§ 58. Lieut. - Colonel HOWARD - BURY
asked the Minister of Agriculture whether, since it is permissible only to charge 2s. rent per week for agricultural cottages, he would be prepared to introduce legislation to prevent such cottages being assessed at a higher rental value than the controlled rent?
I have been asked to reply. I understand my hon. Friend's question to refer not to a controlled rent but to a value taken for the purposes of the Order of a County Agricultural Wages Committee. I may remind him that Parliament has only recently laid down a statutory definition of gross value, and I could not undertake to introduce fresh legislation for the purpose of modifying this definition in the case of a particular class of hereditaments.
§ Lieut.-Colonel HOWARD-BURY
Is the right hon. Gentleman aware that farmers have a very genuine grievance in being assessed at three times the amount of their rental value, and could he not suggest some remedy?
I imagine that all those circumstances are taken into account when the value is estimated in accordance with the statutory definition.
§ Mr. MARDY JONES
Is it not a fact that, under the Agricultural Rates Act, the farmers got a very big concession in their assessment?
§ Mr. SHEPHERD
Does the right hon. Gentleman not think it would be better to introduce legislation to ensure a living wage for agricultural labourers?