HC Deb 13 March 1924 vol 170 cc2554-5
103. Mr. W. THORNE

asked the Minister of Health whether he is aware that in the estimate of expenditure for the half-year ending Michaelmas, 1924, presented at the last meeting of the West Ham Board of Guardians, provision had to be made for a sum of £110,530, being interest and repayment of principal due on certain loans advanced by the Ministry, in addition to a sum of £80,125 due from the guardians to the Ministry for the same purpose at the end of the current month, and that, whilst continuing the present high rate of 4s. 6d. in the £ for Poor Law purposes only, application would have to be made for a further loan of £400,000, in addition to the sum of £1,000,000 already borrowed, in order to provide the guardians with sufficient funds far the performance of their statutory duties, including payment of relief to unemployed men and women; and will he, when submitting the case of the necessitous Poor Law areas to the Cabinet for their consideration, draw particular attention to the serious position in which certain areas are placed owing to the debt which had been accumulated by the boards of guardians in those areas, acting on the advice of successive Governments to borrow money from the Ministry when the amounts obtainable from the rates have proved insufficient to meet the expenditure incurred in performing their statutory duties?


My right hon. Friend is aware of the general position as affecting the West Ham Board of Guardians. As regards the last part of the question, all the relevant factors were brought under review in considering the case of the areas to which my hon. Friend refers.


Is there any truth in the report which is being circulated that the Minister of Health submitted a Memorandum to the Government and that the Government turned it down?


The hon. Member should place no reliance on rumours and reports that are circulated.