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Written Answers

Volume 939: debated on Friday 18 November 1977

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Written Answers To Questions

Friday 18th November 1977

Civil Service

Civil Servants (Administration Group)

asked the Minister for the Civil Service if he will list for 1976 the number of civil servants in the administrative group for each Department of

(a)(b)(c)(d)(e)
DepartmentInefficiencyLimited efficiencyRedundancyDisciplineTotal
Ministry of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food10034
Cabinet Office02024
Civil Service Department0240125
H.M. Customs and Excise314412
Ministry of Defence4155464
Department of Education and Science01102
Department of Employment Group*1201316
Department of Energy00022
Department of the Environment1312934
Export Credits Guarantee Department10001
Registry of Friendly Societies10001
General Register Office, Scotland10001
Department of Health and Social Security1201013
Home Office00011
Central Office of Information00011
Inland Revenue506415
Land Registry30003
Lord Chancellor's Department50027
Royal Mint00606
Department for National Savings31059
Ministry of Overseas Development01012
Paymaster General's Office01001
Office of Population Censuses and Surveys20013
Scottish Office00011
Departments of Trade and Industry00314
H.M. Treasury11103
Total33407785235
* Includes Department of Employment, Employment Service Agency, Health and Safety Executive, and Training Services Agency.

Employment (Post-Retirement)

asked the Minister for the Civil Service in view of the fact that among the various benefits claimable by the top paid civil servants are public honours, permanency of employment, and non-contributory pensions which were granted to these recipients on condition that on retirement they would refrain from going into private and public business, and since fully indexed pensions are now payable, he will take action to ensure that these people do not take employment on retirement, as was the case until a few years ago.

State who were retired prematurely on grounds of ( a) inefficiency, ( b) limited efficiency, ( c) redundancy and ( d) discipline.

The information requested by the hon. Member is set out in the table below:

No, my hon. Friend has been misinformed. Subject to appropriate safeguards, it has never been the practice to discourage civil servants generally from taking up business appointments on retirement.

Ministers (Pay)

asked the Minister for the Civil Service whether he will publish in the Official Report a detailed list of expense allowances, amounts of moneys and other benefits as stated payable to Ministers and junior Ministers in addition to their ministerial salaries; and whether he will arrange for these payments to be paid on a need basis.

No special allowance other than the London supplement is payable to Ministers in addition to salary. The supplement, at the rate of £340 for Cabinet Ministers and £385 for other Ministers, is paid to Ministers based in London—except those provided with an official residence—to compensate for the additional cost of living in the capital.Ministers staying away from home or travelling on official duty are entitled to reimbursement of expenses at the same rates as laid down for the most senior civil servants. These are:

Motor Mileage Allowance
Engine capacityper mile
501–1000 c.c.10·6p
1001–1750 c.c.12·3p
1751 c.c. and over13·4p
Subsistence
Day
More than 5 hours£1·20
More than 10 hours£2·55
Night
Inner London£23·15
Elsewhere£21·30

Energy

Thermal Insulation

asked the Secretary of State for Energy what are his plans to improve the take-up by pensioners of grants to insulate their homes as a way of saving energy.

Publicising the availability of such grants is, of course, primarily a matter for the Government Departments concerned—namely, the Department of Health and Social Security and the Department of the Environment. However, the Department of Energy is at present in consultation with them about the possibility of issuing a short leaflet on this subject. Reference to the assistance available will be made in the revised edition of the Department's booklet "Compare Your Home Heating Costs", which I hope will be published early next year.

Coal Mining

asked the Secretary of State for Energy if we will give an assur- ance that his investment plans for the coal mining industry are not affected by the result of the recent miners' ballot against the proposed productivity agreement.

Yes. The Government's re-endorsement of "Plan for Coal", stated in February this year in "Coal for the Future", holds good.

Coal Miners (Pay)

asked the Secretary of State for Energy if he will issue a White Paper giving details of the efforts which he made to persuade coal miners to accept the National Coal Board's productivity bonus scheme.

pursuant to his reply [official Report 14th November 1977, Vol. 939, cols 11–12], gave the following further information:The statement was:

Miners' Incentive Scheme

There are three good reasons why the incentive scheme should recommend itself to miners in this week's ballot.

First, it was devised to avoid the evils of past piece-work schemes which set men against men and lowered safety standards. This new scheme, which was worked out by those who know the industry best, is based on machine power and not muscle power to get the coal that Britain needs.

Secondly, it comes at a time when the longer-term expansion of the coal industry has been agreed and when an integrated national energy policy is becoming a reality.

Thirdly, it offers the prospect of an increase in pay now for all mine workers.

I hope—and believe—that the miners will give the scheme a fair trial.

Home Department

Criminal Law Act 1977 (Enforcement)

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department whether he is intending to publish advice to police officers on the operation of Part II of the Criminal Law Act 1977.

I am sending my hon. Friend a copy of the Home Office Circular to chief officers of police, dated 2nd November 1977, about Part II and other provisions of the Criminal Law Act 1977 brought into force by the Criminal Law Act 1977 (Commencement No. 3) Order 1977. This circular has already been placed in the Library of the House.

Sunday Trading

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department how many prosecutions have been undertaken for breaches of the Shops Act 1950 relating to Sunday trading in each of the last three years.

The information is as follows:

Persons proceeded against for offences against Part IV (Sunday Trading) of the Shops Act 1950—England and Wales
YearNumber of persons
1974496
1975399
1976402

Fire Service (Dispute)

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department if he is satisfied that the distribution of the emergency fire-fighting resources gives fair coverage to those rural and semi-rural areas where the strike has closed down normal fire-fighting provisions; and, in particular, if he is satisfied with the emergency cover available in the Arfon Borough Council area.

As I explained in my statement on 9th November—[Vol. 938, c. 672–3]—the Government have a duty to do all that they can to protect life and property in the situation which faces us. With the assistance which the Government have provided, fire authorities will provide the best fire cover possible in the circumstances. But I am under no illusions that the assistance which has been provided can match that provided by the regular fire service, in the Arfon group of stations in Gwynedd and elsewhere.

Imprisonment (Pre-Trial Custody)

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department to what extent a period spent in custody prior to the granting of bail subsequently reduces the length of any sentence later imposed on conviction at trial; if he has any proposals for amending Section 67 of the Criminal Justice Act 1967; and if there is any difference in the situation if no bail before trial is ever granted.

Provided a person is not in custody for any reason other than the offence or offences for which he is to be tried, any period or periods spent in custody before trial are deducted from a determinate sentence of imprisonment subsequently imposed in respect of the offence or offences. This applies whether or not part of the time awaiting trial is spent on bail. We have no proposals to amend Section 67 of the Criminal Justice Act 1967.

Death Certification And Coroners

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department what progress is being made towards the implementation, in advance of legislation, of recommendations of the Committee on Death Certification and Coroners (the Brodrick Committee); and if he will make a statement.

The Working Party on the Coroners Rules, which I announced on 29th July 1976—[Vol. 916, c. 341–2]—was being set up, with the concurrence of the Lord Chancellor and the Law Officers, has submitted a report on the completion of the first part of the task assigned to it and has made recomendations for changes in the Coroners Rules consequent upon the abolition by the Criminal Law Act 1977 of the coroner's power to commit for trial. These recommendations have been accepted, and my right hon. Friend the Home Secretary has concurred with the Lord Chancellor in making the necessary Amendment Rules, which will come into effect on 1st January 1978. The working party's report will be published and a copy will be placed in the Library.The Working Party will now be invited to consider what changes in the Coroners Rules 1953 (as amended) would be necessary to implement the procedural reforms recommended by the Brodrick Committee which can be achieved under existing legislation, and to make recommendations.

Firemen (Pay)

asked the Secretary of State for the Home Department what would be the weekly rates of pay for firemen in London and the provinces respectively if the proposed increase of 10 per cent. were accepted.

The current weekly rates of pay of whole-time firemen generally and for firemen in the London Fire Brigade were given in my reply to a

Length of serviceWhole-time Fireman Weekly pay including threshold payment and Phases I and II supplementsLondon Whole-time Fireman Weekly pay including London Allowance, threshold payment and Phases I and II supplements
££
On appointment at age 19, first six months' service57·8068·79
After six months and during second year60·3871·64
During third year63·2674·77
During fourth year66·36
During fifth year (when fully qualified)72·2980·67
After 15 years' service and fully qualified75·5183·82
On appointment at age 22 or over a fireman enters the scale at the second point.

Overseas Development

Directorate Of Overseas Surveys

asked the Minister of Overseas Development whether a final decision has yet been taken on the dispersal of the Directorate of Overseas Surveys; and, if so, what it is.

Yes. The decision has not been easy. However, in line with the Government's regional policy, and to help improve the job situation in one of the hardest hit areas of the country, we have decided that the Directorate should, as originally proposed, be dispersed to the Glasgow area.

Prices And Consumer Protection

Fares (London)

asked the Secretary of State for Prices and Consumer Protection (1) when he expects to receive the report of the Price Commission on the London Transport Executive application for price increases;(2) what consultations with representatives of all interested parties, including transport users, he had before reference to the Price Commission of any proposed London Transport fare increases;

question on 16th June 1977 by my hon. Friend the Member for Newham, North-West (Mr. Lewis)—[Vol. 933. c. 225–6]—If the proposed increase of 10 per cent. with effect from 7th November 1977 were accepted their weekly rates of pay would be:

(3) why the reference of proposed fare increases by the London Transport Executive to the Price Commission was not made public, in view of the public interest in this matter; and if he will make a statement;

(4) whether he has referred to the Price Commission for the purpose of investigation under Section 4 of the Price Commission Act the proposed fare increases on London Transport services and if he will make a statement.

