§ Sir David Steel
To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland how many times central Government capital spending consent has been refused to Scottish local authorities wishing to carry out home improvement works since November 1993.
§ Mr. Lang
Local authorities must meet the cost of home improvement works on their own stock and grants to private sector owners from within capital allocations made by the Secretary of State each year. Individual private sector improvement grants are governed by expense limits and if local authorities need to exceed these they must request approval from the Scottish Office Environment Department, explaining the justification for the exception. No requests have been refused since November 1993.