HC Deb 23 January 1968 vol 757 cc288-9

Queen's Recommendation having been signified

Motion made, and Question proposed. That, for the purposes of any Act of the present Session relating to justices of the peace, it is expedient to authorise any such increase in the sums payable under any enactment out of moneys provided by Parliament as may be attributable—

  1. (a) to making allowances payable under sections 8 and 36 of the Justices of the Peace Act 1949 (at rates to be prescribed under those sections) to justices of the peace and to members of probation and after-care committees or case committees where in order to perform their duties they incur expenditure on things other than travelling and subsistence or suffer a loss of earnings or national insurance benefit; or
  2. (b) to removing from those sections the restriction on payment of an allowance to a person for duties performed not more than three miles from his usual place of residence; or
  3. (c) to facilitating the payment of travelling and subsistence allowances under section 8 to paid chairmen or deputy chairmen of quarter sessions.—[The Attorney-General.]

7.8 p.m.

Mr. Gordon Oakes (Bolton, West)

The Money Resolution deals with the very provision which my right hon. and learned Friend the Attorney-General said that no money is to be spent on at present. The House is therefore in the curious position of being asked to agree to a Money Resolution, although no money is to be spent on this matter until the economic situation improves. I do not think that my right hon. and learned Friend dealt fully with this aspect. I ask him to say more now, because, according to the Explanatory and Financial Memorandum, the sum involved will be £120,000 in the first full year. That is not a great deal of money to spend in relieving from hardship people who are doing a public service. At the end of three years the sum involved will be only £360,000. Can my right hon. and learned Friend expedite the putting into force of the provisions relating to paying the expenses of justices?

7.10 p.m.

The Attorney-General (Sir Elwyn Jones)

I am afraid that I cannot add anything to what I said at the close of the debate on the Second Reading, namely, that when it is possible to do it consistently with maintaining the present active economy drive it will be done. I and my right hon. Friend the Home Secretary know the need for it. I will see that the strong views expressed in the House on the matter are brought to the attention of my right hon. Friends who are responsible. But I ask the House at any rate to give us the powers to do this when the time is appropriate.

Question put and agreed to.