§ Any person using motor spirit for the purpose of supplying motive power to any motor ambulance when used as such shall be entitled to an allowance or repayment of the duty paid in respect of the motor spirit in the same manner as a person using motor spirit for purposes other than the supply of motive power for motor cars.
§ Clause brought up, and read the first time.
§ Mr. MONTAGU
I beg to move, "That the Clause be read a second time."
I do not think that this is a controversial Clause. It relates to spirits, but only 1684 to motor spirit. I move it on behalf of the Chancellor of the Exchequer in order to carry out a pledge given in this House on the 16th April, 1913. There is a Clause on the Paper in the name of the hon. Member for Paddington (Mr. Percy Harris) dealing with the same subject. Our Clause does exactly what the hon. Member's does, but it avoids a practice which many Members of this House dislike if it can be avoided, namely, legislation by reference. At the present moment motor fire engines are exempted not only from Motor Licence Duty, but also from Motor Spirit Duty. Motor ambulances are exempted from Motor Licence Duty, but they have never been exempted from the duty on motor spirit. This Clause is to put them in this respect on the same footing as motor fire engines.
§ Mr. WATT
Will the right hon. Gentleman say whether the Treasury have considered the wisdom or otherwise of exempting from the Spirit Duty motor cars used professionally by veterinary surgeons? Members of the medical profession were exempted under the original proposal, but veterinary surgeons were not. I have had numerous representations from veterinary surgeons that the exemption enjoyed by the medical profession should be extended to them. The exemption is being extended by this new Clause, and I wish the Secretary to the Treasury to say whether the Treasury, after consideration, have come to the conclusion that these gentlemen should be excluded from the advantage of this exemption. Personally, I think veterinary surgeons should get the same exemption as members of the medical profession. Apparently the Treasury have taken the other view. Having entered my protest, I hope that on a future occasion veterinary surgeons will be considered.
§ Mr. MONTAGU
I am much obliged to my hon. Friend for his remarks. This Clause does not refer to motor cars, whether belonging to doctors or to veterinary surgeons, but only to motor ambulances.
§ Question put, and agreed to.
§ Clause read a second time, and added to the Bill.