HC Deb 08 March 1939 vol 344 cc2143-4
70. Colonel Nathan

asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer whether he is now able to state which of the recommendations of the Income Tax Codification Committee, in its report of March, 1936, His Majesty's Government propose to accept; and when the necessary legislation will be introduced?

The Financial Secretary to the Treasury (Captain Euan Wallace)

The recommendations of the committee are still under consideration, and I am not yet able to state when it may be possible to introduce legislation.

Colonel Nathan

Does the right hon. and gallant Gentleman recall that it is now three years since this committee reported, after nine years deliberation, and that it is just one year since practically the same answer as he has given to-day was given to a similar question, and am I to understand that no progress has been made during the last 12 months in the consideration of this matter?

Captain Wallace

No, a great deal of progress has been made in the last year. It is a fact, as the hon. and gallant Member said, that it took the committee nine years to report; therefore it must take the Government some time to digest that report.

Colonel Nathan

Does the right hon. and gallant Gentleman recall that precisely the same words were used a year ago by the Chancellor of the Exchequer in answer to a similar question; and can he say how far the process of digestion has proceeded during the past 12 months?

Captain Wallace

It was because I thought those words were peculiarly apt that I took the liberty of repeating then?

Mr. Day

Are we to understand that it takes the Government as long as this to make up their minds on other matters?