80. Mr. BLIND ELL
asked the Minister of Agriculture whether there are special reasons for his decision to appoint a member of the Holland County Council and a member of the Hunts County Council to serve alternately each year upon the River Nene Catchment Board; and will he, in order to secure continuity of service, give the Holland County Council at least one permanent representative upon the board?
§ Dr. ADDISON
The basis of county representation on a catchment board is rateable value. The estimated rateable value of the Nene Catchment Area is £1,781,000, of which Holland and Huntingdon account for £54,000 and £37,000, respectively. The total number of members to be appointed by county councils is 16, so that the average rateable value per member is £111,000 or more than twise the rateable value of that portion of Holland which is within the catchment area. I regret, therefore, that I am unable to agree that the Holland County Council should have the right to appoint a permanent representative, and I consider that the proposal that Holland and Huntingdon should alternately appoint a member is the best practicable method of giving both counties some representation on the catchment board.
§ Mr. BLINDELL
Is it going to be the right hon. Gentleman's usual practice with these county councils to give them representation upon the catchment board in alternate years, and, if so, does he expect that such representation will be of any service to the board at any time at all?
§ Mr. BLINDELL
Does not the right hon. Gentleman think it would be a wiser procedure either to appoint a member from the Huntingdon County Council or from the Holland County Council?