§ 73. Mr. G. Williams
asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer if he is aware that local authorities are in doubt whether the letter which he and the Minister of Housing and Local Government sent to them on 26th October last, concerning levels of capital expenditure up to 31st March, 1957, is, or is not, intended to convey that local government expenditure on roads should not exceed during that period the average expenditure for the period 1954–55. which period did not include any additional expenditure under the new road programme announced by the Minister of Transport and Civil Aviation on 2nd February, 1955; and whether, in view of the fact that the road programme, as already announced, is to go ahead, he will take steps to clarify his request.
§ Mr. R. A. Butler
Under the road programme, capital expenditure falling on local authorities in respect of classified roads is expected to be about £5 million in 1956–57, and there is no intention that this should be cut. The total capital expenditure of all local authorities in 1954–55 was £543 million. I cannot believe that the local authorities concerned will be unable to find room for this particular item of capital expenditure within the level contemplated in the circular.