asked the Minister of Transport why correspondence and telephone calls to his Department's Harrogate office from surveyors Wells, Cundall of Malton, over the period January 1979 to June under reference HM37/5069/0337 have not received a substantive reply; and if he will make a statement.
A large number of claims have been submitted by these surveyors. As long ago as 1976 the district valuer advised them that a number of items appeared to be the liability of an independent contractor and not of the Department at all. Unfortunately, the information supplied up to early June of this year proved inadequate to enable the Department to determine the extent, if any, to which payment may be due from public funds. The position is being reviewed in the light of additional information supplied on 12 June, but this may take a little time as the information supplied is still sparse and the events referred to occurred over six years ago. Unless the Department can be provided with evidence which satisfies us that payment is due from public funds we cannot pay any compensation.