That, for the purposes of any Act of the present Session to transfer to county councils and to the town councils of certain burghs in Scotland functions of existing local authorities relating to poor relief, lunacy, and mental deficiency, education, public health, and other matters; to amend the law relating to local government in Scotland; to grant relief from rates in the case of the lands and heritages in Scotland to which the Rating and Valuation (Apportionment) Act, 1928, applies; to discontinue grants from the Exchequer for certain purposes in Scotland, and to provide other grants in lieu thereof; and for purposes consequential on the matters aforesaid, it is expedient—
§ Resolution read a Second time.
§ Mr. WEDGWOOD BENN
I desire to submit an Amendment—in paragraph (1, d, iii) to omit the words:(not being less than is provided in the said Act).
§ Mr. DEPUTY-SPEAKER (Mr. James Hope)
No notice has been given by the hon. Member of this Amendment, and I should really be justified in not accepting it; but, if he will repeat it slowly and explain the gravamen of it, I will consider the matter.
§ Mr. BENN
I am aware that it is within your power, Sir, not to select this Amendment, but I believe I am right in saying that it is not actually necessary 2550 always to give written notice. I propose, in paragraph (1, d, iii) to leave out the words:(not being less than is provided in the said Act).I shall state my reasons briefly. In the first place, I ask if the Lord Advocate can tell me of any other Money Resolution which has ever been placed before the House in this form. I contend that it is not within the power of a Committee of the Whole House to give the House of Commons, as such, any such instruction.
§ Mr. DEPUTY-SPEAKER
I should like to know if the hon. Member attaches to his Amendment the same meaning as that which I have in mind. Does the hon. Member wish to restrict the grants from the Exchequer after the first quinquennial period? That appears to be the result of his proposal, but I should like to know if that is what he has in mind, because there is some difficulty in interpretation.
§ Mr. DEPUTY-SPEAKER
The hon. Member's intention is to restrict the charge on the Exchequer after the first five years? If that be so, I think he would be in order and if he argues on those lines, I think he can proceed with his Amendment.
§ Mr. BENN
I beg to move, in paragraph (1, d, iii), to leave out the words(not being less than is provided in the said Act).I am aware that I should not be in order in moving an Amendment to enlarge the charge, as you, Sir, have just ruled and as is the practice of the House, but any Amendment to restrict may be accepted by the House on Report. My main objections to these words are as follow. First, I allege that they are without precedent, and, secondly, I allege that they are illusory. I ask the Lord Advocate can he give any precedent for a Resolution of this kind asking us to spend not less 2551 than a certain amount. I contend that it is an impertinence on the part of the Committee of the Whole House to direct the House of Commons not to spend less than a certain amount. They have a perfect right to authorise us to spend money, but that they should presume to ask the House not to spend less than a certain amount, is an enlargement of their powers which I hold to be unwarranted. I venture to say that no such words have ever appeared in any Money Resolution before.
The next question is: Have these words any meaning? I say they have none. I ask the Lord Advocate whether the insertion of these words is going, in any way, to guarantee the amount of money granted to local authorities. Here we come to a point not of procedure, but of substance. The local authorities are justly anxious about their resources, their rating capacity and what their budgets will be in five or ten years' time. The Secretary of State for Scotland and the Under-Secretary have met the difficulties raised by telling the local authorities that they propose to insert something which will ensure the financial stability of the local authorities for all time. They have given what is called a guarantee, that the proportion of the Exchequer Grant to grant-borne expenditure, shall be constant. My point is that there is nothing in these words which gives any such guarantee.
I am far from opposing a guarantee. On the contrary, it is most important that there should be a guarantee. Two such guarantees are possible. One is the rating power of the local authorities, which is some sort of guarantee, and the other is to have a Government which is genuinely sympathetic with a natural and wise growth in local expenditure. But this supposed legislative guarantee is humbug. It is a violation of precedent, and it is a violation done for the most indecent of all purposes, namely, to throw dust in the eyes of the persons who suppose that they are receiving the guarantee. I content myself with asking the Lord Advocate, can he give us any precedent for a Resolution of this kind, and can he tell us whether it would not be competent for any Government at a 2552 subsequent date, merely by altering the estimates of the General Exchequer Grant, to repeal this supposed legislative guarantee?
§ The LORD ADVOCATE (Mr. William Watson)
This is not the first occasion on which the hon. Member for North Aberdeen (Mr. Benn) has referred to this point, and I think, if he wanted precedents, he might have put his Amendment on the Paper. It is no novel matter for Parliament to determine that there shall be power to spend a certain amount not always definitely fixed. Indeed, if the hon. Member wants a precedent, I would point out that in the last few minutes this House has passed a Resolution in identical terms, without any objection from the hon. Gentleman or any other Member of the House. That is as good a precedent as we could possibly have, and my recollection is that I saw the hon. Gentleman in the House while it was being discussed.
§ The LORD ADVOCATE
if the hon. Member had put his Amendment down on the Paper, I would have taken the trouble to find precedents, but he cannot expect me to arrive here with a cartload of precedents at such short notice and on a manuscript Amendment. In regard to the second point, which was a criticism as to whether this is a guarantee at all, that is what is provided in the Bill. The Resolution says "provided in the said Act," and if there is an amount "provided in the said Act," then there is a guarantee that not less than that shall be given.
§ Mr. DEPUTY-SPEAKER
There can be no question of a guarantee in any Financial Resolution. There may or may not be a guarantee in the Bill. This is purely an enabling Resolution.
§ The LORD ADVOCATE
It is always open to Parliament to alter even an Act of Parliament with a definite sum in it, and this is as good a guarantee as can be given, as those who are familiar with these matters know what they are getting and trust in the good faith of Parliament and the Government to see that the guarantee is carried out.
§ Amendment, by leave, withdrawn.
§ Motion made, and Question proposed, "That this House doth agree with the Committee in the said Resolution."
§ Mr. STEPHEN
When this Resolution was in Committee, I took the point with the Lord Advocate that Scotland was not getting its fair share on the eleventh-eightieths or Goschen basis, and the Lord Advocate, in his reply, said:Compensation for de-rating is not on a Goschen basis at all, but depends on the facts of direct relief. Therefore, in each country it is not a question of relative proportions at all, but a question of what the relief given to a fixed amount in each country comes to."—[OFFICIAL REPORT, 5th December, 1928; col. 1346, Vol. 223.]That is the statement of the Lord Advocate on this matter, and therefore he does not question that if this de-rating relief were given on the Goschen basis, Scotland would be getting more money than it is getting under the present arrangement. I think that the answer of the Lord Advocate is quite ineffective, that this relief should be given to Scotland on the Goschen basis, that Scotland should not necessarily be bound to a 75 per cent. reduction in rates, but that it might be necessary, owing to the fact that there is a higher rateable value in Scotland, to make the rating reduction in Scotland 80 per cent. At any rate, the figures should be so apportioned that at least we get our due proportion on the Goschen basis. I cannot for the life of me see why, if the Scottish people are contributing to the taxes of the country, when it comes to an apportionment of that money we should not get the apportionment which has been followed in connection with grants; and I would like the Scottish Members in the Government to consider this again.