Since the coming into force of the Price Commission Act on 1st August no proposed fare increases have been notified by London Transport Executive to the Price Commission. The question of an investigation does not, therefore, at present arise.

Potato Crisps

asked the Secretary of State for Prices and Consumer Protection whether, in view of the fall in the market price of potatoes, he will ensure that the prices of potato crisps are also reduced.

The Price Commission asked the major manufacturers of potato crisps at the end of July what action they were taking to reduce the price of their products in view of the tall in the market price for potatoes. The manufacturers responded that they were increasing the weight of the contents of packets of crisps as an alternative to reducing the prices. This is an appropriate response to the improvement in raw material prices and I have been glad to note that packet sizes have now been increased.

Social Services

Violence In The Family

asked the Secretary of State for Social Services when he expects to publish the Government's response to the First Report from the Select Committee on Violence in the Family, Session 1976–77, on non-accidental injury to children.

Hospital Consultants And Specialists

asked the Secretary of State for Social Services if he will not ratify any new agreement regarding the terms of service for whole-time or part-time hospital consultants and specialists until such time as Parliament gives its approval.

The terms and conditions of service of hospital consultants are a matter for negotiation between the Government and the representatives of the medical profession. In the course of the current negotiations on a new form of consultant contract I have emphasised that any new contract must fully reflect the value we place on whole-time commitment to the National Health Service. I shall continue to do so, and will certainly inform the House before a new contract takes effect.

Handicapped Persons (Dental Care)

asked the Secretary of State for Social Services if he will introduce legislation to enable area dental officers working within the National Health Service to examine and treat mentally handicapped adults at adult training centres.

Legislation is not necessary but, as I told my hon. Friend the Member for Brent, South (Mr. Pavitt) on 26th October—[Vol. 936, c. 743]—I and my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Scotland and my right hon. and learned Friend the Secretary of State for Wales intend to make a direction authorising health authorities, at their discretion and if they have the spare capacity to do so, to treat the adult handicapped. The consultation necessary for the introduction of these arrangements is now under way.

European Community (Health Council)

asked the Secretary of State for Social Services if he will list the subjects for discussion at the European Communities Health Council meeting on 13th December 1977.

The likely subjects, which have yet to be confirmed, for discussion at the Meeting of EEC Health Ministers on 13th December 1977, are

  • 1. Exchange of views on the economic aspects of health;
  • 2. Future policy on health education with particular reference to tobacco addiction, drug abuse and nutrition;
  • 3. The battle against certain diseases with special reference to the problem of vaccination;
  • 4. Mutual aid in the event of disasters and outbreaks of exceptionally serious diseases.
  • Death Grant

    asked the Secretary of State for Social Services if he will list the value in real terms of the national insurance death grant in each of the last five years.

    On the basis of the movement in the General Index of Retail Prices up to September 1977, the latest month for which figures are available, the value at constant September 1977 prices of the standard rate of death grant over the past five years is given in the following table:

    Year (September)Maximum rate of Death GrantValue at constant September 1977 Prices
    (£)(£)
    197330·0058·77
    197430·0050·19
    197530·0039·65
    197630·0034·69
    197730·0030·00

    Ongar Hospital

    asked the Secretary of State for Social Services if he has received any communication from the area health authority or otherwise in connection with an application to close Ongar Hospital.

    Benefits (Entitlement)

    asked the Secretary of State for Social Services whether he will list in the Official Report the conditions of entitlement in 1973 and 1977, respectively, to social security benefit for (a) males and (b) females.

    I will write to my hon. Friend about these changes as soon as possible.

    Supplementary Benefit

    asked the Secretary of State for Social Serevices, for each year since 1973, what was the total number of (a) males and (b) females in receipt of supplementary benefit following the expiry of their entitlement to unemployment benefit.

    The information is as follows:

    UNEMPLOYED PERSONS RECEIVING SUPPLEMENTARY BENEFIT HAVING EXHAUSTED TITLE TO UNEMPLOYMENT BENEFIT
    (Thousands)
    Year (August)Number of
    MalesFemales
    197312510
    1974998
    1975*1099
    197616916
    197721326

    Source: 100 per cent. count at unemployed benefit offices. Additionally there would have been a few cases where payment was not yet being made through those offices.

    * Estimated.

    Disabled Housewives

    asked the Secretary of State for Social Services if supplementary benefit for disabled housewives will be reduced before the housewives non-contributory invalidity pension is actually paid to those entitled.

    No. If a reduction in supplementary benefit is called for it will be made in the calendar week in which the first payment of the noncontributory invalidity pension is received.

    Trade

    Balance Of Payments

    asked the Secretary of State for Trade if he will publish in the Official Report a table showing for each year since 1945 (a) the surplus or deficit on the current account of the United Kingdom balance of payments, (b) the surplus or deficit on the invisible account, and (c) the surplus or deficit on the visible trade account.

    Annual figures of the United Kingdom's current balance, invisible balance and visible balance for the years 1955 to 1976 are available in Table 1.1 of the publication "United Kingdom Balance of Payments, 1966–1976". Figures covering the period 1946 to 1954 are given in Table 4 of the publication "United Kingdom Balance of Payments, 1971". No official, comparable figures are available for 1945. Copies of the above publications are available in the House of Commons Library.

    Mentmore Towers

    asked the Secretary of State for Trade how many export licences have been: (a) applied for and (b) granted in respect of works of art sold at Mentmore in May 1977; and how many works of art were involved in each case.

    Applicants for export licences for antiques over 100 years old, and for documents, manuscripts, archives and photographic positives and negatives over 70 years old, are not required to state the sources from which they made their acquisitions. Accurate information relating to the licensing of articles from Mentmore is not, therefore, available, and information relating to the licensing of items which could be identified as emanating from Mentmore could only be extracted at disproportionate cost.

    Company Inspection

    asked the Secretary of State for Trade if he plans to improve the system of the company inspectorate within his Department in the light of criticism from the Panel on Take-overs and Mergers; and if he will make a statement.

    The system of company inspections is under constant review, and a year ago my right hon. Friend and I had a meeting of inspectors to consider whether changes and improvements were necessary or desirable. The general view, which I share, was that in essentials present procedures were fundamentally sound. I remain ready to consider any improvements which experience shows to be desirable.

    asked the Secretary of State for Trade if, in future cases, he will state why a company inspection is or is not authorised by his Department in a given case.

    As was recommended by the Jenkins Committee. I do not believe that it would be appropriate for my Department to be required to give detailed reasons for the exercise of investigatory powers. Before the report of the Jenkins Committee it was the practice to forward a statement to the company before an appointment and this practice was much criticised. In my view, we ought not to run the risk of papers being destroyed or altered, or of informants being deterred by fears of retaliation.

    asked the Secretary of State for Trade if he is satisfied that unsuitable persons will not be appointed as company inspectors in view of the concern expressed by the Panel on Takeovers and Mergers.

    MembersAlternate Members
    Chairman
    Mr. Colin North Smith, a senior partner in Peat, Marwick, Mitchell & Co.
    Insurance Company Members
    Mr. Kenneth George Addison, a General Manager of Sun Alliance and London Insurance Group.Mr. Ronald Kenneth Bishop, a director and Deputy Chief General Manager, Phoenix Assurance Company Ltd.
    Mr. Allan Wallace Grant, OBE, MC, TD, Chairman of Ecclesiastical Insurance Office Ltd.Mr. Derek Conway Bourdon, Deputy General Manager, Prudential Assurance Company Ltd.
    Mr. Ian Isles, MC, director of a Scottish Equitable Life Assurance Society.Mr. David Henry Maitland, Managing Director, Save and Prosper Group Ltd.
    Policyholder Representative
    Mr. James Maxwell Wood, OBE, a member of the National Consumer Council.Miss Rosemary McRobert, a council member of Consumers' Association and Director of the Retail Trading-Standards Association.

    Hotels

    I do not think that there is any serious risk that unsuitable persons will be appointed. With legal inspectors, who are either members of the Bar or solicitors, it is my right hon. Friend's usual practice to make appointments after consultation with my right hon, and learned Friend the Attorney-General. Accountant inspectors are appointed after consideration of their suitability for the particular case and, if necessary, after consultation with their professional body.

    Coastguard

    asked the Secretary of State for Trade what was the annual cost of running the Coastguard Service 15 years ago, 10 years ago and five years ago, respectively; and what is the current annual cost.

    The annual cost of running the Coastguard Service, excluding capital expenditure, was £1·445 million in 1971–72 and £3·803 million in 1976–77. Details of running costs 10 and 15 years ago are not now available.

    Policyholders Protection Board

    asked the Secretary of State for Trade, whom he proposes to appoint to the Policyholders Protection Board when the existing appointments expire on 18th November 1977.

    Under his powers in the Policyholders Protection Act 1975 my right hon. Friend has made the following appointments to the Board, to be effective from 19th November 1977 to 18th November 1979:operation of the voluntary code of booking practice in the hotel industry; if he has any further proposals for an extension of this code of practice into other facets of the hotel industry; and if he has received representations from any sector of the hotel industry that a voluntary licensing system of hotels should be introduced.

    I welcome the progress which has been made so far by the hotel industry in operating the voluntary code of booking practice. I expect that it will be adopted still more widely in 1978 in its first full season of operation, by when 1 hope it will be reinforced by an order which I expect to lay shortly before the House regarding disclosure of prices in reception areas. I have received no recent representation from the hotel industry about licensing, but hotels can already register voluntarily with the three national Tourist Boards. I have no immediate plans for any extension of the code.

    Defence

    Social Security Benefits

    asked the Secretary of State for Defence if he will take steps to establish how many officers, NCO's, and men of the Armed Forces are in receipt of (a) family income supplement, (b) free school meals and (c) rent rebate.

