§ Mr. Faulds
asked the Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster whether it is his policy that, when objects accepted in satisfaction of tax are disposed of in conformity with the provisions of section 9 of the National Heritage Act 1980 to national museums and galleries following the receipt of advice from the Standing Commission on Museums and Galleries, those institutions will in no circumstances be required to make any payment in respect of the receipt of such objects.
§ Mr. St. John-Stevas
Yes. The Government have decided to abolish the rule whereby the National Land Fund—now superseded by departmental votes—was reimbursed by a national institution which was allocated an object which had been accepted in satisfaction of tax at a value less than 15 per cent. of the institution's annual purchase grant. At the same time, we are also abolishing the stage in the allocation procedures when national institutions were given the formal opportunity of making a private treaty purchase of an object which was about to be accepted in satisfaction of tax. In recent years the majority of items accepted in satisfaction of tax has been allocated to local museums, and I and my colleagues will make sure that the abolition of the reimbursement rule does not adversely affect these museums.