§ 32 and 33. Mr. OAKLEY
asked the Minister of Health (1) the reason for the delay in notifying certain approved societies of the results of their second valuations, as such delay is depriving the societies concerned of adequate opportunity of considering any schemes of additional benefits by reason of the fact that many annual meetings of members are held during Whitsun week; that the matter has first to be considered by the governing bodies of those societies; and that their recommendations have to be in the hands of the local representatives throughout the country within the next few weeks;
(2) why there has been more delay in connection with the second valuations of approved societies, which have been made in two separate groups at different dates, than there was at the first valuations, when all valuations were made at the same date: and if he will make full investigation as to who is responsible for such delay?
The second valuation reports that are still outstand- 1372 ing are, in the main, those of certain centralised societies with membership over 25,000. I have made inquiries and find that in these cases there has not, on the whole, been greater delay than on the occasion of the first valuations, though in some respects the data for valuation have been more difficult to handle. In particular, the apportionment of funds consequent upon the severance of the Irish Free State insurance system has introduced certain complications. I am alive to the desirability of the reports being issued in time for proper consideration before the dates of the annual meetings, and this point is kept constantly in view. While I regret that it has not yet been possible to issue the whole of the reports, I can assure my hon. Friend that all possible efforts are being made to expedite the matter, and I hope that with very few exceptions the reports will all be issued within two or three weeks from now.