§ 21. Mr. Galbraith
asked the Secretary of State for Scotland how much extra he estimates the Selective Employment Tax will add to the cost of building the average council house and to the cost of an average private house.
§ Mr. Galbraith
Two per cent. on the cost of a house is quite a substantial sum of money. How does the right hon. Gentleman expect to encourage people to build houses when this increase is imposed upon them? Will not he ask his right hon. Friend the Chancellor of the Exchequer to remove the burden of the Selective Employment Tax from people building houses?
§ Mr. G. Campbell
Can the right hon. Gentleman yet tell us whether direct labour forces belonging to local authorities will have the tax refunded to them?
§ Mr. Rankin
Did my right hon Friend observe that, just the other day, Glasgow Corporation refused to grant a contract to a prospective builder because he tried the dodge referred to by the hon. Member and instead gave the contract to direct labour?
§ Mr. Ross
The right hon. Gentleman should know all about steeply rising house-building costs, because they occurred while he was Secretary of State. [Interruption.] Oh, yes—in 1964 the increase was 10 per cent., and he did nothing about it. I hope that it will stimulate increased efficiency in the use of labour in the building industry.