49. Major WOOD
asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer whether he is aware of the hardship caused by the regulation which limits the amount of certain loans granted by the Public Works Loan Board to half the value of the National Savings Certificates purchased during the previous year within the area of the local authority which applies for one of such loans; and, seeing that the regulation acts as a discrimination against the smaller local authorities, whether he will consider the advisability of its withdrawal?
§ Mr. PETHICK - LAWRENCE
The regulation in regard to Savings Certificates is not a limitation, but in extension of the practice of the Public Works Loan Board. Including this, the facilities for the smaller local authorities are greatly in excess of those for the larger authorities. In all the circumstances, I am not prepared to amend the regulations.
Is the hon. Gentleman aware that the town to which I referred when I spoke to him last week has again received notice from the Public Works Loan Board that their loan in excess of this percentage cannot be considered?
§ Mr. PETHICK-LAWRENCE
The hon. and gallant Gentleman wrote me a letter, and, if he wishes me to go further into that matter, I shall be very pleased to discuss it with him, but it does not affect my answer to his present question.
Am I not right in saying that there is a limitation on loans of the type described in the question; and will the hon. Gentleman say what is the reason for putting this limitation on such loans?
§ Mr. PETHICK-LAWRENCE
I do not think it is possible to go into the full details of a question of this kind by question and answer. The fact is that there always were limitations upon the use of funds supplied through the Public Works Loan Board. When the Savings Certificates started, an extension was made by which certain other loans could be granted. That, however, is not a limitation, but an extension of the original plan.
May I point out, Mr. Speaker, that I put this question last week and received no answer, but was told that I was misinformed? I have put it down a second time, and again have received no answer. May I ask the hon. Gentleman whether it is not the case that there is a limitation?