HC Deb 25 July 1898 vol 62 cc1154-5

I beg to ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer whether he is aware that under the Rating Act the Treasury undertakes to pay half the poor rate on land, and that for the parish of Asheldham, Essex, the half amounts to £19, half-yearly; and why it is that only £9 10s. has been received instead of £19?


In reply to the honourable Member's (Question as to the discrepancy between £19 and £9 10s., the £9 10s. does not take into account the share of the parish of Asheldham in the grant paid to the county council, although the charge for county rate is included in the £19. Again, the poor rate in the parish for the year is not the same in each half-year. It is higher during the current half-year than it was in the last half-year. The grant, on the other hand, is a fixed one, based upon the rates taken to be raised in the year before the passing of the Agricultural Rates Act, and it is paid twice a year in equal instalments. Further, the grant being a fixed one, any increase in expenditure falling on the parish since the 31st March, 1896, has to be paid in full without aid from the grant. For instance, there was an increase in the expenditure of the guardians for the union of £395, and of the rural district of £966, of which the parish of Asheldham has to bear its share. It is also to be remembered that there is no grant in respect of the overseers. The honourable Member will find, I think, that in this way the discrepancy is practically accounted for.