    Some 6,600 Service per sonnel are in receipt of rent and rate rebates. This number currently includes about 15 officers.Numbers in receipt of family income supplement and free school meals could not be established without disproportionate effort, since, unlike rent and rate rebates, there is no separate scheme administered by my Department. Service personnel may apply for these benefits or the same basis as other members of the community and eligibility remains a matter between the claimant and the authority concerned However, on the basis of rough estimates made by the Department of Health and Social Security I believe that the number entitled to family income supplement is negligible.

    Contractors

    asked the Secretary of State for Defence whether all suppliers to his Department are specifically approved by his Department and comply with his Department's inspection system.

    The policy on Quality Assurance set out in the 1975 Defence White Paper (Cmnd. 5976) continues in effect. To date, over 4,000 contractors have been registered as complying with defence standards. It is the Ministry's policy to use such suppliers wherever possible, and already about 90 per cent. of current defence spending on procurement is with these contractors.

    Royal Air Force (Commands)

    asked the Secretary of State for Defence how many changes of command of Royal Air Force ground branch stations there have been so far in the current year and in each of the previous three years; how many officers have rejected such appointments; and what has been the principal reason given.

    Figures for commands normally held by group captains in ground branches are:

    YearNumber of Changes
    19748
    19759
    19765
    197712 so far
    No officers have refused such appointments, but personal circumstances art taken into account when selecting potential candidates for such appointments.

    Northern Ireland

    asked the Secretary of State for Defence pursuant to his reply to the hon. Member for Stretford, Official Report, 11th November, on what grounds Her Majesty's Government reduced by half expenditure on improving Army accommodation in Northern Ireland between 1975–76 and 1977–78; and if he will take steps forthwith to restore the £10,700,000 cut from this budget in the current financial year.

    The answer my right hon. Friend gave on 8th November to the hon. Members for Harborough (Mr. Farr) and Eastbourne (Mr. Gow)—[Vol. 938, c. 466–8]—indicated a programme of improvement of soldiers' living accommodation in Northern Ireland as extensive over the past four years as field service conditions will allow. The expenditure figures to which the hon. Member now refers reflect the successful progress of this programme and the fact that last year we were able to vacate a considerable number of the less satisfactory locations. There has been no cut whatsoever in the planned expenditure on this improvement programme, which is proceeding to the limits that operational circumstances permit.

    Service And Civilian Personnel (Reductions)

    asked the Secretary of State for Defence if pursuant to his reply to the hon. Member for Stretford, Official Report, 7th November, column 47, he will give his estimate of the number of the 218,000 Service, civilian and defence industry jobs to be done away with by 1979 as a result of the Government's defence cuts that will be lost in Scotland.

    It is not possible to say how many Service and civilian jobs will be lost in any particular part of the United Kingdom as the planned reductions have not been calculated on a regional basis. However, on 1st July 1977 there were 3,100 more Service personnel employed in Scotland than at 1st July 1974.The number of civilian employees of the Ministry of Defence, including Property Services Agency staff on defence account, working in Scotland fell between 1st April 1974 and 1st July 1977 by about 500.A limited number of further reductions is expected by 1st April 1979.The method used for estimating the levels of employment in industry generated by defence expenditure does not permit any geographical breakdown of the estimates.

    Financial Aid (Landlords Of Rented Properties)

    asked the Secretary of State for Defence if he will undertake to bring Service personnel into line with Foreign Office employees in respect of financial assistance to alleviate accommodation and legal expenses when tenants refuse to vacate private rented properties which constitute a Service family's principal home.

    It would not be possible to extend the Diplomatic Service scheme to the Armed Forces under the current stage of the pay policy except at the expense of the Services' next pay award. We will, however, consider such a scheme when circumstances permit.

    Fire Brigades (Substitution)

    asked the Secretary of State for Defence what will be the basis for assessing compensation payable to Service men injured in fighting fires and payable to the next of kin of those killed while carrying out this duty.

    All members of the Armed Forces who are injured in the course of their duty to the extent that they are no longer fit for service are entitled to "attributable" rates of pension under the occupational pension scheme administered by my Department. The widows and children of those who are killed on duty are also eligible for "attributable" pensions. In addition, Service men, widows and children may expect to benefit under the War Pensions Scheme of the Department of Health and Social Security. The "attributable" pensions under both schemes are related to rank but not to length of service.

    asked the Secretary of State for Defence whether a period of extra leave, or some other practical expression of the public's gratitude, will be given to those Service men who have undertaken fire-fighting duties during the national firemen's strike.

    The fire-fighting duties undertaken by the Armed Forces are part of their normal responsibility to assist in the maintenance of essential services. I have no plans for any specific award in the present circumstances, but I am grateful to the hon. Member for drawing attention to the appreciation the general public feels for the good work the Services have done in the past and are doing now.

    Environment

    Solar Energy

    asked the Secretary of State for the Environment, in the light of the fact that the development of solar energy has meant the saving of money, fuel, and the lessening of the pollution of atmosphere where this form of heating has been installed, whether he will take steps to introduce this form of heating in all buildings and establishments coming within the control or influence of his Department.

    asked the Attorney-General, in the light of the fact that the development of solar energy has meant the saving of money, fuel, and the lessening of the pollution of the atmosphere where this form of heating has been installed, whether he will take steps to introduce this form of heating in all buildings and establishments coming within the control or influence of his Department.

    asked the Secretary of State for Defence, in the light of the fact that the development of solar energy has meant the saving of money, fuel, and the lessening of the pollution of the atmosphere where this form of heating has been installed, whether he will take steps to introduce this form of heating in all buildings and establishments coming within the control or influence of his Department.

    asked the Secretary of State for Education and Science, in the light of the fact tha the development of solar energy has meant the saving of money, fuel, and the lessening of pollution of the atmosphere where this form of heating has been installed, whether she will take steps to introduce this form of heating in all buildings and establishments coming within the control or influence of her Department.

    asked the Secretary of State for Employment, in the light of the fact that the development of solar energy has meant the saving of money, fuel, and the lessening of pollution of the atmosphere where this form of heating has been installed, whether he will take steps to introduce this form of heat- ing in all buildings and establishments coming within the control or influence of his Department.

    asked the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs, in the light of the fact that the development of solar energy has meant the saving of money, fuel, and the lessening of the pollution of the atmosphere where this form of heating has been installed, whether he will take steps to introduce this form of heating in all buildings and establishments coming within the control or influence of his Department.

    asked the Secretary of State for Scotland, in the light of the fact that the development of solar energy has meant the saving of money, fuel, and the lessening of the pollution of the atmosphere where this form of heating has been installed, whether he will take steps to introduce this form of heating in all buildings and establishments coming within the control or influence of his Department.

    asked the Secretary of State for Social Services, in the light of the fact that the development of solar energy has meant the saving of money, fuel, and the lessening of the pollution of the atmosphere where this form of heating has been installed, whether he will take steps to introduce this form of heating in all buildings and establishments coming within the control or influence of his Department.

    asked the Secretary of State for Trade, in the light of the fact that the development of solar energy has meant the saving of money, fuel, and the lessening of the pollution of the atmosphere where this form of heating has been installed, whether he will take steps to introduce this form of heating in all buildings and establishments coming within the control or influence of his Department.

    asked the Secretary of State for Wales, in the light of the fact that the development of solar energy has meant the saving of money, fuel, and the lessening of the pollution of the atmosphere where this form of heating has been installed, whether he will take steps to introduce this form of heating in all buildings and establishments coming within the control or influence of his Department.

    I have been asked to reply.No. To do so in all cases would be premature. The adoption of the solar energy technology currently available for space or water heating in the Government estate would in most cases be uneconomic.A programme of research, development and field trials is in hand within a number of Departments aimed at reducing equipment costs, gaining further information about total costs in use and the level of energy savings achievable, and providing the basis for improved system design, performance and reliability. The Government are also studying the Select Committee on Science and Technology's recent recommendations on the development and promotion of solar energy for space and water heating.

    Rate Support Grant

    asked the Secretary of State for the Environment what estimate he has made of the additional financial resources which would be available to local authorities in Wales in the financial year 1978–79 if the rate support grant were maintained at current levels, the domestic rate were not reduced in any local authority and interest rates remained at approximately their current levels.

    asked the Secretary of State for the Environment whether he will now make a statement about the rate support grant settlement for 1978–79.

    Yes. The statutory meeting on the rate support grant settlement took place today with the Consultative Council on Local Government Finance. A copy of the statement I made at that meeting has been placed in the Library. Briefly my proposals are that the rate support grant should be at a rate of 61 per cent. on relevant expenditure of £12,531 million at November 1977 prices. The planned level of local authority current expenditure in 1978–79 is effec- tively the same as in the settlement for 1977–78.The total amount of additional grant that may be payable under any increase orders relating to 1978–79 will be as in previous years subject to cash limits. These limits accord with the Government's pay and anti-inflation policies; they have been fixed at a total of £525 million.The 1978–79 assessment of local authority spending needs will be based on a regression analysis of local authorities' 1976–77 provisional outturn expenditure. To avoid excessive changes it will be combined with those for 1975–76, 1976–77 and 1977–78. In addition there will be a new "safety net" provision to ensure that no authority's loss of needs element as a result of the 1978–79 distribution arrangements is greater than the equivalent of a 2p rate. To avoid changes to authorities' grant entitlements during the grant year on account of data changes, the data for the distribution will be "frozen" as from this month. The adjustment for London's excess resources will be set to secure that if authorities conform to Government guidelines, the increase in the average rate bill of London domestic ratepayers will be the same as the average increase elsewhere. The framework of the 1977–78 scheme for needs element distribution and rates equalisation within London will be repeated.The resources element will remain at 32½ per cent. of the total of needs and resources element combined. The rateable values used to calculate it will be adjusted to allow compensation to authorities for the mandatory rate relief they give to charities. Domestic rate relief will be maintained at 1977–78 levels, namely 18½p for England and 36p for Wales. There will be limited extra relief for domestic ratepayers in four London boroughs as part of the internal London rate equalisation arrangements.I propose to make a second increase order for 1976–77 giving local authorities additional grant only in respect of changes in the variable items which are excluded from the operation of the cash limit. This is in accordance with the intention I expressed last year. The amount of grant will be £9 million. I also propose to make in increase order for 1977–78. The amount which I intend to pay under the increase order is £337 million. This is within the cash limit which was of course adjusted so that authorities might be fully reimbursed for the extension of the free school meals scheme. The Government will review the position on the cash limit when considering whether to make a second increase order for 1977–78 in the light of all the circumstances of the time.There will be a full opportunity for the House to debate the settlement. I shall be laying the approximate orders for approval within the next few days.

