§ Mr. Michael Latham
asked the Secretary of State for the Environment (1) when he anticipates that monthly local authority housing returns will once again become firm and not subject to correction at a later date because of delayed statistical returns from some areas;
(2) how many local authorities are still delaying their monthly statistical returns to the Department of the Environment of housing progress.
§ Mr. Freeson
The aim is to publish final national figures for each month by the end of the following month. At present, about 100 English and Welsh authorities do not make housebuilding returns quickly enough to meet this, but it is encouraging that final April house-building figures were published on 9th June. However, I cannot anticipate when provisional estimates will no longer be necessary, particularly in view of the reorganisation of Scottish local government last month.