HC Deb 06 July 1920 vol 131 cc1229-30
66. Commander BELLAIRS

asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer, in view of the fact that railway passengers pay Income Tax on such income as they spend on travelling, whether he can state if railway directors and officials who are given free railway passes are assessed for Income Tax on the value of their free passes?


Under the present Income Tax law remuneration or allowances in kind are not treated as the income of the recipient unless capable of being turned into money.

67. Commander BELLAIRS

asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer whether he is aware that many railway directors and officials are given free railway passes on all the railways of the United Kingdom, including those quite unconnected with their work; whether he can say if this privilege extends to the 50 per cent. increase in fares made during the War by the Government; and, if so, whether he can state the grounds on which such a special favour was conferred?


I have been asked to answer this question. I can add nothing to the reply given to the hon. and gallant Member on the 1st instant.

Commander BELLAIRS

Is the right hon. Gentleman aware that these passes have been considerably extended during the War; that they are much more valuable now; that they are given to the families of officials as well and that if a shareholder—since putting down the question, I have had a letter from a shareholder—complains to the manager of a railway, he is informed that it has to do with the Government? If that is so, why does not the Government deal with the matter?


I am not aware of the facts mentioned by the hon. Member, but if he will give me any instances where these passes have been issued to members of the families of directors or officials, I should be very glad to look into it.


Is the hon. Member aware that every free pass given to a railway official comes out of the pockets of the British taxpayer?