HC Deb 25 March 1952 vol 498 c192
11. Mr. Manuel

asked the Secretary of State for Scotland if he will give an estimate of the total additional statutory burden which Scottish local authorities will have to bear by virtue of their housing statutory rate contribution being increased, based on the total allocation of houses for 1952.

Commander Galbraith

At the current rate of building by Scottish local authorities, the proposed increase in the statutory rate contributions would involve an additional annual contribution of about £125,000 from the rates. On the same basis, the estimated additional Exchequer liability would be about £330,000.

Mr. Manuel

Is the hon. and gallant Gentleman aware that Scottish local authorities are convinced that the statutory rate contribution is now much too high and that the Exchequer subsidy is still too low? Does he appreciate that they are most aggrieved, and is he aware of the perturbation which has been caused because the Department have chosen a figure of £1,635 when the actual cost of a four-apartment house to the local authority is £1,911?

Commander Galbraith

Yes, Sir, but the real answer to the increasing liability on public funds is a reduction in housing costs.