§ Mr. R. HUDSON
asked the Minister of Transport what progress is being made by the Central Electricity Board in the duties assigned to them under the Electricity (Supply) Act of 1926?
§ Colonel ASHLEY
I have not yet received the first annual report of the Central Electricity Board and am therefore not in a position to give in detail the information desired by my hon. Friend. I may, however, say that work has, I understand, already been begun on the Central Scotland Scheme which, as my hon. Friend knows, has been adopted by the Board, and tenders for the erection of transmission lines have been received. A second scheme for South-East England has been submitted to the Board by the Electricity Commissioners, and the Board are now considering the representations which they have received from authorised undertakers. The Electricity Commissioners expect to transmit to the Board the scheme relating to Central England before the end of the year.
§ Mr. WELLS
asked the Minister of Transport if he will undertake that a public inquiry shall be held before the undertaking is controlled in any way by the Board where it can be shown that the production of electricity can be supplied at a lower cost by a local undertaking than the cost estimated by the Central Electricity Board?
§ Colonel ASHLEY
I presume that my hon. Friend refers to the powers conferred on the Central Electricity Board842W by Section 14 of the Electricity (Supply) Act, 1926. If so, I may point out that the question of relative costs, to which he refers, would, under the provisions of those Sections, fall to be determined by arbitration in default of agreement.