HC Deb 17 February 1915 vol 69 cc1235-6

Order for Second Reading read.

Motion made, and Question proposed, "That the Bill be now read a second time."


I notice that in Clause 21 of this Bill power is taken to raise additional capital not exceeding £250,000. I should like to ask, if this Bill is passed, whether it will require Treasury sanction? We have already passed measures in this House to the effect that no issue of capital will be allowed to any company except such as the Treasury sanction, and they have set up a Committee which is dealing with these applications from day to day. I wish to know whether this company will require Treasury sanction or whether the passing of this Bill will be sufficient. Many companies established by Act of Parliament prior to the legislation which set up Treasury control will have to come under the Treasury, and I would like to know whether this company will be in a different position, and whether it can proceed at any time without having to go before the Treasury at all. In that case we might find a number of companies applying for capital when it is not in the interests of the State.


If this is a capital expenditure of £250,000 for waterworks purposes, the expenditure will not be incurred at least for two or three years, or any portion of it, and even when incurred it will be spread over eight or ten years during the progress of the works, and therefore the whole of this capital will not be raised at once.


I am much obliged to the hon. Member for Pontefract for raising this question. The Treasury have already informed me that they are closely watching private Bills this Session, and that they will draw my attention to any matters in which in the public interest they ought to intervene. I think that will satisfy my hon. Friend.


Will they draw the right hon. Gentleman's attention to the matter before the Committee sits or afterwards? I think they ought to undertake to draw attention to the matter as soon as the Bill goes to the Second Reading.


If it is a matter of the whole Bill, they will draw attention to it before the Second Reading; but if it is only a matter of some Clauses, then they will draw attention to it before the Bill proceeds to Committee.

Question put, and agreed to.

Bill read a second time, and referred to the Examiners of Petitions for Private Bills.