2554 There is one other point in connection with it. There was a certain amount of complaint with regard to the amount of rating relief that was to go to agriculture in Scotland. The figure proposed, I think, was one-sixth, and it was changed to one-eighth, though the agricultural community desired that it should be one-twelfth. Well, here is an opportunity of making it one-twelfth. If Scotland were to get its proportion on the Goschen basis, then there would be more money, and possibly the demands of agriculture in Scotland might be satisfied; but I hope that ray colleagues from Scotland, in all parties in this House, are going to see that we get the amount of money that is spent on de-rating in Scotland on the Goschen basis. There is no reason why we should have the 75 per cent., or the one-eighth so far as agriculture is concerned, because certain things are happening in England. The Government are very anxious to introduce the block grant system in connection with so much, and if the Government are so anxious to do that, it should be the duty of each Scottish Member in this House to see that Scotland gets its proportionate share of the block grant. I see the hon. and gallant Member for Dumfries (Brigadier-General Charteris) in the House, and I hope that he, in the interests of agriculture in Scotland, when this abnormality in connection with the Bill has been pointed out, will join with us in seeing that the amount of money that is spent in de-rating relief in Scotland is going to be on the Goschen basis and that we are going to get our full eleven-eightieths. I do not expect an assurance now from the Government, but I hope the Scottish Members in the Government will consider the matter again and will see if something cannot be done later on in order to put this matter right.
§ Brigadier-General CHARTERIS
I do not want to follow in all his arguments the hon. Member who has just spoken, but I do think that someone on the Front Bench should intervene in the discussion either on this Financial Resolution or on the Scottish Bill when it is in Committee or before the House on Third Reading, and explain quite fully the justification for the figure which has been arrived at in relation to the one-sixth originally fixed and the one- 2555 twelfth advocated by agriculturists in Scotland. We Scottish Members have no doubt at all that the Government have gone into these figures with extreme care, but it is right that Scotland should have at least an outline of the calculations on which the figure was arrived at before the matter finally leaves the decision of this House.
§ Sir A. SINCLAIR
The point raised by the hon. Member for Camlachie (Mr. Stephen) and also by the hon. and Gallant Member for Dumfries (Brigadier-General Charteris) about the assessment of agricultural hereditaments is a very important one. As my hon. Friend has said, the original assessment was upon one-sixth and agriculturists in Scotland made a demand for one-twelfth. Extraordinarily careful figures were presented, drawing an absolutely exact and precise analogy between the practice in Scotland and the practice in England in valuing houses as distinct from farms, because in Scotland we have not been in the habit of valuing the house as distinct from the holding. The English figures have been taken and worked out, and it appears quite clearly from those figures, which have been circulated by the Scottish Chamber of Agriculture, that the corresponding figure in Scotland would be one-twelfth instead of one-sixth. Therefore, I join with my hon. and gallant Friend, in the first place, in demanding to know how this figure of one-eighth was arrived at.
My second point is this: In the White Paper we were told that Scotland was to get £750,000 out of the additional money which was coming. That was on the basis of agriculture being rated at one-sixth, and now that they are to get more, why have we not more money voted in the Financial Resolution? Does it mean that agriculture is not getting the money it requires from the Exchequer, or does it mean that it is getting it at the expense of other industry? My third point is this: If we pass this Resolution, are we prevented from raising the question when the Bill comes into Committee? Are we then to be told, if we demand that agriculture is to be assessed on one-twelfth, that there is not enough money and that it is outside the terms of the Financial Resolution? Therefore, I would ask the 2556 hon. and gallant Member who is going to reply if he can make it clear that it will still be open to demand that agriculture shall be assessed on one-twelfth, and if the House grants that demand, it y ill be able to be done, and we shall not have the argument put forward that, having agreed to the Financial Resolution, it is impossible to change the basis of this agricultural assessment?
The next point I want to raise is with regard to a number of questions—I am not going to argue them to-day—which I addressed to the Lord Advocate on the Committee stage of this Resolution. Those questions were admittedly on points of detail, and, naturally, he did not answer them categorically on that occasion. I will repeat them for the benefit of my hon. and gallant Friend, for I am afraid that if we do not now get answers to these questions again we shall be told, when we come to the Committee stage of the Bill, that we have passed the Financial Resolution, and, therefore, it is impossible to give satisfaction to any demands that may be made. I would point out that all these questions are based upon this particular difficulty, that whereas it is clear from a study of the Financial Memorandum attached to the Bill that the normal expenditure will increase in Scotland at the rate of £1,200,000 during each quinquennium, and that this increase will start in the first year, and will gradually proceed during the second, third, fourth and fifth years of each quinquennium, no assistance will be obtainable from the Government to meet it. Nor is the normal increase of expenditure to be borne by the general body of ratepayers in Scotland, because farming landowners and industrialists are to be relieved of their rates, and, therefore, the whole of this increase will fall on the unfortunate householders, professional men and shopkeepers who in the Bill are left within the area of assessment. This class of people, after all, comprise the vast majority of people in Scotland, and I want to know that, if we pass this Resolution now, we shall be able to insert the necessary safeguards in Committee on the Bill.
These are safeguards which I am going to propose, and as to which I ask whether it will be open to us to insert in the Bill. They are not an exhaustive 2557 list, but they are those to which the county councils in Scotland generally, and my own county council in Caithness in particular, have suggested should be inserted. In the first place, they suggest that the period of revision should be reduced from five years to three. Shall we he able to discuss that in Committee of the Bill if we pass this Financial Resolution? My second question is this: The county councils are demanding that the block grants should not include the loss of rates, and that the loss of rates should be made good to the rating authorities each year. If we pass this Resolution, shall we be able to discuss that question without recommitting the Bill Obviously, if we are to re-discuss the Financial Resolution on each of these points we shall make no progress. The third question is, supposing additional obligations are imposed by Parliament on local authorities during the quinquennium, they will have to meet those obligations, according to the Bill as at present drafted, without any increase in the block grants. Can we get inserted in the Bill on the basis of this Financial Resolution a provision whereby block grants will be increased when additional obligations are imposed by Parliament?
There is another and an even more important matter. Parliament has already imposed upon these local authorities obligations which, for various reasons, they have not yet been able to meet, and the expenditure has not yet started in the standard year. For example, there is the Housing (Rural Workers) Act. The county council of Caithness have incurred obligations under that Act of something like £4,000, but no expenditure has, in fact, been incurred, or only a few hundred pounds in the standard year. Therefore, that expenditure of £4,000 will have to be met during the quinquennium. No revision will be made in the block grant for meeting that expenditure. If we part with this Resolution now, shall we be able to urge that the block grant shall be increased when a rating authority can show that it is committed to expenditure in the forthcoming quinquennium which did not rank for the calculation of the block grant in the standard year? I hope my hon. and gallant Friend will be able to give me answers to these questions, which are of 2558 real interest to the ratepayers of Scotland.
§ Mr. WILLIAM GRAHAM
Financial resolutions are notoriously difficult to describe, and sometimes much more difficult to understand, and it is not surprising that we Scottish Members should be in great doubt as to the meaning of certain of the provisions in the Resolution on the Paper. Arising out of the speech of my hon. and gallant Friend, the Member for Caithness (Sir A. Sinclair), I cannot help feeling that this Financial Resolution is drawn in elastic terms. It differs from the figures which are quoted in the White Paper, and certainly from the figures which find their place in the 'Financial Memorandum of the Sill. Accordingly, I would suggest to the Government—and I hope that their reply will not disappoint us—that, under the Resolution as it appears on the Paper, we shall have complete freedom in discussing the constituent elements in the financial scheme of the Bill when we reach the Committee stage of the Measure; that is to say, that hon. Members will not be precluded from supporting any Motion for separating the de-rating part of the Bill from other parts, nor precluded from seeking guarantees as to contributions from the State, subject always to the limitation that what they are supporting shall not increase the charge. That, of course, is the difficulty, in a matter of this kind, with which we are always confronted. If there were that understanding, if the Government were able to give a reply on those lines, Scottish Members probably would agree that they would have all possible freedom in the Committee stage of the Bill.