    Housing Starts

    asked the Secretary of State for the Environment if he will publish in the Official Report a table showing for each year since 1945 the number of housing units on which building started.

    Following is the information:

    DWELLINGS STARTED IN GREAT BRITAIN: 1945 TO SEPTEMBER 1977 PUBLIC AND PRIVATE SECTORS
    Thousands
    Public sectorPrivate sectorTotal
    April 1945 to December 194618775262
    194716032192
    194814618163
    194917131202
    195018420204
    195119227219
    195224252294
    195326583348
    1954223107330
    1955185128313
    1956158120279
    1957150126276
    1958122137259
    1959148169318
    1960126183309
    1961123189312
    1962138186324
    1963169199368
    1964179247426
    1965181211393
    1966186193379
    1967214234448
    1968194200394
    1969177167343
    1970154165319
    1971137207344
    1972123228351
    1973113216329
    1974147106253
    1975174149323
    1976171155326
    1977*102103204
    * To 30th September.

    Disabled Persons

    asked the Secretary of State for the Environment when he intends to introduce a Bill to provide rating relief for the disabled.

    Planning Applications

    asked the Secretary of State for the Environment how many planning applications he called in under Section 35 of the Town and Country Planning Act 1971 during the last 12 months for which figures are available.

    During the period 1st July 1976 to 30th June 1977 my right hon. Friend called in 81 planning applications, of which 37 were made by local authorities and seven by or on behalf of foreign Governments.

    Transport

    Minibuses

    asked the Secretary of State for Transport what progress has been made on the Government's negotiations with the EEC to exempt school minibuses from the age limitation specified in Regulation 543/69; and if he will make a statement on age limits for driving such vehicles.

    The age limit of 21 for driving minibuses with more than eight passenger seats is already in operation—Section 1 of the Road Traffic (Drivers' Ages and Drivers' Hours of Work) Act 1976. Drivers under 21 who were authorised to drive minibuses before 1st January 1976 retain their entitlement for vehicles up to a limit of 14 passengers. The Government have no intention of amending these provisions.Regulation 543/69 deals mainly with the control of drivers' hours. It is due to come into effect next year for journeys within the United Kingdom, but a decision of EEC Council of Ministers at the end of last month allows the United Kingdom Government, after consulting the EEC Commission, to modify the application of the regulation to minibuses. Consultations will be held first with interested bodies in the United Kingdom on the terms of such a modification.

    M40 (Warwick—Oxford)

    asked the Secretary of State for Transport what further consideration he has given to the route of the Warwick to Oxford section of the proposed M40 motorway; and whether he will make a statement.

    I would refer the hon. Member to the answer given to the hon. Member for Banbury (Mr. Marten) on 16th November 1977.—[Vol. 939, c. 567–8.]

    Dock Manning

    asked the Secretary of State for Transport whether he will publish the findings of a report prepared for the British Ports Association, the General Council of British Shipping and the National Ports Council, on dock manning.

    This comparison of the performance of selected British and Continental ports in the handling of general cargo in conventional vessels was commissioned by the bodies referred to by the hon. Gentleman. Publication is a matter for them.

    Railways (Financial Allocations)

    asked the Secretary of State for Transport whether he proposes making available to British Railways further allocations to support the Bedford-Bletchley Railway; and whether it is still his policy to secure local authority participation by ultimately making funds available to county authorities for subsequent allocation to British Railways.

    Exchequer support will continue to be given to the passenger railway system as a whole. My policy on the future of cost-ineffective local railway services will be decided in the light of consultations on the proposals in paragraphs 98–105 of the White Paper on Transport Policy (Cmnd. 6836).

    Wales

    Fire Hydrants

    asked the Secretary of State for Wales what statutory provisions exist to oblige water authorities to ensure that there is an adequate water supply to all recognised fire hydrant points in public highways; what steps can be taken against water authorities that fail to meet any such obligation; and if he is satisfied with the current legislation on the matter.

    The statutory responsibility for ensuring an adequate supply of water for fire-fighting purposes rests with fire authorities. They are empowered to enter into agreements with water undertakers on the provision of water and fire hydrants. Penalties are prescribed by law which may be applied to a water undertaker in default of such an agreement. I have no reason to believe that current legislation is unsatisfactory.

    Natural Beauty

    asked the Secretary of State for Wales if he will list the areas of outstanding natural beauty and the areas of great, or high, landscape value.

    The following designated areas of outstanding natural beauty are located in Wales: Gower, Lleyn, Anglesey, Wye Valley (part). No composite list of areas of great or high landscape value in Wales is available and this information could not be provided without the expenditure of a disproportionate amount of time and effort. These areas are defined by local planning authorities in the development plans for their areas for development control purposes and are available for public inspection.

    Building Grants

    asked the Secretary or State for Wales what is the total amount of the grants allocated for listed buildings and the repairs of other buildings, other than improvement grants for housing, in the last 12 months for which figures are available.

    In the year ending 31st October 1977 grants amounting to £198,018 were offered for the repair of outstanding listed buildings in Wales. During the 12 months ending 30th September 1977 grants amounting to £43,697 were approved for the repair of 121 other dwellings in Wales.

    Community Land

    asked the Secretary of State for Wales whether he will list by name and reference number all published circulars, evidence notes, design bulletins or other official communications, including details of any requirements under Section 14(9) of the Community Land Act, which he has sent

    WELSH OFFICE CIRCULARS ETC. RELATING TO THE COMMUNITY LAND SCHEME IN WALES
    Reference NumberTitle
    HMSO publications:
    204/75Certificates of Alternative Development
    206/75General Introduction
    40/76Prescribed Forms Regulations
    44/76Planning Applications and Permissions for Relevant Development
    48/76(a) Scope of Acquisition Powers and Duties
    (b) Blight
    (c) Disposal Notification Areas
    49/76(a) Rolling Programmes of Land Acquisition and Disposal by the Land Authority for Wales
    (b) Land Policy Statements
    54/76Local Government Act 1972: Section 123A Disposal of Land by Local Authorities
    101/76Compulsory Purchase Orders*
    150/76Registers of Land Holdings
    Welsh Office publications:
    Guidelines to LAW No. 1, Disposal of Land: General Disposal Consent issued 11th November 1976
    Circular 103/77Community Land Act 1975, Sections 43 and 44 Application to Local Authorities in Wales
    Guidance Notes (Wales)
    Welsh Office publications:
    GN(W)1Rolling Programmes
    GN(W)2Suspension of Planning Permission: Election Notices
    GN(W)3Purchase of Land Net of Development Land Tax
    GN(W)4DLT: Exemption for Projects started before the Appointed Day
    GN(W)5Community Land and Development Land Tax Legislation
    * Including orders made under other powers.

    asked the Secretary of State for Wales whether the Land Authority for Wales has yet sent him, as required by paragraph 2(1) of Schedule 8 to the Community Land Act 1975, copies of any resolutions declaring disposal notification areas; if so, what are the names of the areas contained in those resolutions; and from what date or dates the resolutions became operative.

    The Land Authority has not so far implemented the provisions in the 1975 Act dealing with disposal notification areas.

    asked the Secretary of State for Wales whether he will list by name, date and reference number any directions which he has so far given to the Land Authority for Wales

    either to local authorities or to the Land Authority for Wales, giving the date of publication in each case.

    Lists of circulars and guidance notes about the scheme in Wales are given below. No design bulletins have been issued and Section 14(9) of the 1975 Act has not been implemented.under the terms of Section 8(3) of the Community Land Act 1975.

    Directions about the exercise of the Authority's powers are given under this subsection on 7th April 1976 and 26th January 1977. The first related to activity within new town areas and the second to the erection of buildings.

    Northern Ireland

    Community Land

    asked the Secretary of State for Northern Ireland what use, if any, has been made of the powers contained in Section 38 of the Community Land Act 1975 since they first took effect.

    Employment

    Unemployment Benefit

    asked the Secretary of State for Employment whether he will list in the Official Report the conditions of entitlement in 1973 and 1977, respectively, to unemployment benefit and associated cash for males and females.

