MR. GIBSON BOWLES
I beg to ask Mr. Chancellor of the Exchequer can he state the total amount of money expended in contributions out of Imperial taxation in relief of local taxation during the year ending 31st March, 1899, and how much of that amount was provided respectively out of the general revenue paid into the Exchequer, and out of assigned revenues not paid into the Exchequer, but intercepted and paid directly to the local taxation account; whether he has taken into consideration that the revenues intercepted and paid directly to the local taxation account escape that annual control and supervision of Parliament which is extended to the expenditure met out of revenue paid into the Exchequer; and whether, during the Recess, he will consider the advisability of bringing the expenditure of such assigned and intercepted revenues under the control and supervision of Parliament by such an alteration in the law as would secure that in future these revenues shall cease to be intercepted and shall be paid into the Exchequer, in conformity with Section 10 of the Exchequer and Audit Act, 1866, and included in the public accounts of revenue and expenditure.
§ THE CHANCELLOR OF THE EXCHEQUER (Sir M. HICKS BEACH,) Bristol, W.
The total amount expended in contributions out of Imperial taxation in relief of local taxation during the year ending 31st of March, 1899, was £13,267,895,of which £3,746,735 was provided out of general revenues paid into the Exchequer, and £9,521,160 out of assigned revenues not paid into the Exchequer. I think the statement in the second paragraph of the question is too broad; and I do not propose to make any alteration of principle in the arrangements by which local taxation is relieved out of the public revenues of the country pending the Report of the Local Taxation Commission.
§ MR. J. H. LEWIS (Flint Boroughs)
Can the right hon. Gentleman say what is the "annual control and supervision of Parliament" referred to in the second paragraph of the question?
§ SIR M. HICKS BEACH
It is not for me to interpret the question. You had better ask the hon. Member for King's Lynn.