The second point which I want to put to my hon. and gallant Friend, the Under-Secretary of State, has regard to the Goschen percentage. That is eleven-eightieths of the approved expenditure in England and Wales. That was regarded in Scotland for a great many years as the proper contribution to the needs of our country. I say nothing at all about the basis this afternoon. Some people have suggested that it is inadequate, and occasionally it has been argued that it has conferred some advantage on Scotland, but, whatever the merits of the Goschen percentage, we want to be perfectly clear that there is only a limited scheme under 2559 this proposition. The cost of the de-rating contributions under this scheme to Scotland is £3,200,000, rather more than £2,000,000 in assigned revenues, and the new money, £750,000. Therefore, apart from one or two items which are not strictly relevant, such as road grants and others, the total Scottish pool is £6,000,000. The Goschen percentage applies to Scottish contributions generally, so it is only part of the question which is covered here, and the answer which we are entitled to get from the Government is as to the extent to which the Goschen basis has figured in this plan, and the steps that they were taking—or should have taken to safeguard the Scottish position. That is quite an important matter in this controversy.
One other question remains. My hon. Friend the Member for Camlachie (Mr. Stephen) raised certain questions with regard to the percentage, which appeared to touch upon the question of Scottish valuation. We must make it plain that the estimate in the case of England of £24,000,000 which is due to de-rating is only an approximate figure. Under the Act of 1925, the revaluation of England is proceeding, and all that the Government have said is that this is the best figure which they can put upon the problem. Hence our contention that it is a very grave step to make that a fixed part of this scheme, even when we allow for the new money and the manner in which the Government seek to dope the situation by later additional contributions. In the case of Scotland, they have allocated £3,200,000 to the loss due to de-rating. The question which immediately arises is whether that is the strict proportion to which we are entitled, and by what method the Government have arrived at that figure? No one disputes that, generally stated, our valuation in Scotland was, certainly up to the time of the English Act of 1925, and even now, on a much better basis, because it is much nearer to the time of any change; there was something in the nature of an annual review, and we had not that time-lag which was true of the English valuation, and which constituted, in our view, a large part of its weakness. If Scottish valuation is higher, to what extent is that represented or taken into account in the 2560 £3,200,000, and what was the kind of analysis on which the Government proceeded in that matter? I raise these three points, but the overriding consideration is that we want the Government to say—and we hope that they will say—that this is an elastic Resolution, and that no debate is precluded on the alteration of the specific items in the Scottish Bill, that we have freedom to move their exclusion or to make any other changes, and that we are not going to be bowled over on a technicality on the ground that we cannot do it because of the terms of this proposal.
§ Mr. HARDIE
I want to refer to some misunderstandings that have crept in in regard to education. I received a communication this morning from people who hold positions which give them a right to write, and it appears that they have a misunderstanding that the financial system which at present obtains is to he interfered with under this Bill, and that there is no longer to be the percentage basis for payment to education, but that there will be a block grant controlled by the formula in the Bill. We have understood that it is to remain a percentage basis on a sliding scale, and I would like the Under-Secretary of State to make the question clear, because the matter is so involved that we do not want to create any more trouble by misunderstandings. With regard to the £24,000,000 which has been referred to, that has just as much a basis as the formula, and the formula has no basis at all. When I read this formula it always puts me in mind of the man who used to go round to Scottish fairs. He would get a crowd round him by ringing a bell and saying, "Now, who will give me threepence for this piece of cardboard and see what I give you back?" That was how he got his crowd.
§ Mr. HARDIE
Yes, he knew perfectly well that when he had got people to give him threepence for the cardboard, all those with a piece of cardboard would stay. That is how he built up his audience. [Interruption.] Yes, they have more than brains to give away in Scotland, and if you watch the Debates in this House you will see that. On this question of the £24,000,000, if there had 2561 been anything in the Bill which showed that this could be a fixed sum, we might have been able to debate on a permanent form of measurement in relation to the finance. But the formula itself is not based upon anything permanent, and this sum is spoken of by three of the representatives of the Government on the Treasury Bench as being something which is not fixed. When they are pressed to say whether it is liquid, they will not say it is liquid. When they are pressed to define what it may possibly be, and whether you can get any form of measure to apply to it, you never get any answer, and it is quite evident that there is a mix up.
On the Second Reading Debate the Minister of Health, when crushed into a corner over the formula, had to explain that there was a doubt about the formula in one part of his speech; but in the second part of his speech, in order to bring his back benchers into line, he said he thought there was no doubt. But the fact remains that that formula is something without a basis of calculation, and it seems to be a very dangerous thing, in making the drastic changes which are proposed for Scotland in this Bill, that on the money side there should be nothing definite so far as the measurement is concerned. The unemployed are the least of the weighted factors in the Bill, and therefore the question of the unemployed becomes a very serious one for Scotland. Our unemployed are asking what this new de-rating Bill means to them, and we have to tell them that they are to be considered after question of density of population based upon the miles of road, upon the number of children under five, and the rateable value. When we have arrived at the fourth dimension in this way it begins to be a question of 50 over a given number of persons for every mile of road. In the case of the unemployed there comes in the factor of 1½ per cent. multiplied by 10—and from that we get another multiple. All this is done in order to try to make it difficult.
No formula was needed to hand over £400,000 to the brewers, but it requires an algebraical formula to find out where the unemployed and needy man stands. You can hand over rebates of £12,000,000 a year to people who do not require it, but when it comes to a question of finance 2562 in relation to the unemployed man, there has to be an algebraical formula—there are four factors to be considered in order that there may be no mistake, in order that the poor unemployed man may not get an extra bit of bread or an extra bit of cheese at any time through some miscalculation. The four factors are: proportion of children under five years of age, rateable value per head of the population, number of unemployed insured men, and the population per mile of public roads—and that does not say whether they are tarred roads, or private roads which are not tarred. This thing is mucked up to try to make it as difficult as possible for those who are in real need to get any advantage. One would have thought that in an age which is advancing towards more intense Christian feeling the idea would have been to make it easier to help those who are in need. In the fourth factor, as it is called, we are told about a double mathematical curve; that is made the basis of some of the calculations which relate to the finance of the scheme so far as it affects countries. The factor which applies only to counties is, in other words, expressed in two parts. In the first place, the calculation deals with cases in which there are fewer than 100 people per mile of road, but over the page it tells you that while you are to take that as your first curve, the second curve is based upon the ratio of 50 to the number of persons per mile of road. That is the line upon which you have got to make up the formula. In any case where the population is less than 100 per mile of road it is raised by the percentage deficiency below 200—whatever is below 200 has to be made up to 200; and then this line will show the increase which is to go to the area. That is the line, it shows just exactly—
§ Mr. HARDIE
You are like the Irishman who was visiting Dublin and said to the car driver: "Drive me quick, because I want to see all I can before I get to the boat." The man said, "That is one building," and then "That is the other side of the building." You are like the man was—you are still in the same position. We are told that above the level of 100 persons per mile of road the 2563 loading factor is to be expressed as the ratio of 50 to the number of persons per mile of road, but when the number exceeds 200 persons per mile of road then you get a calculation in which you get 50 above a number. [Interruption.] You see what happens when you go into the metaphysical side of the thing.