    I have been asked to reply.The contribution conditions for unemployment benefit, and other national insurance benefits, changed between 1973 and 1977. In 1973, under the then flat-rate contribution system, the first contribution condition for unemployment benefit required the payment of 26 weekly Class 1 (employed earner) contributions since entry into insurance and the second contribution condition required 50 Class 1 contributions to have been paid or credited in the contribution year preceding the benefit year in which the claim was made for the full rate of benefit to be payable. (A benefit year started five months after the end of a contribution year.) Following the introduction of a wholly earnings-related contribution system under the Social Security Act 1975, the first contribution condition for unemployment benefit now requires the payment of Class 1 contributions amounting to at least 25 times the amount of the contribution payable on the weekly lower earnings limit for the tax year concerned. This limit is £15 for the 1977–78 tax year. The second condition is met in full if, in the relevant tax year, that is, the tax year immediately preceding the calendar year in which the period of interruption of employment began, Class 1 contributions have been paid or credited on earnings of at least 50 times the weekly lower earnings limit for that year.The other main conditions for the receipt of unemployment benefit, namely, that the claimant must be unemployed and capable of, and available for, work, have not changed between 1973 and 1977.In general, the contribution and other conditions apply equally to males and females. However, married women entitled to unemployment benefit on their own contribution records generally qualify for a lower rate of benefit than do men, single women and widows—this lower rate is being abolished in April 1978—and they can receive an increase of benefit for a husband only if he is incapable of self-support.I have no information about other cash benefits associated with unemployment, apart from supplementary benefit about which I understand my hon. Friend is not concerned.

    Foreign And Commonwealth Affairs

    Drug Traffic

    asked the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what liaison exists between Her Majesty's Government, the Hong Kong Government and Interpol regarding persons in Taiwan wanted for questioning for serious drug offences; and if he is satisfied with the success of any arrangements.

    Taiwan and the United Kingdom are both members of Interpol. Relevant information about drug offences and offenders is supplied by the Government of Hong Kong to Interpol, which distributes it to Taiwan and the United Kingdom at its discretion. My right hon. Friend is satisfied with these arrangements.

    asked the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs how many persons now resident in Canada are wanted for questioning by the Hong Kong Government in connection with serious drug offences.

    asked the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs how many persons now resident in Taiwan are wanted for questioning by the Hong Kong Government in connection with serious drug offences.

    Hong Kong

    asked the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs if he will list in the Official Report the number of persons wanted for questioning by the Independent Commission Against Corruption in Hong Kong in countries other than Taiwan and Canada; and if he will list the countries concerned.

    The following is a detailed breakdown of the whereabouts of persons wanted for questioning by the Independent Commission Against Corruption:

    United Kingdom4
    United States of America2
    Singapore1
    Australia1
    Whereabouts unknown5
    In addition, persons against whom warrants have been issued are located as follows:

    United States of America1
    Indonesia1
    South America1
    Thailand1
    Japan1
    France1
    Whereabouts unknown7

    asked the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what action is being taken by Her Majesty's Government, the Hong Kong Government and Interpol concerning extradition proceedings against persons in Taiwan wanted for questioning by the Independent Commission Against Corruption.

    There are no arrangements for the extradition of offenders from Taiwan to Hong Kong.

    asked the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs how many persons wanted for questioning by the Independent Commission Against Corruption in Hong Kong are in Taiwan.

    About 20 persons against whom warrants have ben issued by the Independent Commission Against Corruption are believed to be in Taiwan. A further 21 persons believed to be in Taiwan are wanted for questioning.

    asked the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs what representations have been made to the Canadian Government concerning persons wanted for questioning by the Independent Commission Against Corruption in Hong Kong by Her Majesty's Government.

    Application for the extradition of one of the two wanted persons believed to be in Canada has been made by the Hong Kong Government. Legal proceedings are still continuing. Whether or not extradition procedings will be instituted against the other persons depends on the outcome of the case. Her Majesty's Government have taken no part in the proceedings which are of a judicial nature.

    asked the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs how many persons wanted for questioning by the Hong Kong Government are now resident in Canada.

    asked the Secretary of State for Foreign and Commonwealth Affairs if he is satisfied with the workings of the Independent Commission Against Corruption in Hong Kong; and if he will make a statement.

    Yes. My right hon. Friend has the highest regard and admiration for the way in which the Independent Commission Against Corruption has been conducted and for the very able and dedicated leadership of the Commissioner, Mr. Jack Cater.

    Industry

    National Enterprise Board

    asked the Secretary of State for Industry what investment has been made to date by the National Enterprise Board in Scotland, Wales and the Northern Region respectively.

    In addition to the NEB's investment in companies in the Northern Region, Scotland, Wales and the Northern Region have all benefited from the NEB's support for British Leyland, Rolls-Royce and Ferranti. Investment in companies operating exclusively in Scotland or Wales is a task for the Scottish and Welsh Development Agencies.

    asked the Secretary of State for Industry what investment to date has been made by the National Enterprise Board in the North-West and Merseyside, respectively.

    Major benefits have resulted from Merseyside and the North-West from the NEB's support for British Leyland, Rolls-Royce, Ferranti, ICL and other companies in these areas.

    asked the Secretary of State for Industry what account he takes of the outside financial interests of those considered for appointment to the National Enterprise Board when making the appointments.

    In pursuance of Schedule 1(1) of the Industry Act 1975 my right hon. Friend invites those persons whom he proposes to appoint to the Board to declare their financial interests to him. He considers these declarations carefully before making appointments.

    Regional Aid

    asked the Secretary of State for Industry what criteria he uses to define areas which receive regional aid in the United Kingdom; and what are the criteria used in each of the member States of the European Communities.

    The criteria for defining areas eligible for regional assistance in the United Kingdom are laid down in the Local Employment Act 1972 and the Industry Act 1972. In defining the areas, the Secretary of State is required to have regard to all the circumstances actual and expected, including the state of employment and unemployment, population changes, migration and the objectives or regional policy. The criteria used in other member States are a matter for their own Goverment and Parliaments.

    Government Aid

    asked the Secretary of State for Industry how many companies have submitted requests for assistance under the selective financial assistance scheme since its launching in December 1976; how many have been approved and how many rejected; and what is the total level of grants so far authorised under the scheme.

    Several hundred approaches under the Selective Investment Scheme have been received. Of these, 38 have been appraised and approved, 88 are under consideration, and 85 have been rejected or withdrawn after initial examination. Assistance approved to date is £11,346,000 for investment projects costing £120,650,000.

    Shipbuilding

    asked the Secretary of State for Industry if the contract for the purchase of ships by Poland has yet been finalised; and if he will make a statement.

    Saudi International Bank

    asked the Secretary of State for Industry what were the qualifications of the Saudi International Bank (Al-Bank Al-Saudi Al-Alami) which enabled him to give a grant of £66,000 under the Industry Acts to the bank; and whether he expects to make further grants to the same applicant.

    Al-Bank Al-Saudi Al-Alami Limited are registered in the United Kingdom and trade as Saudi International Bank. They are therefore eligible to receive regional development grant on approved capital expenditure incurred in providing assets for use in qualifying premises in an assisted area. In this case the bank bought a machine tool which it has leased to a manufacturing company in Lanark, which uses it on premises which qualify for RDG purposes. If the bank submits further grant applications, they will be considered under the normal rules of the scheme.

    Airbus

    asked the Secretary of State for Industry, what is the percentage of British interest in the A300 Airbus; and what representations he is making to the US Government at the restrictions now being imposed at La Guardia Airport, New York, the effect of which will be to ban the Airbus, thus discouraging Eastern Airlines from purchasing the aircraft.

    The United Kingdom is not a partner in the Airbus Industrie consortium, but Hawker Siddeley Aviation—now a British Aerospace company—manufactures the fixed parts of the wings as a sub-contractor. It would be primarily for the French and German Governments, whose companies are the major partners of the consortium, to consider making representations to the United States Government. Any request to support those Governments would, of course, be considered.

    Chrysler United Kingdom Ltd

    asked the Secretary of State for Industry whether, in accordance with clause 8, sub-clause 1 of 5th January agreement between Chrysler United Kingdom Limited and the Government, he will publish the names of the two persons nominated by him as directors of Chrysler United Kingdom Limited; what was the date of their appointment; and what are the specific duties they will undertake.

    My right hon. Friend appointed Mr. Claude Birch and Mr. Roy Grantham to the Board of Chrysler United Kingdom Ltd. on 30th March 1976 and 9th May 1977 and their names were announced to the House on 5th April 1976 and 16th May 1977 respectively. They undertake the normal statutory duties of company directors.

    State Visits

    asked the Prime Minister how many State visits have been arranged in each of the past five years from countries in South America, Africa and the Middle East.

    The information is as follows:

    19732
    1974Nil
    19751
    19761
    1977Nil

    asked the Prime Minister if the Government will consider advising Her Majesty the Queen at the appropriate time to invite His Majesty Qaboos Bin Said, the Sultan of Oman, to visit the United Kingdom on a State visit.

    Her Majesty's Government will of course bear the hon. Member's suggestion in mind.

    National Finance

    Income Tax

    asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer, for the EEC member States, Sweden, USA and Japan and for a married couple with two children under 11 years of age, at what levels of income income tax commences to be payable: and at what initial percentage rate.

    On the assumption that the hon. Member is referring to earned income, the information is as follows:

    Income tax threshold £Initial rate (Percentage)
    United Kingdom1,82134
    Belgium2,15011·2(11·9)
    Denmark2,45014·4(38·6)
    France3,4753·6
    Germany2,35022
    Ireland1,63020
    Italy1,30010
    Luxembourg5,02518·45
    Netherlands3,00019·2
    Sweden4,35025 (51·8)
    USA4,17525
    Japan4,7007 (10·5)

    Notes:

    Thresholds and rates are for income of the 1977 tax year, except for the United Kingdom and Ireland—1977–78—and France—1976. For the United Kingdom the effective raising of the threshold in the recent autumn Budget has been taken into account.

    All income is assumed to be income of the husband. The thresholds and rates apply to income from employment where this is treated more generously than earned income from self-employment. The thresholds take account of personal reliefs and allowances, minimum expense deductions, earned income reliefs or tax deductible social security contributions.

    Figures in brackets include local income tax as at representative rates. In Belgium and Denmark, the threshold for local income tax is the same as that for national income tax.

