HC Deb 10 June 1980 vol 986 cc159-60W
Mr. Charles Morrison

asked the Secretary of State for the Environment what steps he is taking to clarify the role of local authorities in encouraging the development of industry and commerce locally, especially small businesses.

Mr. Heseltine

: I have recently consulted the local authority associations and they have agreed to take part with officials in an urgent review with the following terms of reference : To consider the means and powers currently employed by local authorities to foster industry and commerce and to encourage private sector employment within their boundaries, paying special attention to small firms, and to report, in the light of relevant national policies, including those concerned with competition and incentives for particular geographical areas as well as the Government's stance on public expenditure and its international obligations, on the most appropriate fields of action for local authorities and on any implications for legislation.

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