I have drawn attention twice to the Lesmahagow case. Twice the Secretary of State or the Under-Secretary has said they are not going to take notice of the facts of the case. That is a case in which a dairy farmer has got to use a one-ton motor lorry 365 days in the year. His average consumption of petrol is four gallons per day. The extra petrol tax on that four gallons per day amounts to £8 a year more than he gets out of the proposed relief. In that case the de-rating Bill is going to put him £8 out of pocket. Anyone who has a belief in this Bill will always give an answer to problems which arise out of it, but here we are told that they are simply not going to take any notice of the fact that people will suffer from the application of this Bill to Scotland. I do not want to take up time by reading the English papers, but they record a case where a farmer points out that while he is going to get 13s. 7½d. relief his two sons, who are in the motorcar industry, will have to pay an extra £500 a year owing to the extra petrol duty. That is the English side, and I am pointing out that the Scottish side of the case will also have to be faced. I challenge anyone in charge of this Resolution that if they do not face this matter in its application to Scotland they will have the whole farming community up against them, because they will not be able to make progress under such a Bill.
All these paragraphs dealing with local finances are based on a desire to control and check the natural expansion and growth of communities. It seems to be the whole idea of the Bill, that by getting control of finance, by giving a block grant based on a certain year, the communities will never be able to expand beyond the expenditure of that particular year. What will happen? There will be a community with ideas for improving its amenities, which will want to do something which would entail a large expenditure that was not calculated in the measured quinquennium year, or in that 2564 part of the quinquennium which becomes the standard of measurement. It means that although they may desire to expand in a certain direction, that expenditure can only be at the expense of something else. If not, they will have to put the cost on the rates. Who will pay the rates? The shopkeeper and the householder. The cost of expansion on anything new will mean an increase in the burden of those who are paying the rates. It cannot be otherwise; there is no other way out. If the formulitis, if I may so term it, had added one-fifth, and if we were to determine what was to be the proportion of expansion in regard to new things in the areas by taking the expenditure in decades for the last 50 years and we based the expansion upon those decades, we should get a measurable factor so far as the expenditure on new things is concerned. The Government have no desire to allow communities to expand. They say, in effect, that the local authorities must cease to supply working class people with improvements of their amenities. That is not fair play.
No one understands what I am saying better than the Under-Secretary of State for Scotland. He knows the desire of every Scottish community to improve its native town. The sentiment in the town is enough to bring about expenditure on the historic side of thousands of pounds, and no one would grudge it, but apart from the sentimental side the absolute need of natural expansion is going to be denied to the authorities. It is no use bringing forward a Resolution and trying to make us believe that in that Resolution is contained all that is good for the country. All is not good for the country when we find its chief representatives merged with those who are antagonistic to the development of that country. I am beginning to feel that in this matter there is a kind of personal antagonism. We are asked to-day to do certain things practically in the dark. No one from the Government, side has tried to answer the questions about finance in regard to the small burghs and the large burghs, because they know that the fight that is coming will be a fight based purely upon the financial needs necessary for the expansion of communities, and they will not be able without a great deal of trouble to tie down communities in Scotland in regard to expenditure to a year that was a miserable year from the point of view 2565 of expenditure. There will be a combination of ratepayers, namely, householders and shopkeepers, against the Government for trying to impose such conditions, and that combination will be such that, as one of their own party has already said, a first class compartment will be sufficient to bring to this House all the Tory representatives from Scotland after the next election.
§ 3.0 p.m.
§ Mr. BUCHANAN
I should like to ask the Under-Secretary of State for Scotland a question. At the end of the fourth year there is to be a review of the moneys spent in Scotland, and the expenditure is to be allocated for the next five years on the basis of that fourth year. If we are to have a review at the end of four years for the whole of Scotland for the purpose of allocating the spending for the next five years, that will be based on what the whole of the local authorities have spent. The result will be unfortunate. Local authorities differ. People who want reactionary authorities are entitled to have them, and people who want advanced local authorities are entitled to have them. Certain authorities are reactionary in their outlook, they are mean in their expenditure, they curb local services and restrict every penny they can in the normal development of the community which they govern. I am not complaining about that, because they are the elected body, but on the other hand there are the advanced, authorities, who wish to develop social services, child welfare services, etc. If at the end of four years an allocation is to be made, it will be based on what has been spent by the reactionary local authorities who refuse to spend anything in the normal development of their particular services. That is a bad basis on which to apportion the future expenditure of advanced authorities, who are prepared to initiate new schemes. Therefore, in basing the future expenditure upon the expenditure of the whole of Scotland in a certain year, there will be a limiting effect on the advanced authorities because of the reactionary authorities who have refused to spend money.
When we are discussing Financial Resolutions we are constantly twitted by the Conservative party that we do not apply business knowledge and business prin- 2566 ciples. When the Government bring in a Money Resolution they ought to try to justify that Resolution on business grounds. We have been criticised for not being as strong an Opposition as certain people would like us to be. If we have done nothing else we have driven the Government into trying to do something far the unemployed. This scheme of the Government may be feeble, weak and stupid, but certainly they have been driven by the Opposition into doing something for the unemployed, before they face the next General Election. If the Opposition have accomplished nothing else, at least they have driven the present Government, shamefaced and even stupidly, into making some attempt to face the problem of the unemployed. When this Resolution is carried the Government claim that the granting of the money will improve the condition of the unemployed and the masses of the people of this country. When we are making grants amounting to £3,250,000, it ought to be made clear what the effect of the expenditure will be.
Frequently, the Government, when they bring forward proposals in the shape of rating relief, grants to diplomats, or Crown Colony Governors, proceed on the assumption that we need no explanation as to the needs of the people who are to receive the money. On the other hand, if I or any of my colleagues suggest a shilling more expenditure upon the unemployed, or 3s. more for old age pensions, we have to justify the need of the people who are to receive it down to the last penny. Therefore, in addition to the propositions which I have laid down, the Government must prove that the sum of money they are asking us to grant win mean an appreciable difference to the prosperity of the masses of the people in Scotland. The Government have also to prove that the people who are to receive this £3,250,000 need the money, and that it is desirable to give it to them. Hon. Gentlemen opposite have never attempted to prove the proposition that this 3,250,000 is being granted to various people in Scotland who need the money. It is quite true that the local authorities approve of a certain proportion of these grants, but, apart from that, the Government have never attempted to prove to the Rouse that those who are actually going to receive the money need it.
2567 In the next place, I would like to ask: Is it desirable to give this money to these people, comparing their needs with the needs of other sections of the community? Let me give one illustration. Under this Resolution, we are to grant to the landowners of Scotland £700,000. I have had that amount capitalised by an hon. Member who sits on the Liberal Benches and who takes an intelligent interest in all matters affecting Scotland, and he says that it represents £15,000,000. Will any hon. Member of this House attempt to defend the proposition that if you give £700,000 a year to the landlords of Scotland you will make a better or a happier Scotland than you have now? Is any hon. Member prepared to dispute my contention that if you have 700,000 to spend in Scotland there are not at least half-a-dozen more desirable methods of spending that money than handing it over to the Scottish landlords? Is there not in Scotland a much more clamant need for the spending of this money in other directions? The Scottish miners at the present time are suffering untold distress and misery; poverty and destitution are clamant in every part of the country. Would it not be much better for the Scottish people, would it not be much better for the trade of Scotland, if this £700,000, instead of being handed over to a rapacious, cruel set of people known as the landlords in Scotland, were handed over to the poor mining population in Scotland?
