HC Deb 08 November 1955 vol 545 c1631
9. Mr. Carmichael

asked the Secretary of State for Scotland if he will now advise local authorities that they can go ahead with their school building programme; and if he will state the amount of capital which has been authorised to each local authority for this work.

Mr. J. Stuart

In the debate on 1st November my hon. Friend the Joint Under-Secretary of State made it quite clear that, subject to the usual process of approval of individual projects, education authorities are expected to go ahead with all school building projects which are regarded as essential. It is not the practice to give each education authority a ration of capital within which they must work and, as stated in the debate, provision is being made for a total educational building programme of at least £11 million in 1956–57 compared with £6 million in 1954–55.

Mr. Carmichael

Why did the right hon. Gentleman send the letter from the Chancellor of the Exchequer and himself calling on local authorities to restrict their expenditure to below that of 1954–55? Is his answer today a contradiction of that letter?

Mr. Stuart

The circular to which the hon. Member refers laid it down that, where it was impossible for an authority to reduce the expenditure below the 1954–55 level, that was understood.