    United States of America. Certain low-income taxpayers — householders with dependent children—are entitled to a tax credit, which is payable in cash to the extent that it exceeds tax liability. The tax threshold has been taken to be the income level where tax liability exceeds the credit. The nominal rate of tax at this point is 15 per cent.; but since the tax credit is being withdrawn at this point, the effective marginal rate of tax deduction against gross income is 25 per cent. There is no liability for California State income tax—the State tax normally adopted for comparative purposes—at this income level.

    Sweden. Married couples with only one earner are entitled to a tax credit against national income tax, or local income tax to the extent that the credit exceeds national tax liability. The national income tax threshold has been taken to be the income level where national tax liability exceeds the credit. The nominal rate of national tax is 15 per cent. at this point; but since the tax credit is being withdrawn at this point, the marginal rate of tax deduction against gross income is 25 per cent. The threshold and rate for national income tax given in the reply to the Member for Norfolk, North (Mr. Howell) on 24th January 1977—[Vol. 924, c. 408]—took no account of this tax credit and to that extent were potentially misleading.

    Foreign currencies are converted into sterling at the exchange rates for 4th November.

    asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer if he will publish in the Official Report a table showing each change in the standard rate of income tax since the war and indicate for each change the rate before and after the change.

    The standard or basic rate of tax for each year since 1945 has been as follows:

    STANDARD RATE
    1945–4650% (10/- in the £)
    1946–47 to 1950–51 45% (9/-in the£)
    1951–52 and 1952–5347·5% (9/6 in the £)
    1953–54 and 1954–5545%(9/- in the £)
    1955–56 to 1958–5942·5% (8/6 in the £)
    1959–60 to 1964–6538·75% (7/9 in the £)
    1965–66 to 1970–71 41·25% (8/3 in the £)
    1971–72 and 1972–7338·75%
    BASIC RATE
    1973–7430%
    1974–7533%
    1975–76 and 1976–7735%
    1977–7834%
    Basic rate from 1973 to 1974 is not comparable with standard rate owing to the operation of earned income relief, for earlier years, and investment income surcharge, from 1973–74.

    Peers

    asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer, in the light of the fact that for the majority of Members of the House of Peers, their tax free daily allowance is worth as much as £100 per day after tax, whether he will arrange to make these payments taxable or payable on a needs basis.

    Members of the House of Lords are holders of an unpaid office, and as such are not taxable on their attendance allowance, which is a reimbursement, up to a maximum figure of reasonable expenses incurred in connection with the duties of that office.

    Travel Expenses (Members Of Parliament)

    asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer, in the light of the fact that hon. Members have to pay income tax on their travel warrants to and from the House, and Members of the House of Lords receive a first class travel warrant tax free in addition to their tax-free daily allowances, if he will take steps to make treatment of travel warrants for tax purposes on the same basis.

    Hon. Members are the holders of paid offices and are therefore taxable on all their emoluments, including the cost of travel warrants between home and duty. Members of the House of Lords are holders of unpaid offices and so are not taxed on the reimbursement of the cost of their travel to the House.

    Value Added Tax

    asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer whether he will zero-rate for value added tax purpose the works of living artists, writers and musicians and theatre and concert tickets.

    Relief would be inconsistent with the broad-based nature of the tax.

    £ Sterling

    asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer if he will publish in the Official Report a table showing for each year since 1945 the percentage increase or decrease in the internal purchasing power of the £ sterling and the value of a 1945 £ sterling in each subsequent year, respectively.

    Information for 1945 is not available. Column (1) below shows the percentage change on the preceding year of the annual average internal purchasing power of the pound column (2) shows for each year the sum of money with internal purchasing power in that year equivalent to that of £1 in 1946. Since consumers' purchasing patterns have altered considerably over the years shown in the table, the values given in column (2) for later years give only a broad indication of the changes in internal purchasing power since 1946.

    (1)(2)
    per cent
    1947-6·4£1·07
    1948-7·1£1·15
    1949-2·3£1·18
    1950-2·8£1·21
    1951-8·2£1·32
    1952-5·8£1·40
    1953-1·7£1·43
    1954-1·6£1·45
    1955-3·4£1·50
    1956-4·1£1·56
    1957-3·2£1·62
    1958-2·7£1·66
    1959-0·6£1·67
    1960-1·0£1·69
    1961-2·7£1·73
    1962-3·8£1·80
    1963-1·9£1·84
    1964-3·2£1·90
    1965-4·5£1·99
    1966-3·8£2·06
    1967-2·6£2·12
    1968-4·4£2·22
    1969-5·1£2·34
    1970-6·0£2·49
    1971-8·6£2·72
    1972-6·7£2·91
    1973-8·3£3·18
    1974-13·8£3·69
    1975-19·5£4·59
    1976-14·2£5·34

    Gross Domestic Product And Personal Incomes

    asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer (1) if he will publish in the Official Report a table showing the percentage increase or decrease in gross domestic product at constant 1970 prices and at factor cost in each year since 1945;(2) if he will publish in the

    Official Report a table showing the percentage increase or decrease in personal disposable income per capita in terms of 1970 prices for each year since 1945.

    Estimates of the gross demestic product at factor cost and personal disposable income at constant 1970 prices are not available for years before 1948. The figures for the period from 1949 to 1955 are given below. Cor- responding figures for the period 1956 to 1976 are given on pages 126 and 128 of the October 1977 issue of Economic Trends.

    PERCENTAGE CHANGE OVER PRECEDING YEAR AT CONSTANT PRICES
    Gross domestic product at factor cost (average estimate)Personal disposable income per capita
    1949+3·7+2·2
    1950+3·2+0·6
    1951+2·7+0·8
    1952-0·2+1·1
    1953+4·0+4·7
    1954+4·0+2·9
    1955+3·7+4·4

    Customs (United Kingdom-Irish Republic)

    asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer what representations he has received from tourist and other organisations and bodies regarding the introduction of duty-free facilities for passengers travelling between the United Kingdom and the Republic of Ireland.

    Such representations are made from time to time. Most recently, in October this year, the British Tourist Authority sent to the Commissioners of Customs and Excise a statement of the case as they see it for the introduction of duty-free facilities on all routes between Great Britain and the Republic of Ireland.

    asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer what discussions have taken place with the Government of the Republic of Ireland regarding the introduction of duty-free facilities for passengers travelling between the United Kingdom and the Republic.

    Together with the Minister for Finance in the Republic of Ireland, I have authorised a joint study by officials in the two countries to assess the implications of a change of practice in this field. We expect to have a report in a matter of weeks, and shall then jointly consider any further action.

    Travel Expenses

    asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer if, in the light of the proposed increases in commuters' fares, he will reconsider the possibility of allowing esential travel to work fares to be offset against tax.

    I do not think it would be right to single out this particular form of expenditure for tax relief.

    European Finance Ministers (Meeting)

    asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer if he will list the meetings of the EEC Finance Meetings so far in the current year together with the subjects discussed at each; what subjects will be discussed at the forthcoming meeting on 21st November; and if he will make a statement to the House upon his return from that meeting.

    The information requested by the hon. Member is below. I intend to inform the House of the outcome of the November Council.

    Following is the information:

    14th February

    • Economic situation in the Community.
    • Work programme for the Finance Council during the UK Presidency.

    14th March

    • Economic situation in the Community.
    • Fourth medium-term economic policy programme.
    • Increased internal coherence in economic and financial matters.
    • Preparation for the next meeting of the IMF Interim Committee.
    • Conference on International Economic Cooperation: financial aspects.
    • Export credits.

    18th April

    • Preparation for the meeting of the IMF Interim Committee.
    • Follow-up to the meeting of the European Council in Rome: Tripartite Conference.
    • Community loan for Italy.
    • Economic and financial issues likely to be raised at the Downing Street Summit.
    • Conference on International Economic Cooperation: Common Fund.

    20th June

    • Tripartite Conference.
    • Follow-up to the Downing Street Summit.
    • Excise duties on tobacco.
    • Draft Directive on credit institutions.

    18th July

    • Work programme for Finance Council during the Belgian Presidency.
    • Economic situation in the Community.
    • Follow-up to the London meeting of the European Council on 29th to 30th June 1977.

    19th September

    • Preparation for the annual meetings of the IMF and the World Bank.
    • Economic situation in the Community.

    17th October

    • General exchange of views on the economic policy to be followed by the member States.
    • Adjustments of short and medium-term credit mechanisms.
    • Communication from the Commission on investment and borrowing in the Community.
    • Revision of IMF quotas.

    21st November

    • Economic situation in the Community and the adoption of economic policy guidelines for 1978.
    • Improvement of economic policy coordination.
    • The Presidency's proposals for adjustment of the Community short and medium-term support facilities.
    • Commission proposals for a new Community borrowing facility.
    • Draft Banking Co-ordination Directive.

    Public Expenditure

    asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer if, following the speech in the United States of America on 17th October 1977 in which the Secretary of State for Defence sought to explain the British Government's repeated unilateral defence cuts as being caused by the necessity for defence to bear its share of the cutbacks in public expenditure which events have forced upon the United Kingdom, he will now list in the Official Report the percentage by which in the year 1978–79 public expenditure will have been cut in real terms compared to 1974 forecast expenditure in respect of defence in comparison with each other Department of Government.

    Construction Industry

    asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer what changes have been made to cash limits covering capital expenditure on construction in 1977–78 as a result of the various measures to assist the construction industry announced by the Government this year.

