asked the Secretary of State for the Environment why vacant listed buildings are exempt from the discretionary rating of empty buildings under the General Rate Act 1967; and whether he will introduce legislation to remove the exemption.
Listed buildings are sometimes difficult to dispose of, and it may therefore take some time to bring an empty listed building back into occupation. When the empty rating provisions of the General Rate Act 1967 were enacted it was therefore thought right to exempt the owners of listed buildings. I have no plans at present to change this statutory exemption.
asked the Secretary of State for the Environment what sums of money were spent in each of the last five years on the preservation of listed buildings.
I shall write to my right hon. Friend shortly.