Here is Scotland with a down-trodden, under-fed, badly paid population. Nobody denies the mining problem. The "Glasgow Herald" has issued an appeal for funds for charitable purposes, and every penny that we spend ought to be guided by the principle of the greatest good for the greatest number. I do not suppose that more than about 2,000 Scottish landlords will benefit by this. Make it 5,000, or even 10,000 if you like. Every one of them, almost without exception, is, comparatively speaking, rich; not one of them, if this money were not granted would miss food, clothing or shelter. In spending this money, the choice that lies before this House is whether it is correct, whether it is moral, whether it is right, to hand this sum over to a small influential class, or to hand it over to a large number who are on the verge of destitution, if they are not already there. 2568 That is the business proposition. The Under-Secretary of State must justify, on this Financial Resolution, the spending of that sum of money on a class that does not need it, while he refuses to spend anything like an equal sum on a class that does need it. I know he will reply that this rate relief will ultimately come to the miners; but see the difference. If you give this £700,000 to the miners, it goes to them at once; it does not ultimately creep down to them, and it is not even a question of prophecy as to its getting there—it gets there. I ask the Under-Secretary of State to prove to me which of the two courses is the more desirable and the better for Scotland.
With regard to the grant to the industrial section of the community, it is urged, I admit with a little more force, that if you grant the money to the industrial section it will enable costs to be reduced and articles to be cheapened, so that we shall be in a better position to compete with other countries abroad. That is the same argument that has been used largely by employers of labour and by Governments in the past. It is the argument that was used when this Government increased the hours of the miners. They said that if the cost of producing coal were made less we should be able to capture the German or the French market. It is the same argument that was used by the shipbuilders, that if wages were lessened we should capture the trade of every other country in Europe. So far, when applied to either wages or hours, that argument has been fallacious. Now we are told, "We cannot proceed any further with hours and wages. We cannot get the workers to work for less money or for longer hours. After having exploited the industrial workers to the utmost, we will now turn to see how far we can get our friends, the Government, to exploit the State on our behalf."
Therefore, now they come and get this grant for Scotland, in order, we are told, that, if they can cheapen the cost of production in regard to rates, they can compete more effectively with foreign countries. Take a shipbuilding yard like Fairfield. I am not quite certain what is the actual sum that will come to them, but, if we call it £40,000 or £50,000, is anyone seriously going to say that a £50,000 grant from the rates is going to allow the Fairfield Company, which turns 2569 out four or five boats in a year at a cost of from £5,000,000 to £6,000,000, to capture the world's market as against Germany? Even if it were true, as long as you have international agreement, Germany will, by some other vague method, immediately cut away any advantage we have over her, and you will continue on the old method of one country competing against another. There are people more deserving of assistance than the Fairfield Shipbuilding Company. If you are going to hand over public money, you ought to prove, first of all, that it will improve trade, and, secondly, that the Fairfield Company are a desirable set of people to have the money.
§ Mr. SPEAKER
This would be much more appropriate to the Second Reading Debate on the Bill than to the Financial Resolution.
§ Mr. BUCHANAN
I have not risen to delay the proceedings. I am here for the serious purpose of making a contribution, and I certainly think I am in order. I want the Under-Secretary to prove, first of all, that this grant to the Fairfield Company will mean greater employment, and, secondly, that they are the best people to get it.
§ Mr. SPEAKER
The primary object, as I understand it, of the money Resolution is to enable certain things to be done under the Bill, that is, to pay contributions to local authorities in lieu of rates, and, on that basis, it is in order to discuss the Resolution. But it cannot be in order to discuss the whole question as to the various industries which will be de-rated, and the effect that that will have upon them.
§ Mr. STEPHEN
On that point of Order. Surely, it is possible to argue that the expenditure of this money is not justified in this way, because it is not going to produce any beneficial results to a large number of other people besides employers, such as shopkeepers.
§ Mr. SPEAKER
The hon. Member forgets that a Money Resolution is not a mandatory Resolution. It is only an enabling Resolution for certain things to be done under the Bill. We must discuss this matter on the Bill and not on this Resolution.
§ Mr. BUCHANAN
I have heard this morning how money was to be spent with regard to agriculture. Can you, Mr. Speaker, tell me the difference between Members being allowed to discuss sums of money being spent on agriculture and my being able to discuss the question of money being allowed to go to employers?
§ Mr. SPEAKER
The hon. Member has suggested that certain arguments in regard to agriculture were in order. I think I convinced the House that they were not.
§ Mr. BUCHANAN
That was later on. In any case I was coming to the conclusion of my remarks, and I am sorry that I have cut across you, Mr. Speaker. All I was saying was, that I think it would have been much more desirable if, instead of spending this money on large owners of capital, we had given it to the people who work for those who own that capital. The money would have been better spent. It would have brought better trade. It would have made a much happier and a more contented community. The Under-Secretary of State may feel quite happy at having to vote this sum of money to Scotland, but I do not feel at all happy about it. I would much sooner that the Under-Secretary of State, instead of bringing forward a Bill to grant something like £3,500,000 to comparatively rich people, had turned his eyes in another direction to see whether there were not poor people in Scotland, whether there were not terrible inequalities in Scotland, whether there were not terrible social ravages in our midst in Scotland. He and the Government would have received greater credit, and would have gone down to history with a much nobler name, if, instead of granting £3,500,000 to rich people, most of whom are overburdened with wealth, they had devoted that sum to assisting poor people who are living on the verge of destitution.
§ The UNDER-SECRETARY of STATE for SCOTLAND (Major Elliot)
The Debate this afternoon has ranged over a very wide compass and more particularly in its closing stages issues have been raised which, I think, would require more time than I am able to devote to them and more rope than Mr. Speaker would allow if I were to go adequately into all the details. To begin with, perhaps the 2571 most important question was that put by the right hon. Gentleman the Member for Central Edinburgh (Mr. W. Graham), who said that the whole point was whether the Financial Resolution was drawn in sufficiently elastic terms to allow the questions of principle to be raised on the Bill and freedom of discussion to take place. That is our intention, and that was our intention in drafting the Resolution. We believe that the Resolution has been drawn in terms quite sufficiently elastic for a discussion to take place of all the main features of the Bill and for the House of Commons to express its opinion on the subjects. The right hon. Gentleman asked specifically whether, for instance, the period of years was fixed under this Financial Resolution. Obviously, the period is not fixed, and it will be quite in order, subsequently, to determine any period which the House may desire.
Main questions of principle are not in any way prejudged by this Resolution. It is only an enabling Resolution, drawn in the widest possible terms and will enable the House to carry on the discussion in the fullest possible way. It is not necessary, therefore, for me to go into several of the points which have been raised. I should like, however, to deal in a word with the wide questions raised by the hon. Member for Gorbals (Mr. Buchanan). He said that we have to justify this Financial Resolution, explain why we wish to pay over these sums of money, and what the effect will be. We desire to pay these sums of money in particular to reduce the rates on agricultural land by 6s. 8d. in the £, to reduce the rates on industrial subjects by 8s. 4d. in the £, and make reductions in rates of many shillings in the £ over the various parts of the countryside in Lanarkshire. For instance, a reduction of 1s. 7d. in the £ for every ratepayer in the parish of Carnwath, a reduction of 3s. 8d. in the £ for every ratepayer in the parish of Dalserf, a reduction of 2s. 4d. in the £ for every ratepayer in the parish of Hamilton, and a reduction of 1s. 9d. in the £ for every ratepayer in the parish of Old Monkland.
