HC Deb 27 November 1934 vol 295 c672

Air Ministry.—As stated in the House of Commons by the Lord President of the Council on 19th July, 1934, His Majesty's Government have decided (subject to review in the light of any changes in the international situation) on a programme of expansion of the Royal Air Force involving additional liabilities on the Exchequer over a period of years. But at this stage it is not possible to indicate with any precision the additional expenditure which it may be necessary to incur in any one year.

Depressed Areas.—The Depressed Areas (Development and Improvement) Bill provides for a sum of £2,000,000 to be voted in the current year to a Depressed Areas Fund as explained by the Chancellor of the Exchequer on the 14th November, 1934.

Office of Works.—As was announced by the First Commissioner of Works on 31st October, 1934, the Government have decided in principle to proceed with the scheme for new Government buildings in Edinburgh. The estimated cost of this scheme is about £425,000 and it is anticipated that building operations will begin in the course of next financial year.

Civil Service Pensions.—Treasury Minute of 27th July, 1934, (Command Paper 4665) announced that as the result of the consolidation of Civil Service pay, certain existing Civil Service pensions awarded under the Treasury Minute of 20th March, 1922, have been increased as from 1st July, 1934, to a rate appropriate to a cost of living figure of 55. In a further group of cases, it is proposed as stated in the Minute of July last to seek legislative authority for a corresponding increase as from the same date.

The combined cost of these arrangements is estimated at about £100,000 in the first year of their full operation, diminishing gradually as existing pensioners die off.