HC Deb 24 May 1928 vol 217 cc2064-5

May I ask the Chancellor of the Exchequer, in the absence of the Prime Minister, whether he can state the business to be taken when the House reassembles after Whitsuntide?

The CHANCELLOR of the EXCHEQUER (Mr. Churchill)

On Tuesday, 5th June, there will be the Second Reading of the Finance Bill.

Wednesday and Thursday, 6th and 7th June respectively, until 7.30 p.m. on the Thursday, will be occupied by the Second Reading of the Rating and Valuation (Apportionment) Bill—the final title of that Measure—and after 7.30 p.m. the Committee stage of the necessary Money Resolution for that Bill and other Orders on the Paper will be taken.

The business to be taken on Friday will be announced later.


Will the right hon. Gentleman take into account the nature of the Finance Bill and the short time that is allotted for it, and will he reconsider that announcement?


The allocation of one day for the Finance Bill was not decided upon until after precedents had been extensively examined. One sitting only was given in 1927, in 1025, in 1924, in 1923, and in 1921, and for six years almost continuously preceding those years. In 1925, we had the Silk Duty, a most complicated tax—far more complicated than the Petrol Tax—but in that case only one sitting was given; and in 1926 there was the Betting Duty, which raised controversies of a different order from anything with which we are dealing now. In that case, one sitting and four hours were given to the Finance Bill, but that, the right hon. Gentleman will remember, was due to the fact that the general strike had intervened between the introduction of the Budget and the Second Reading of the Finance Bill. The Opposition decided not to discuss the Budget Resolutions at any length, and consequently a rather more lavish allowance was made on the Second Reading. In all the circumstances, I can hold out no expectation that the Government will be able to give more than one day this year.