Public Utility Undertakings (Prices).

Oral Answers to Questions — Trade and Commerce. – in the House of Commons on 3rd March 1942.

Alert me about debates like this

Photo of Sir Reginald Blair Sir Reginald Blair , Hendon

asked the President of the Board of Trade, whether he will consider introducing amending legislation so as to bring within the scope of the Prices of Goods Act the services rendered by statutory undertakings supplying electricity, gas and water?

Photo of Mr Hugh Dalton Mr Hugh Dalton , Bishop Auckland

Power to control the prices charged for electricity and gas during the war is vested in the Board of Trade by the Defence (General) Regulations, 1939, Numbers 55 and 56. The Ministry of Health has similar power as regards domestic water supplies. No further legislation is, therefore, required.

Photo of Sir Reginald Blair Sir Reginald Blair , Hendon

asked the President of the Board of Trade the reasons which prompted the Electricity Commissioners to decide that there were not adequate grounds for him to intervene in regard the 12½ per cent., increase in electricity charges imposed by the Northmet Power Company in February, 1940; and whether he will make further inquiry into the matter?

Photo of Mr Hugh Dalton Mr Hugh Dalton , Bishop Auckland

In February, 1940, when this increase was made, electricity undertakings still had authority to increase prices within the limits of their permitted maxima. At that time the Government Department responsible for the administration of the Electricity Acts was the Ministry of Transport. This responsibility has since passed to the Board of Trade. I have asked the Electricity Commissioners to review the financial position of this company in the light of the actual results for the year 1941, as soon as the necessary details are available.