§ Mr. Straw
asked the Secretary of State for the Environment if he will publish in the Official Report tables showing the outturn expenditure in cash, capital, current, and total, for each metropolitan district, metropolitan county, shire county in England, and each London borough and the Greater London council, Inner London education authority, and the Metropolitan police, respectively, for each of the years from and including 1978–79 to date, with the latest estimates where necessary, on a basis of consistent definitions; and if he will give details of those definitions.
§ Mr. Waldegrave
The Department uses two indices for revaluing local authority current expenditure:
- (a) an index of increases in pay and prices in the local government sector, derived from data supplied by the local authority associations; and
- (b) the gross domestic product deflator, derived from the national accounts. Cash expenditure deflated by (a) gives an estimate of the "volume" of current expenditure. Cash expenditure deflated by (b) gives estimates of expenditure in "cost" terms. Estimates of these two indices are as follows:
1978–79=100 Year Index of local authorities' pay and price changes—England GDP deflator—United Kingdom 1978–79 100.0 100.0 1979–80 115.4 116.8 1980–81 141.1 138.7 1981–82 158.3 152.4 1982–83 *169.7 162.5 * Provisional.
§ Mr. Coombs
asked the Secretary of State for the Environment what are the criteria he proposes to use when judging whether the expenditure of particular local authorities is excessive having regard to general economic conditions, as provided for in clause 2(2)(b) of the Rates Bill.
§ Mr. Waldegrave
We have not yet decided on the criteria to be used. The Bill provides that authorities spending below their grant related expenditure or below £10 million will not be selected. For those spending above GRE, the degree of overspending will be relevant; other factors may also be taken into consideration.