§ Order for Third Reading read.
§ Motion made, and Question proposed, "That the Bill be now read the third time."
§ Mr. WHELER
In reference to the Clause which has been accepted enabling tobacco to be grown in this country, the House is aware that the object of the Clause is to get cheap nicotine for agricultural and horticultural purposes. The Clause has been promised subject to Regulations to be issued by the Treasury, so that the tobacco grown for the purposes referred to can be distinguished from the tobacco used for any other purposes. We have been experimenting in reference to this. We have and shall have during the autumn tobacco in a dried state variously experimented on, and we would ask the Chancellor that he should give us active assistance from his officials, so that the Clause may become an operative Clause and we may be able to grow tobacco next year. Our experiments have been going on for the last two years, and if we can have the active assistance of the Treasury officials I think we shall be able to obtain what we want.
§ The CHANCELLOR of the EXCHEQUER (Mr. Lloyd George)
I have been in communication with the hon. Gentleman for some time on this question, 3205 and, as he knows, I entirely accept his attitude. Whatever assistance the Treasury can afford for this purpose will be very gladly given.
§ Mr. DUKE
May I draw attention to the fact that some of the county councils are put in a position of much disadvantage with regard to local licences by reason of the appointment, under the Finance Act of 1910, of the year 1908–9 as the governing year which decides the apportionment of the Licence Duties between the funds under the control of the county councils and the funds which go to the Road Improvement Board. The county council in Devon, for instance, finds itself deprived of several thousand pounds which in ordinary circumstances would have come to it, not arising from the increase of Motor Duties, but from duties on traps and to some extent from the greater vigilance of the county councils and the local authorities. I think that the matter has been mentioned to the Treasury on one or two occasions, and I should be glad if the right hon. Gentleman would look into it and see whether there has not been a substantial breach of the pledge given that the county councils should not suffer by the method of distribution. I am sure that this matter will be regarded as non-contentious and that the right hon. Gentleman will probably see his way to do what is desired.
§ Mr. LLOYD GEORGE
I shall certainly look into the matter. I know the point to which the hon. Gentleman refers.
Question put, and agreed to.
Bill read the third time, and passed.