asked the Secretary of State for the Environment if there is any evidence to show that tenders for schemes submitted by housing associations in the West Midlands area in 1976–77 and 197778 have been increased as a result of the time taken to grant approval.
I have no evidence of this where tenders are within cost limits.216W When they are not, the need to review 31.12.80 the scheme may cause delay, and some increase in costs, but this happens only rarely.
asked the Secretary of State for the Environment what were the longest and shortest periods between the submission and approval of schemes for housing associations in the West Midlands area in 1976–77 and 1977–78; and if he will investigate how this period can be reduced.
Our records cannot provide the information sought. Ways of speeding up approval of schemes are kept under review. I have no proposals at present to make general changes to the procedures. With the approval of my right hon. Friend, the Housing Corporation has introduced a streamlined procedure for the acquisition and rehabilitation of existing property by experienced and competent associations.
If the hon. Member has a particular problem in mind and submits the details I will investigate it.