These are substantial contributions to the benefit of Scotland as a whole, and they make a substantial contribution to the large question of the industries of 2572 the country and the distressed areas. The hon. Member for Springburn (Mr. Hardie) went into a metaphysic of figure—into which he will not expect me to follow him—on the question of the formula. What we ask the House to decide upon this afternoon is not the figures of the formula but, the results of the formula. In the two White Papers which have been issued are the figures for every area in Scotland. We have gone further than they have in England in this respect, and we have been able to bring out the figures in every case. We are not asking the House to decide on the abstract question as to whether our ratio of loading is correct. Here are the figures.
§ Major ELLIOT
They are not illustrations; they are the figures for every area in Scotland. There is not an area which is not covered by the June or August White Paper.
§ Mr. HARDIE
You say that you have the figures. I am acquainted with the White Paper and what it contains, but I come back to the chief question—upon what basis did you get these figures? I do not want anything but a straight answer to a straight question.
§ Major ELLIOT
Surely, the process by which we have obtained these figures is given in great detail in the Memorandum submitted to the House. I do not intend to read page after page showing how we got them. There is the process; any Member is capable of going into the figures for himself, and none better than the hon. Member for Spring-burn. When we ask the House to carry out the de-rating proposal, we are asking them to carry out what means a reduction of 2s. to 3s. in the £ for the hardly-hit industrial parishes in Lanarkshire, of 12s. in the case of some of the needy Highland parishes, and of over 12s. in the rates for South Uist. These figures have been brought out and they have awaited challenge. They have not been challenged in any given instance, and, that being so, we are entitled to say that the figures have been brought out, and that it is upon these estimates that we ask the House to decide, and not simply on the loading factors in our formula. The parish of South Uist does not exist for the purpose of the formula; 2573 the formula exists for the purpose of the parish of South Uist. We do not produce this formula in order that prophecies might be fulfilled, but in order that we may bring benefit to the necessitous areas of Scotland. There in the White Paper are the benefits which will accrue to the necessitous areas, and they are what we ask to be judged upon.
The hon. Member for Camlachie (Mr. Stephen) raised some point with regard to the proportionate basis which we were taking—the proportion of money which Scotland was obtaining under this Bill. The de-rating proposals are for the de-rating of industry or of agriculture, and are not estimated on the Goschen basis. In any case they are only estimates for Scotland and estimates for England. If when the estimation is translated into fact we find that we are singularly worse off in Scotland than they are in England—which I do not for a moment believe—we shall have a further case to bring up on the future financial relations between the two countries.
§ Major ELLIOT
If the hon. Member asks for a pledge from a Scotsman that he will approach the Treasury in order to obtain justice for his country, I can give that pledge without a moment's hesitation. It seems to me that the right hon. Gentleman the Member for Central Edinburgh fell into an error. He said that in our estimates £750,000 is a very narrow margin for any possible error up or down. But that is not so. If the sum is insufficient, if the estimate is wrong, then the sum which has to be found does not come out of the £750,000. That sum remains a free margin, over and above whatever sum is necessary to carry out the de-rating process. The hon. Member for Dumfries (Brigadier-General Charteris) raised a point which was referred to in a previous Debate by the right hon. Member for Boss and Cromarty (Mr. Macpherson). It was the question as to the basis upon which the fraction of one-eighth was arrived at as the new figure for the de-rating of agricultural subjects in Scotland. On that, I should say that the fraction of one-sixth, which we brought out first in the White Paper, was a tentative figure, subject to the submission of fresh figures by the agriculturists and others.
§ Mr. MACPHERSON
The hon. and gallant Gentleman must remember very well that in the course of the Debate the Secretary of State for Scotland justified that figure as being a right one.
§ Major ELLIOT
And surely my right hon. Friend is not unaware that the Secretary of State would not have put in the figure without having reason to suppose that it was the right one. Naturally, when he brings a figure forward it is subject to argument, and, if argument is brought showing that the figure is wrong, then the figure will be corrected.
§ Major ELLIOT
Subsequent information enabled the Secretary of State to approach the Government with figures showing that the previous estimate had been incorrect, and the figure of one-eighth was then arrived at. The National Farmers' Union put forward the contention that agricultural subjects should be rated at one-twelfth in order to get their fair proportion in Scotland as compared with England. The figures which they put up were, we understand, based on those submitted to the Secretary of State by the Scottish Land and Property Federation. In the first place, these only applied to some 280 farms on 17 estates, a very small number on which to base an average figure for the whole of the agricultural holdings in Scotland numbering over 76,000. Examining these figures we found that, in the first place, they were calculated as showing what would be the position of the farms if they were dealt with under the English system, that is to say, if agricultural land and buildings were wholly de-rated and rates levied on farmhouses and cottages. They took the rent of the farmhouse as representing a percentage of the gross rent of the farm, and the percentage taken was that recommended by the Central Valuation Committee for England for adoption by local assistance committees as a minimum figure. They took the rent of the cottages as that shown in the valuation roll.
In the first place, the rents of cottages shown in the valuation roll as we all know are purely nominal. They are not the rents that would be put on them for assessment purposes, and where we have 2575 assessed our cottages for rating purposes, we have found, as a rule, that the assessment is over 30 per cent. higher than the assessment in the valuation roll. When they got to the minimum rents according to the English calculation, what did they do? Then they made a fundamental blunder which involves the whole of their calculation. Those who were submitting the figure of one-twelfth based it on deductions which are allowed for house property in England, which run up to 40 per cent., but that is not admissible in a comparison between the two countries, because these remissions are not confined to agricultural house property in England but are given to all house property in England, and therefore are reflected in a higher poundage. You cannot justify applying them merely in the case of agricultural houses in Scotland, because that is not done in England, and if the reductions apply to all house property, you would in the end leave agricultural houses in exactly the same position as if no deductions had been made. Therefore the whole of that deduction is erroneously made. When these deductions were disregarded it was found that the rent of farmhouses, on the minimum percentage, which the Farmers' Union themselves gave, plus the rents of the cottages, which we only gave at 10 per cent. increase, instead of 33 per cent., which the valuation would bring out, amounted as nearly as may be to one-eighth of the gross rent of the farms in question. That is, on their own figures, leaving out the fundamental error of deducting the house property valuation which is given in England to all houses, and giving on our part only 10 per cent. increase for cottage rent, the figures came out at one-eighth. The Federation submitted figures showing the rates on farmhouses and properties as assessed for water rates in two special water supply districts, where everything had been valued separately for the purposes of the special districts. There were some 167 farms where the actual valuation had been carried out, and in the great majority of these cases the assessed rents of the farmhouses represented more than one-eighth of the gross rents on the farms, on the figures they themselves submitted. The basis on which my right hon. Friend came to the decision that one-eighth represents a fair deduction in 2576 the case of Scottish agricultural subjects was partly these figures and partly others of a more representative character which he had obtained.
