HC Deb 30 January 1959 vol 598 cc155-6W
Mr. Rippon

asked the Minister of Housing and Local Government and Minister for Welsh Affairs if he will make a statement on the rating of plant and machinery.

Mr. H. Brooke

I have received the Report of the Committee which I set up under the chairmanship of Sir Edward Ritson. It incorporates a draft revised statement of rateable plant and machinery. Copies are on sale today, and are available to hon. Members in the Vote Office. I am greatly indebted to the Committee for its careful survey.

In its main essentials, its statement follows the same principles as the current Order. But the Committee recommends some limitation in Class 1 (a) of the rateability of machinery and plant for primary transformation or main transmission of electric power; and in Class 4 correspondence, respectively; how many, in each group referred, respectively, to posters, including bulletin boards, but not trade signs, public information panels, and to trade signs on the premises of the occupiers concerned; and how many of such separate category were rejected or allowed.

Mr. Bevins

The total number of appeals decided during 1958 was 1,564. Details are as follows:

its statement includes a number of additional items of plant and machinery of both old and new types which the Committee proposes should be rated if they are in the nature of a building or structure, and omits a few other items which appear in the existing list. The Committee presents majority and minority views on proposals to exempt from rating power-operated plant which moves or rotates, and items of plant and machinery which it is the trade practice to transfer as required and which are limited in weight, size and volume.

Section 24 of the Rating and Valuation Act, 1925, empowers me to confirm the statement with or without modifications. Any representations on the Committee's recommendations should reach me not later than the end of February. It is my intention, when I have considered them, to make an Order that will take effect from 1st April next.