HC Deb 15 March 1956 vol 550 cc71-2W
109. Mr. Page

asked the Minister of Housing and Local Government whether he is now in a position to publish a White Paper giving comparative tables of rateable values in the new valuation lists as deposited with rating authorities, and in the current lists as at 1st December, 1955.

Mr. Sandys

In accordance with my earlier undertaking, I am today presenting to Parliament a White Paper which provides preliminary information about the effects of the new valuations for rating in England and Wales.

The figures given are not final, since the new assessments are subject to appeals which may be lodged after 1st April; and the trend of the appeal decisions will not become evident for a number of months.

Moreover, the picture is slightly distorted by the fact that the revaluation of Crown property has not yet taken place. This will be carried out during the coming year and is bound to result in some reduction in the percentage share of the total rateable value of other types of property.

Furthermore, as has been announced, the Government are at present reviewing the problem of local authority finance in all its aspects. This is the most comprehensive review of its kind since 1929, and will include an examination of the system of de-rating. This will involve much detailed study and important decisions of policy; and, when the appropriate stage is reached, it will entail consultation with the representatives of local authorities. Until this whole review is complete, it will not be possible to arrive at a final appreciation of the future incidence of the rate burden.