HL Deb 03 August 1909 vol 2 c909

My Lords, I beg to ask the President of the Board of Agriculture and Fisheries whether it is proposed to make any, and, if so, what contribution from the Exchequer towards the cost of purification of milk and eradication of tuberculosis among cattle in Scotland under the Milk and Dairies (Scotland) Bill [H.L.] and the Tuberculosis Order issued by the Board of Agriculture in May, 1909.


As the noble Earl knows, I have been in communication with the Treasury on this matter, but, as I said last week, it is a serious matter and cannot be settled offhand. It requires the most careful consideration, and I can promise the noble Earl that as soon as we can come to any agreement or I can give him any information I will not lose a moment in letting him know.


With the permission of the House I should like to say a single word. This is the third consecutive unsatisfactory answer which His Majesty's Government have made to this Question. I wish to remind the noble Earl that this is the fourth time I have put this Question, and what answer have I received? Why, no answer at all. The noble Earl cannot tell us what His Majesty's Government propose to do. Well, if His Majesty's Government cannot tell us what they propose to do with regard to a contribution towards the cost of this extremely important and expensive scheme, then at all events they cannot in decency ask this House to pass the Bill until they are prepared to give us this information. The noble Lord the Secretary for Scotland is not here to-night, and I understand from Lord Carrington that he will be here tomorrow. I therefore give notice that I shall ask the noble Lord to-morrow whether, in these circumstances, seeing that His Majesty's Government cannot give any information at all with regard to this matter, he will postpone the Third Reading of the Milk and Dairies (Scotland) Bill.

House adjourned at twenty minutes past Eight o'clock, till Tomorrow, a quarter past Four o'clock.