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Volume 982: debated on Wednesday 16 April 1980

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asked the Secretary of State for the Environment when he will be in a position to announce whether Walsall is to be designated under the Inner Urban Areas Act.

The basis for the selection of districts for designation under the Inner Urban Areas Act is still under consideration.

annum in water rates; and what action he proposes to take to ensure that water rating authorities follow the Government's policy of controlling inflation.

I have received the hon. Member's letter and will reply shortly. The average increase in a domestic consumer's water services bill in the Anglian Water Authority area for 1980–81 over 1979–80 is 26·6 per cent. not 500 per cent. My right hon. Friend the Minister for Local Government and Environmental Services has been impressing on all water authorities the need to exercise straight economies in their expenditure.