§ Mr. Teddy Taylor
asked the Secretary of State for the Environment what is the effect of the decision on national funding of debt charges incurred by local councils on demolishing council houses on the city of Liverpool; what will be the effect of these changes on possible rate support grant penalties by the city; and if he will make a statement explaining the manner in which this policy decision was arrived at and announced.53W
§ Mr. Patrick Jenkin
Under the Housing Act 1980 it has always been open to any authority to apply for special determination to allow debt charges on demolished council houses to be admissible for housing subsidy purposes, but no such determinations have been made under the Act to date.
I am now, however, intending to adjust the Department's approach so that such applications would be considered more sympathetically in future. I am consulting the local authority associations about the considerations which will normally apply when dealing with applications for special determinations from 1984–85 onwards.
The financial effects of this nationally cannot be calculated in advance but are unlikely to be other than marginal. The change of rule was under consideration before my recent meetings with Liverpool city council; the change, of course, will apply to all councils in receipt of subsidy who qualify. There is no special concession of any kind to Liverpool