asked the Secretary of State for the Environment, in pursuance of the speech of the Minister for Local Government and Environmental Services on 5 February, what options he is considering in pursuance of his objective of abolishing the domestic rates; when his review of this matter commenced and when it will be completed; how many officials of his Department are assisting in the review; if he will list any persons outside the Department involved in the review; and if he will specify its terms of reference.
While there are no formal terms of reference, the review is examining all the possible options for replacing domestic rates. It is too soon to say when the review will be completed. A number of officials are involved as part of their normal duties. No persons outside the Government are involved in this review.