HC Deb 15 June 1981 vol 6 c723
15. Sir Raymond Gower

asked the Secretary of State for Wales if he will take steps to remedy the anomaly whereby there is no reduction of the water charge in the case of a house or bungalow which lacks any bathroom.

Mr. Wyn Roberts

No, Sir. The lack of a bathroom would be reflected in the rateable value of the property, on which charges for water services are at present generally based.

Sir Raymond Gower

I am asking my hon. Friend to alter that undesirable state of affairs. Does he not appreciate that, by definition, houses of this sort would probably be occupied by poor people, disadvantaged families and be a section of the community that is obviously declining in numbers? Would it not be a great advantage if the Government framed policies to do what I ask? Does my hon. Friend appreciate that that would give the maximum help to those who need help most, without great expenditure?

Mr. Roberts

Levying according to the number of water fittings and appliances in a property was considered by the National Water Council. I direct my hon. Friend to the publication entitled "Charging Households for Water". The council observed that there would be considerable difficulty in making and continuing assessments.

Sir Raymond Gower