§ Brigadier-General CHARTERIS
The hon. and gallant Member mentioned the Farmers' Union and the Federation, but he did not mention the Chambers of Agriculture.
§ Sir A. SINCLAIR
These figures are very intricate, and, of course, no one can challenge them on the spur of the moment, but if we pass this Resolution now, shall we be able to argue for the one-twelfth, and will it be able to be inserted in the Bill without the Financial Resolution being altered?
§ Major ELLIOT
It would be improper for me to give a ruling on that point, with Mr. Speaker sitting here and the Chairman of Committees not present, but we have drawn the Resolution as widely as possible and with the utmost possible elasticity, and I believe it will be possible to debate anything, subject to the general condition that the charge on the subject is not increased. I say I believe it will be possible to argue the matters, but I do not think hon. Members will convince the House, on the basis that less money should be given to other subjects and more to agricultural subjects. The hon. Member for Caithness and Sutherland (Sir A. Sinclair) asked several questions which he said he had put in his speech on the Committee stage. There is one question which he put on Committee stage but did not repeat to-day, and that was a question dealing with the safeguards which he thinks are necessary to the tenant against the possibility of the relief being withdrawn by the landlord. He suggested the safeguard which was given under the Agricultural Rates Act, 1923. I can assure him that we are putting down an Amendment to deal with that point, thus answering that one in addition.
He also asked whether it would be possible to debate the period of revision. Yes—five years or three years, as the House decides. He asked whether it would be possible to debate the. question of block grants including losses on rates. Obviously it would be possible to debate that. He asked whether the block grant would be increased for new services imposed by Parliament. I am sure the hon. 2577 Member for North Aberdeen (Mr. Benn) would be the first to protest against what he would term the impertinence of a Committee of this House attempting to bind, not merely the present House of Commons, but, future Houses of Commons. It would be impossible for this Committee to instruct a future Parliament what action it should take. He asked whether new expenditure which had not come in the standard year could be taken into account. The case for that could be argued, subject to the general condition that it did not increase the charge on the subject.
I think now I have dealt with practically all the questions which were raised by hon. Members opposite. The main question, as I say, was raised by the hon. Member for Gorbals, namely, whether or not these proposals would be to the benefit of industry and to the benefit of unemployed men. We believe firmly that they will be to the benefit of industry and to the benefit of unemployed men, and we assure hon. Members, as I did on Second Reading, that, whatever they say as to the benefits which people in general would derive from the reduction of this taxation, we should all be unanimous in this House as to the evil if we increased taxation by a corresponding amount. If we increased burdens on industry or on agricultural land, undoubtedly it would injure the prospects of agriculture and industry, and we should be rightly blamed for having done a great deal to worsen the chances of the ordinary rank-and-file worker in this land. We say that relief to shipyards on the Clyde is the most important step we can take for the benefit of Glasgow and the Clyde. The improvement of the industrial conditions of the Clyde is a better contribution that we can make than any amount of money given away in the form of charity of one kind or another. [An HON. MEMBER: "This is charity!"] The hon. Member is entitled to his own opinion, but not to force it upon the attention of the House. This is no more a question of charity than any other relief of taxation granted to any section of the community by this or any other Government. We ask the House to pass the Report stage of this Financial Resolution as a practical contribution
§ towards the relief of industries and for the benefit of the unemployed.
§ Major ELLIOT
Shall I be allowed to reply to the hon. Member? I thought we were only allowed to speak once on the Report stage.
§ Mr. SPEAKER
The hon. Member spoke before the Question was put, "That this House doth agree with the Committee in the said Resolution."
§ Mr. BENN
I have not the least desire to prolong the Debate, but I do not want anyone to go away with the idea that the Under-Secretary has made out any case. The whole table of figures he and the Minister of Health have produced is subject to so many reservations that the figures have no value whatsoever. We are getting from our constituencies calculations showing that the table of figures has no practical value. In the second place, all these pledges about having the right to do this and being allowed to do that are all subject to the whole matter being debated between about five minutes to eight and a quarter-past ten on one evening. In the third place, although it is perfectly true that inside this Financial Resolution we can calculate the loss of rates as we please, all the other contingencies mentioned by the hon. Baronet the Member for Caithness (Sir A. Sinclair), namely, existing obligations and growing obligations, press upon my town council, part of the city of which I have the honour to represent, which are covered by paragraph (d, iii) of this Resolution, which is merely a fatuous manifesto for the General Election:and as respects any year in any subsequent period such sum (not being less than is provided in the said Act) as Parliament may determine;£750,000 is the amount, and not another farthing are the local authorities to get. There is not a tittle of support for what the hon. and gallant Gentleman has said.
§ Question put, "That this House doth agree with the Committee in the said Resolution."
§ The House divided: Ayes, 187; Noes, 73.2581
|Amery, Rt. Hon. Leopold C. M. S.
|Ashley, Lt.-Col. Rt. Hon. Wilfrid W.
|Alexander, E. E. (Leyton)
|Applln, Colonel R. V. K.
|Astor, Maj. Hn. John J. (Kent, Dover)
|Baldwin, Rt. Hon. Stanley
|Gunston, Captain D. W.
|Ballour, George (Hampstead)
|Hacking, Douglas H.
|Pilditch, Sir Philip
|Hannon, Patrick Joseph Henry
|Power, Sir John Cecil
|Barnett, Major Sir Richard
|Harvey, G. (Lambeth, Kennington)
|Pownall, Sir Assheton
|Beamish, Rear-Admiral T. P. H.
|Harvey, Major S. E. (Devon, Totnes)
|Benn, Sir A. S. (Plymouth, Drake)
|Headlam, Lieut.-Colonel C. M.
|Reid, Capt. Cunningham (Warrington)
|Bird. E. R. (Yorks, W. R., Skipton)
|Henderson, Capt. R. R. (Oxford, Henley)
|Rhys, Hon. C. A. U.
|Bird, Sir R. B. (Wolverhampton, W.)
|Henderson, Lieut.-Col. Sir Vivian
|Richardson, Sir P. W. (Sur'y.Ch'ts'y)
|Bowater, Col. Sir T. Vansittart
|Rodd, Rt. Hon. Sir James Rennell
|Bowyer, Captain G. E. W.
|Hoare, Lt.-Col. Rt. Hon. Sir S. J. G.
|Ropner, Major L.
|Brass, Captain W.
|Holbrook, Sir Arthur Richard
|Russell, Alexander West (Tynemouth)
|Bridgeman, Rt. Hon. William Clive
|Hopkins, J. W. W.
|Rye, F. G.
|Briscoe, Richard George
|Home, Rt. Hon. Sir Robert S.
|Salmon, Major I.
|Brocktebank, C. E. R.
|Howard-Bury, Colonel C. K.
|Samuel, A. M. (Surrey, Farnham)
|Broun-Lindsay, Major H.
|Hudson, Capt A. U. M. (Hackney, N.)
|Sandeman, N. Stewart
|Brown, Brig. -Gen. H. C. (Berks, Newb'y)
|Hudson, R. S. (Cumberl'nd, Whiteh'n)
|Sanderson, Sir Frank
|Buckingham. Sir H.
|Hume, Sir G. H.
|Burton, Colonel H. W.
|Hunter-Weston, Lt.-Gen. Sir Aylmer
|Sassoon, Sir Philip Albert Gustave D.
|Campbell, E. T.
|Hurd, Percy A.
