§ Mr. Cummings
To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment what representations he has received seeking the exemption of fire authorities from competitive tendering for maintenance of fire tenders, under the Local Government Act; and if he will make a statement.
§ Mr. Chope
My right hon. Friend received a number of representations on this subject. The Government announced during proceedings on the Local Government Bill on 15 February that, while we were not willing to remove references to fire vehicle maintenance from the Bill, we had decided to use the order-making powers in the Bill to exempt that activity from compulsory competition when we make the first set of regulations and orders under the Bill.