    Expenditure measures designed to assist the construction industry in 1977–78 were announced by the Chancellor on 29th March and 15th July, and by the Minister for Housing and Construction and the Secretaries of State for Wales and Scotland on 2nd May, 20th June and 30th June respectively. In total these measures amount to £236·6 million at current prices, of which part, relating to the expenditure on

    £ million
    New BlockDescriptionCash limit
    DOE/LA6Inner Cities construction expenditure10·9
    WO/LA5Inner Cities construction expenditure1·2
    £ million
    Existing BlockDescriptionChangeRevised cash limit
    DES5Science budget+0·5252·8
    DOE2Various central and miscellaneous services12·1156·5*
    DHSS2Health and personal social services: England+10·04,429·9
    DAFS1Agricultural services and fisheries support: Scotland+0·131·9
    SED1Schools, etc.: Scotland+0·257·1
    SHHD1Health: Scotland+1·0631·3
    SHHD2Law, order and protective services: Scotland+0·112·1
    WO2Motorways, trunk roads and other roads expenditure: Wales+0·571·8
    WO3Other environmental services: Wales+0·33·8
    WO4Libraries, museums, galleries and other arts: Wales+0·23·9
    WO5Health and personal social services: Wales+1·7270·4
    DES/LA1Education building+10·4158·3
    DOE/LA2Housing: England+66·52,217·8
    DHSS/LA1Capital projects for personal social services: England+2·031·4
    DTP/LA1Capital expenditure on roads: England and Wales+3·565·4
    SO/LA1Capital expenditure on roads and other transport: Scotland+0·789·7
    SO/LA2Capital expenditure on other environmental services, etc.: Scotland+7·6135·9
    SDD/LA1Housing: Scotland+6·7318·9
    SED/LA1School building: Scotland+1·161·9
    SED/LA2Capital expenditure, social work: Scotland+0·47·9
    WO/LA1Housing: Wales+3·7115·3
    WO/LA3School building: Wales+0·85·9
    WO/LA4Capital projects for personal social services: Wales+0·42·0
    WO/LAW1Community land scheme: Wales+0·14·0
    Total142·7
    * Includes £2·3 million reflecting: an addition of £0·5 million made from the contingency reserve to the funds available to the Development Commission; £1·5 million to institute a National Dwellings and Housing Survey—[Official Report, 6th July] and £0·3 million for the transfer of responsibility for research on the urban programme from the Home Office to the Department of the Environment—[Official Report, 6th April]. Cash block HO2 has been correspondingly reduced by £0·3 million to £137·8 million.

    Widowed Mothers

    asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer what is the net gain for a widow with one, two, three and four children, respectively, subject to the standard rate of income tax resulting from the proposed child benefit increases in April 1978 and the corresponding changes in taxation of dependency allowances which he announced on 26th October; and how this compares with the net gain for a married couple with one child also paying the standard rate of tax.

    inner cities, will fall in 1978–79. Two new cash blocks have been created for the expenditure on inner cities in England and Wales; the corresponding expenditure in Scotland is being included within existing cash blocks. The resulting changes to cash limits are as follows:

    1977; Vol. 938, c. 189–90], gave the following information:

    The net gain per week resulting from the increase in child benefit and reduction of child tax allowance in 1978–79 compared with 1977–78 for a married couple with one child paying tax at the basic rate will be 67p a week. In order to ensure that widows who are liable to tax, and who are in receipt of taxable child dependency allowances-which are reduced to take account of child benefit—are not worse off in April 1978 as a result of the further reduction in child tax allowances, it is proposed, as announced on 26th October, to exempt in 1978–79 £80 of the dependency allowance. This will leave widows with one or more children neither better nor worse off in April 1978 as a result of the proposed changes.

    Personal Allowances

    asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer what was the total cash value for each year since 1965–66 of personal tax allowances, child tax allowances, and family allowances or child benefit for a married couple with one, two, three and four children, respectively, paying the standard rate of tax and with

    Cash value of tax allowances and family allowance/child benefit for a family paying tax at the basic rate with
    Year1 child2 children3 children4 children
    ££££
    1965–66187·69249·26314·35379·44
    1966–67187·69249·26314·35379·44
    1967–68187·69249·26314·35383·52
    1968–69187·69249·42314·66379·92
    1969–70202·13264·02329·45394·88
    1970–71239·25301·15366·58432·00
    1971–72240·25316·73396·85476·97
    1972–73292·56369·05449·16529·28
    1973–74292·50367·26445·66524·06
    1974–75364·65458·05554·93651·81
    1975–76418·25534·75651·25767·75
    1976–77484·75622·25759·75897·25
    1977–78613·34749·14884·941,020·74
    1978–79648·30801·90955·501,109·10
    The figures for years from 1968–69 to 1976–77 take account of the effects of the Family Allowance Deduction ("claw-back") as well as tax on the Family allowance.For 1977–78 the figures are based on the Chancellor's proposals of 26th October.For 1978–79 it has been assumed that the weekly rate of child benefits is increased to £2·30 and that child tax allowances for children aged not over 11 are reduced to £100. It has also been assumed that the basic rate of income tax remains at 34 per cent., and that the married person's tax allowance is £1,455.

    Mortgages

    asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer what is the average tax relief granted to owner-occupiers purchasing their homes on mortgages in Scotland and the United Kingdom, respectively; and what is the total amount of relief granted for both Scotland and the United Kingdom.

    only the husband working; and what will be the cash value of such allowances and benefits in 1977–78 and 1978–79 assuming that the current proposals for child benefit increases are implemented and that there are no further charges in tax rates or allowances.

    , pursuant to his reply [Official Report, 10th November 1977; Vol. 938, c. 184–5], gave the following information:Assuming that the children are all under 11 years of age the figures are as follows:

    , pursuant to his reply [Official Report, 10th November 1977; Vol. 938, c. 191–2], gave the following information:The total tax relief on mortgage in-interest for 1977–78 is estimated at £1,070 million taking into account the recent reduction in the rates charged by building societies but on the assumption that rates do not change again thereafter. About £45 million of this relates to Scotland. The average relief per mortgagor is about £175 for the United Kingdom and £150 for Scotland.

    Family Allowances

    asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer what is the value of child tax allowances and family allowances/child benefit payments to one-, two-, and four-child families expressed as a percentage of (a) gross, and (b) net average earnings in 1964, 1968, 1970 and each subsequent year, respectively.

    , pursuant to his reply [Official Report, 11th November 1977; Vol. 938, c. 271], gave the following information:

    (a) Value of child tax allowances and family allowances/child benefits as percentage of gross income for:—(b) Value of child tax allowances and family allowances/child benefits as percentage of income after tax for:—
    Yearone-child familytwo-child familyfour-child familyone-child familytwo-child familyfour-child family
    %%%%%%
    1964–654·59·618·54·910·118·5
    1968–694·08·818·04·69·919·4
    1970–712·96·513·53·57·815·6
    1971–723·37·415·14·08·617·0
    1972–732·96·513·53·57·615·2
    1973–742·65·711·83·16·713·5
    1974–752·86·012·33·57·414·4
    1975–762·45·711·83·27·214·4
    1976–772·76·112·53·57·715·0
    1977–782·85·911·83·57·314·0
    The figures for years from 1968–69 to 1967–77 take account of the effects of the Family Allowance Deduction ("claw-back") as well as tax on the family allowance.The figures of gross income and income after tax include family allowance and child benefits as appropriate.Average earnings for 1964–65 and 1968–69 are the Department of Employment's estimates of the average earnings of full-time male manual workers in October of each year. For the years 1970–71 to 1976–77 the figures used are the averages of the New Earnings Survey estimates for April at the start and finish of each income tax year. These cover the earnings of full-time adult males in all occupations, manual and non-manual. In 1977–78 the April 1977 NES figure has been updated to August 1977, the latest month available, by the monthly index of average earnings.For 1977–78 the figures take account of the Chancellor's proposals of 26th October.

    Finance Houses And Fringe Banks

    asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer whether he will estimate the total value of the assets held by financial companies; and what proportion of those assets consists of foreign currency securities, foreign currencies or property abroad.

    , pursuant to his reply [Official Report, 15th November 1977; Vol. 939, c. 192], gave the following information:

    Assuming that the children are all under 11 years of age the figures are as follows:

    The total value of assets of banks in the United Kingdom at 21st September 1977 was £187,452 millions* of which 65 per cent. was denominated in foreign currencies. I regret that information on the total value of assets of other financial companies and institutions is incomplete and does not distinguish assets denominated in foreign currencies. Much of the foreign currency assets of the banks represents lending in the Eurodollar market which is matched by foreign currency liabilities.

    * Source: Financial Statistics October 1977 Table 6.9.

    Education And Science

    Deaf Children

    asked the Secretary of State for Education and Science (1) what representations she has received against the closure of the Royal School for the Deaf at Martley, near Worcester; and to what extent such closure will reduce the facilities available for the education of deaf children in the West Midlands area;(2) what proposals she has for providing alternative facilities for the education of deaf children in the event of the closure of Martley School, near Worcester.

    My Department has received only one objection to the proposed closure of the premises at Martley. The capacity of the Royal School for the Deaf, Birmingham, will thereby be reduced by 30 places and the school will cease to admit children below the age of six. The Edgbaston premises will remain open and most of the children from Martley will transfer to these premises. The closure is justified by falling demand and my right hon. Friend is satisfied that sufficient places for future needs already exist at other special schools and in units attached to ordinary schools in the area.

    School Examinations (Passes)

    asked the Secretary of State for Education and Science if she will list for each of the last three years the number

    SCHOOL LEAVERS BY NUMBER OF GCE O* LEVELS AS PERCENTAGE OF ALL LEAVERS (ENGLAND ONLY)
    Number of O levels Grade C or better or CSEs Grade I197419751976
    Number of leaversAs a percentage of all leaversNumber of leaversAs a percentage of all leaversNumber of leaversAs a percentage of all leavers
    1–2107,11017114,96618119,46918
    3–456,980958,382960,6409
    5 or more148,34023147,53323152,64923
    All leavers641,800100651,708100666,588100
    * Includes CSE grade I.

    asked the Secretary of State for Education and Science if she will list for 1976 the number of entrants for GCE O-level in England in the 12 most popular subjects and the number and percentages who obtained grades A and B and C passes in each of these subjects.