|Savery, S. S.
|Carver, Major W. H.
|Hurst, Gerald B.
|Shaw, Lt.-Col. A. D. Mcl. (Renfrew, W)
|Cayzer, Maj. Sir Herbt. R. (Prtsmth. C)
|Jackson, Sir H. (Wandsworth, Cen'l)
|Sheffield, Sir Berkeley
|Cecil, Rt. Hon. Sir Evelyn (Aston)
|James, Lieut.-Colonel Hon. Cuthbert
|Shepperson, E. W.
|Cecil, Rt. Hon. Lord H. (Ox. Univ.)
|Jones, Sir G. W. H. (Stoke New'gton)
|Smith, Louis W. (Sheffield, Hallam)
|Chadwick, Sir Robert Burton
|Joynson-Hicks, Rt. Hon. Sir William
|Smith, R. W.(Aberd'n & Kinc'dine, C.)
|Charterls, Brigadier-General J.
|Kennedy, A. R. (Preston)
|Smith Carington, Neville W.
|Christie, J. A.
|King, Commodore Henry Douglas
|Clayton, G. C.
|Knox, Sir Alfred
|Somerville, A. A. (Windsor)
|Cobb, Sir Cyril
|Leigh, Sir John (Clapham)
|Southby, Commander A. R. J.
|Cochrane, Commander Hon. A. D.
|Lister, Cunliffe-, Rt. Hon. Sir Philip
|Spender-Clay, Colonel H.
|Cockerill, Brig.-General Sir George
|Lloyd, Cyril E. (Dudley)
|Stanley. Hon. O. F. G. (Westm'eland)
|Colman, N. C. D.
|Locker-Lampson, Rt. Hon. Godfrey
|Steel, Major Samuel Strang
|Cooper, A. Duff
|Streatfeild, Captain S. R.
|Cope, Major Sir William
|Lucas-Tooth, Sir Hugh Vere
|Stuart, Crichton-, Lord C.
|Couper, J. B.
|Luce, Maj.-Gen. Sir Richard Harman
|Sueter, Rear-Admiral Murray Fraser
|Crookshank, Col. C. de W. (Berwick)
|Lynn, Sir R. J.
|Talker, R. Inlgo.
|Crookshank, Cpt. H. (Lindsey, Gainsbro)
|MacAndrew, Major Charles Glen
|Templeton, W. P.
|Cunliffe, Sir Herbert
|Macdonald, Capt. P. D. (I. of W.)
|Thon son, F. C. (Aberdeen, South)
|Curzon, Captain Viscount
|Macmillan, Captain H.
|Thomson, Rt. Hon. Sir W. Mitchell-
|Davies, Dr. Vernon
|Macquisten, F. A.
|Titchfield, Major the Marquess of
|Dean, Arthur Wellesley
|MacRobert, Alexander M.
|Tryon, Rt. Hon. George Clement
|Dixey, A. C
|Maitland, A. (Kent, Faversham)
|Vaughan-Morgan, Col. K. P.
|Eden, Captain Anthony
|Maitland, Sir Arthur D. Steel
|Wallace, Captain D. E.
|Edmondson, Major A. J.
|Margesson, Captain D.
|Ward, Lt.-Col. A. L. (Kingston-on- Hull)
|Edwards, J. Hugh (Accrington)
|Meller, R. J.
|Warner, Brigadier-General W. W.
|Elliot, Major Walter E.
|Merrlman, Sir F, Boyd
|Warrender, Sir Victor
|Ellis, R. G.
|Milne, J. S. Wardlaw
|Waterhouse, Captain Charles
|England, Colonel A.
|Mitchell, Sir W. Lane (Streatham)
|Watson, Rt. Hon. W. (Carlisle)
|Erskine. James Malcolm Montelth
|Monsell, Eyres, Com. Rt. Hon. B. M.
|Watts, Sir Thomas
|Falle, Sir Bertram G.
|Moore, Lieut.-Colonel T. C. R. (Ayr)
|Wayland, Sir William A.
|Fanshawe, Captain G. D.
|Moore Sir Newton J.
|Wells, S. R.
|Forestler-Walker, Sir L.
|Morrison, H. (Wilts. Salisbury)
|Williams, Com. C. (Devon, Torquay)
|Murchison, Sir Kenneth
|Williams, Herbert G. (Reading)
|Fraser, Captain Ian
|Newman, Sir R. H. S. D. L. (Exeter)
|Wilson, R. R. (Stafford, Lichfield)
|Fremantle, Lieut.-Colonel Francis E.
|Newton, Sir D. G. C. (Cambridge)
|Winterton, Rt. Hon. Earl
|Galbraith, J. F. W.
|Nicholson, 0. (Westminster)
|Withers. John James
|Ganzoni. Sir John
|Nicholson, Col. Rt. Hn. W. G. (Ptrsf'ld.)
|Nield, Rt. Hon. Sir Herbert
|Worthington-Evans, Rt. Hon. Sir L.
|Goff, Sir Park
|O'Neill, Major Rt. Hon. Hugh
|Gower. Sir Robert
|Perkins, Colonel E. K.
|TELLERS FOR THE AYES.—
|Grant. Sir J. A.
|Perring, Sir William George
|Major Sir George Hennessy and
|Grattan-Doyle, Sir N.
|Peto, Sir Basil E. (Devon, Barnstaple)
|Greenwood, Rt. Hn. Sir H. (W'th's'w, E)
|Peto, G. (Somerset, Frome)
|Amnion, Charles George
|Evans, Capt. Ernest (Welsh Univer.)
|Baker, J. (Wolverhampton, Bilston)
|Gillett, George M.
|MacDonald, Rt. Hon. J. R. (Aberavon)
|Graham. Rt. Hon. Wm. (Edin., Cent.)
|Greenwood, A. (Nelson and Colne)
|Macpherson, Rt. Hon. James I.
|Griffith, F. Kingsley
|Grundy, T. W.
|Bond Held, Margaret
|Hamilton, Sir R. (Orkney & Shetland)
|Bowerman, Rt. Hon. Charles W.
|Hardle, George D.
|Mosley, Sir Oswald
|Hirst, G. H.
|Naylor. T. E.
|Charleton, H. C.
|Hirst, W. (Bradford, South)
|Oliver, George Harold
|Hudson, J. H. (Huddersfield)
|Cove, W. G.
|Jones, Morgan (Caerphilly)
|Crawfurd, H. E.
|Potts, John S.
|Kenworthy, Lt.-Com. Hon. Joseph M.
|Richardson, R. (Houghton-le-Spring)
|Davies, Evan (Ebbw Vale)
|Davies, Rhys John (Westhoughton)
|Salter, Dr. Alfred
|Shaw, Rt. Hon. Thomas (Preston)
|Lawson, John James
|Shepherd, Arthur Lewis
|Sinclair, Major Sir A. (Caithness)
|Walsh, Rt. Hon. Stephen
|Strauss, E. A.
|Wedgwood, Rt. Hon. Joslah
|Young, Robert (Lancaster, Newton)
|Sutton, J. E.
|Thomas. Rt. Hon. James H. (Derby)
|Welsh, J. C.
|TELLERS FOR THE NOES —
|Wilkinson, Ellen C.
|Mr. Allen Parkinson and Mr. Whiteley.
|Tinker, John Joseph
|Wilson, C. H. (Sheffield, Attercliffe)
|Viant, S. P.