HC Deb 05 February 1973 vol 850 c18
18. Mr. Cledwyn Hughes

asked the Secretary of State for Wales how much of the extra capital of £14 million allocated to local authorities in Wales for infrastructure projects in July 1971 will have been taken up before the terminal date in March 1973.

Mr. Peter Thomas

The original allocation of £14 million was increased to £30 million. My Department is responsible for just over £27 million, of which about £22 million should be spent by the end of this financial year.

Mr. Hughes

The Secretary of State will recall that on 19th July 1971, when answering Questions about the extra capital allocation to be made in Wales, he said that it was to improve the infrastructure, to create employment opportunities and to make development areas more attractive to incoming industry."—[OFFICIAL REPORT, 19th July 1971; Vol. 821, c. 1030.] As none of these objectives has been achieved and matters are much worse than they were, may I ask the right hon. and learned Gentleman to consider extending the period and transferring the balance over into next year so that jobs can be kept and the real objectives which we have in mind can be attained?

Mr. Thomas

When I made that anouncement in July 1971 it was intended that there should be £14 million of extra accelerated infrastructure expenditure. That has been increased to £30 million, of which I said that £22 million will have been spent by March this year. Therefore, I do not see why the right hon. Gentleman should say that no improvement has taken place.