§ Mr. Sweeney
To ask the Secretary of State for Wales what his proposals are for local government revenue spending in 1996–97. 
§ Mr. Hague
I propose to set total standard spending in Wales for 1996–97 at £2,867.3 million. This figure includes £149.6 million for care in the community. It represents an increase of £85.2 million, 3.1 per cent. on the comparable level of funding for 1995–96.
I propose to set central government support for total standard spending at £2,517.4 million.
I shall announce provisional standard spending assessments and provisional capping principles for Welsh police authorities later this week. At the same time, I shall announce my proposals for aggregate external finance and for damping increases in council tax arising from the reorganisation of local government from 1 April 1996. My Department will shortly write to the Welsh local authority associations to consult them on my proposals for revenue support grant in 1996–97.
I shall announce provisional standard spending assessments and provisional capping principles for unitary authorities in mid-December and my final decisions early in the new year.