpool and London, Income Tax deductions have been made by the Liverpool Corporation, no notice of assessment or receipt being furnished to the taxpayer. This has led to much inconvenience and hardship. The Royal Corn-mission on Income Tax has made a recommendation for the transfer of the duty of assessing employés under Schedule E to the Inspector of Taxes."

Section 70 gives permissive powers to all corporations of cities. The point is that these Commissioners are only appointed in London and Liverpool. I cannot speak for London. It seems to have gone to bed, but although it is a quarter to four in the morning, Liverpool is awake. The Liverpool Corporation employés only ask to be placed on the same footing as the employés of great towns like Manchester, Birmingham and Glasgow. [An HON. MEMBER: "Justice all round!"] Precisely. It is not unreasonable that they should be so treated. These people say that they are suffering hardship and inconvenience which is not suffered by other ordinary citizens who are employés of the corporations in other great cities of the country.

I appreciate the point which my hon. Friend has made. I am not sure I am entirely out of sympathy with him because the employés have made him their spokesman.

It is only an accident that I am their spokesman. The names of four other Liverpool Members are down to the Clause.

I will give my hon. Friend the assurance that I shall look into any defects that there are in regard to this matter in the course of next year. I do not think that there is an immediate grievance that wants to be remedied, but I shall certainly look into the question and remedy any grievance that I find to exist.

Motion and Clause, by leave, withdrawn.

The proposed new Clause to be inserted after Clause 26, standing in the name of the hon. Member for Watford (Mr. Dennis Herbert)—[Amendment of s. 38 (3) of 5 & 6 Geo. V, e. 89]—is not, T think, in order, as it might increase the charge.

No, in certain circumstances it might increase the charge. It is not very easy for me to make the point clear at this hour of the morning, but there is no doubt that in certain circumstances it might increase the charge.

I am very sorry, but I cannot follow how it can increase the charge.

I do not wish to do the hon. Member an injustice, and we may have some light en the point from the Chancellor of the Exchequer.

I cannot venture to explain what my hon. Friend means by the Amendment, because I have difficulty in understanding it.