HC Deb 24 June 1920 vol 130 cc2374-5
76. Mr. GWYNNE

asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer whether his attention has been called to the fact that under Section 88 of the Finance Act, 1909–10, the amount receivable by counties or county boroughs in respect of motor licences, which forms part of the assigned revenue under the 1888 Act, was fixed at the amount received in the area during the financial year ended 31st March, 1909, notwithstanding what amount may have been collected in the area; whether he is aware that the sum paid over under this scheme to the county borough of Eastbourne amounts to £1,079 per annum, whereas during the last year, £2,625 was actually collected in the county borough and what steps he proposes to take under the Finance Bill to adjust this state of affairs?


Under the provisions of the Finance Act, the benefit of the increased duties on motor cars imposed in 1910, accrues to the Exchequer for the Road Fund, and not to the local authorities. I am not prepared to alter the law in this respect, particularly at a time when I am proposing to make largely increased grants from the proceeds of motor taxes for roads, and to retain no benefit from these taxes for the Exchequer.


Will the right hon. Gentleman say how the local authorities are to get that money?


That question is answered by the Ministry of Transport.

77. Mr. GWYNNE

asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer whether, under the present proposals of the Finance Bill, it is intended to issue quarterly, half-yearly, and yearly motor licences; whether he is aware that this will increase the inquiry and clerical work of counties and county boroughs; and, in view of the Treasury grant falling short of carrying out the work in certain cases, what steps he is proposing to take to remedy this, and so avoid throwing further burdens on the ratepayers?


I have been asked to reply to this question. It is proposed to issue quarterly licences, as set out in Clause 12 (2) of the Finance Bill. I am aware that this will increase the administrative work devolving upon County Councils and County Borough Councils. It is the intention of the Government that the whole of the costs, reasonably and necessarily incurred by County Councils and County Borough Councils in the levy and collection of the duties, shall be defrayed out of the proceeds of the duties. The administrative cost of collecting the proposed new tax will be proportionately very much less than that of collecting the old taxes.


What is to be the price of quarterly licences?