HC Deb 19 July 1978 vol 954 cc514-5
6. Mr. Canavan

asked the Secretary of State for Scotland whether he is satisfied with the housing plans submitted by local authorities.

Mr. Millan

Most authorities have produced creditable housing plans, given the difficulties involved in introducing the new system. In general, however, authorities recognise that they will require to make a more thorough examination of housing needs and improve arrangements for forecasting and managing their spending programmes. My Department will be discussing these aspects with authorities.

Mr. Canavan

Is my right hon. Friend convinced that all local authorities are giving sufficient priority to building more council houses? For example, will he point out to the SNP-controlled Falkirk district council that there are more than 300 families on the waiting list in the Denny, Banknock and Bonnybridge area alone, yet it has submitted no plans to build any council houses during the current year?

Mr. Millan

I do not think that I need to point it out to the council, because this has already been done by my hon. Friend.

Mrs. Bain

In that context, will the Secretary of State look very seriously at the decision taken by Strathclyde regional council to overturn plans submitted for housing extensions in Strathkelvin district and Cumbernauld?

Mr. Millan

I really cannot answer that sort of detailed question on the general Question that is on the Order Paper at the moment.

Mr. Younger

Will the Secretary of State give an assurance that as a matter of policy he will not approve any housing plan which does not include a firm proposal for dealing with derelict council property and derelict estates, before even more of them fall into disrepair than are now falling into disrepair all over the country?

Mr. Millan

That is not happening all over the country. The position varies from one area to another. So far as there is a problem, it is taken into account in any response that I make to a housing plan.