    The number of GCE O level entrants from England

    GCE "O" LEVEL 1976—ENGLAND AND WALES
    Entries and Grades A—C awarded in the 12 Most Popular Subjects
    Grade AAwarded Grade BGrade C
    SubjectEntriesNumberPercentage of entriesNumberPercentage of entriesNumberPercentage of entries
    1. English Language452,17942,395996,11321130,74429
    2. Mathematics270,29728,6291156,9742171,87327
    3. English Literature248,48523,345952,2412170,65528
    4. Biology209,55921,5161044,3092152,36825
    5. Geography188,76517,058937,4262048,31826
    6. French152,45917,0681135,0082338,81625
    7. History149,24217,9521232,7372234,40223
    8. Physics137,92914,5771130,5362236,28226
    9. Art112,4229,576926,2422337,29833
    10. Chemistry112,22112,4441126,0652329,84527
    11. Economics64,0645,039812,9382014,81923
    12. Religious Knowledge63,7176,7711113,4942116,67726

    asked the Secretary of State for Education and Science if she will list for each of the last three years the number of entrants in England for A level GCE in the 12 most popular subjects and the number and percentage who obtained passes in each subject.

    of school leavers in England with one, two, three, four, five, six, seven, eight, nine and ten O-level GCE passes at Grade C or better, or CSE equivalent; and if she will express these figures as a percentage of total school leavers.

    This information is not available in precisely the form requested. However, the following table shows for 1974 to 1976 the available information on the number of school leavers in England with GCE O levels grade C or better or CSE grade I:and Wales in 1976 in the 12 most popular subjects and those gaining grades A, B and C are given below. These statistics are derived from summaries supplied by the GCE examination boards, which do not identify the area of residence of the candidate. These statistics include candidates from further education establishments and those privately entered as well as from schools.

    Entries and passes in the summer 1976 GCE A level examinations for England and Wales for the 12 most popular subjects are given below. These statistics are derived from examination board returns which do not identify the area of residence of the candidate.The statistics cover further education establishments and privately entered candidates as well as schools.

    GCE A LEVEL EXAMINATIONS SUMMER 1976—ENGLAND AND WALES ENTRIES AND PASSES IN THE 12 MOST POPULAR SUBJECTS
    Number of entriesNumber of passesAs percentage of entries
    English65,98546,44670·39
    Physics41,80329,16369·76
    Pure and Applied* Mathematics38,88626,49668·14
    History37,89126,87070·91
    Geography37,00425,52868·99
    Economics35,45123,46266·18
    Chemistry34,55824,50870·92
    Biology32,06621,79167·96
    General Studies30,11322,33374·16
    Art24,82917,15469·09
    French24,11117,25271·55
    Pure Mathematics*18,8539,82052·09
    * 4,116 persons taking pure mathematics and applied mathematics (single subjects) were each awarded a single "compensatory" pass. The entries are included under those for pure mathematics, but the passes are in addition to those shown for pure and applied mathematics (single subject).

    English Language

    asked the Secretary of State for Education and Science what estimate she has made of the number of foreign students studying English language courses in the United Kingdom in, respectively, colleges recognised by her Department, and colleges not recognised by her Department; and how many colleges there are for teaching English not recognised by her Department.

    In 1976–77 in England and Wales there were some 9,500 full-time and 800 part-time foreign students taking English language courses in independent colleges recognised as efficient by the Secretary of State. My Department does not collect information about the numbers of such students or colleges in the remainder of the independent sector. The position in Scotland is a matter for my right hon. Friend the Secretary of State for Scotland.

    Expenditure

    asked the Secretary of State for Education and Science if she will announce the allocations for schools and for higher and further education from her Department's share of the additional expenditure on construction in 1978–79 announced by the Chancellor of the Exchequer on 26th October.

    Comparable statistics for 1974 and 1975 are published in Table 31 of Volume 2, Statistics of Education, copies of which are in the Library.

    My Department's share of the additional expenditure on the construction industry in 1978–79 is £26 million. I am allocating £9 million for capital projects in schools, £5·5 million for further education colleges and polytechnics and £4·5 million for universities.The additional expenditure authorisation for schools will enable authorities to start new projects to the value of £21 million. About £17 million will be earmarked for a special programme to assist the reorganisation of secondary education on comprehensive lines, £2·5 million for special schools and the remainder for other improvements, including a further modest expansion of nursery education.In further education, the extra expenditure authorisation will provide more help for authorities in meeting the demand for additional places in non-advanced further education in connection with the Government's programme for the young unemployed; and will also provide for a small increase in the resources allocated to polytechnics.The £4·5 million allocated to the university sector will be used mainly for the modernisation and adaptation of existing buildings.

    Science

    asked the Secretary of State for Education and Science if she will make an allocation to science from her Department's share of the additional expenditure on construction in 1978–79 announced by the Chancellor of the Exchequer on 26th October.

    I have allocated £4 million to the science budget to be spent on new capital work in 1978–79 and expect very shortly to settle the precise distribution between the recipients. This sum is additional to the £4 million increase in the science budget for 1978–79 which I announced recently.

    The Arts

    asked the Secretary of State for Education and Science if she will make an allocation to the arts from her Department's share of the additional expenditure on construction in 1978–79 announced by the Chancellor of the Exchequer on 26th October.

    I have allocated £3 million to the arts programme for the construction projects in 1978–79. Apart from small projects for the arts and for the British Library, most of the extra resources will be made available for maintenance and improvements to the buildings of the national museums and galleries. In particular, this will enable a self-contained instalment of the National

    CIRCULARS AND LETTERS
    ReferenceSubjectDate of issue
    CLS/1/75Land Acquisition and Management Schemes6.10.1975
    SDD Circular 114/75Certificates of Appropriate Alternative Development21.11.1975
    SDD Circular 116/75 (CLS/2/75)General Introductory Circular1.12.1975
    SDD Circular 115/75Community Land Accounts 1975–7624.12.1975
    SDD Circular 2/76Commercial Property Development and the Community Land Scheme14.1.1976
    SDD Circular 11/76 (CLS/3)Glossary of Land Scheme Terms13.2.1976
    SDD Circular 17/76 (CLS/4)Planning Applications and Permissions for Relevant Development10.3.1976
    SDD Circular 19/76 (CLS/5)Scope of Acquisition Powers and Duties26.3.1976
    SDD Circular 22/76 (CLS/6)Land Acquisition and Management Schemes29.3.1976
    SDD Circular 26/76 (CLS/7)Acquisition of Land for Private Development23.4.1976
    SDD Circular 27/76 (CLS/8)Scope of Acquisition Powers and Duties: Policy on Use of the Acquisition Powers28.6.1976
    LetterCommunity Land Scheme and Development Land Tax18.5.1976
    LetterDevelopment Land Tax: Exemption for Projects started before the Appointed Day26.5.1976
    SDD Circular 42/76 (CLS/9)Compulsory Purchase Procedures18.5.1976
    SDD Circular 43/76 (CLS/10)Register of Land Holdings22.6.1976
    SDD Circular 45/76Disposal Notification Areas1.7.1976

    Gallery East Wing improvement scheme to be carried out next year.

    Scotland

    Fire Service (Dispute)

    asked the Secretary of State for Scotland what has been the cost of issuing notices and advertisements by his Department, and all related costs, regarding fire precautions during the firemen's strike.

    Press, radio and television advertising and the production and distribution of Press notices and posters advising the public of fire safety precautions and of what to do in the event of fire during the current dispute has so far cost about £30,000.

    Community Land

    asked the Secretary of State for Scotland whether he will list by name and reference number all published circulars, guidance notes, design bulletins or other official communications which he has sent to local authorities or new town corporations about the Community Land Act 1975, giving the date of publication in each case.

    CIRCULARS AND LETTERS—cont.

    Reference(CLS/11)

    Subject

    Date of issue

    SDD Circular 50/76 (CLS/12)Prescribed Forms29.7.1976
    SDD Circular 57/76Town and Country Planning (General Development) (Scotland) Amendment No. 2 Order 197624.8.1976
    SDD Circular 58/76 (CLS/13)Disposal of Land for Private Development24.8.1976
    SDD Circular 62/76 (CLS/14)Intra-Public Sector Transactions30.9.1976
    SDD Circular 63/76The Compulsory Purchase by Public Authorities (Inquiries Procedure) (Scotland) Rules 19766.10.1976
    SDD Circular 74/76Town and Country Planning (General) (Scotland) Regulations 197613.12.1976
    SDD Circular 75/76 (CLS/15)Directions to Keep Accounts23.12.1976
    SDD Circular 1/77Intra-Public Sector Transactions14.1.1977
    SDD Circular 3/77 (CLS/16)Effect of Public Expenditure Cuts28.1.1977
    LetterCommunity Land Surplus Account6.5.1977
    LetterCommunity Land Scheme: Housing Land10.6.1977
    SDD Circular 29/77Community Land Scheme: Supplementary Information27.6.1977

    PUBLICITY BOOKLETS
    The Community Land Scheme in Scotland: Planning Applications and Permissions for Relevant Development29.10.1976
    The Community Land Scheme in Scotland: Disposal Notification Areas29.10.1976

    asked the Secretary of State for Scotland whether any local authorities have yet sent him, as required by paragraph 2(1) of Schedule 8 to the Community Land Act 1975, copies of resolutions declaring disposal notification areas; if so, which were the authorities concerned; what are the names of the areas contained in those resolutions; and from what date or dates the resolutions became operative.