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Agricultural Land Commission

Oral Answers to Questions — Agriculture, Fisheries and Food – in the House of Commons at 12:00 am on 15th April 1957.

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Mr. Vane:

asked the Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food why the costs of management and administrative expenses and salaries should amount to more than double the cost of repairs as shown in the accounts of the Agricultural Land Commission for the year ended 31st March, 1956; and when the accounts for the succeeding year will be published.

Photo of Mr Joseph Godber Mr Joseph Godber , Grantham

There is no direct relationship between the Commission's repair costs in a particular year, its headquarters salaries, and the charges made on it for the management work of the Agricultural Land Service. The accounts of the Commission for 1956-57 will, in accordance with the usual practice, be published with its Annual Report in the autumn of this year.

Mr. Vane:

In spite of what he says, will my hon. Friend look into the figure again, because the central office expenses and management expenses are double the expense of repairs on the Commission's very expensive estates, and would appear to be excessive, even allowing for the very special position of the Commission?

Photo of Mr Joseph Godber Mr Joseph Godber , Grantham

I am quite willing to look at this again, but I really think it is not quite right to make the assumptions my hon. Friend appears to be making. I would remind him that in 1955 to 1956 the Commission made a profit on management of some £47,000 and that, for the first time since the Commission was established, the balance-sheet showed an accumulated profit on the Commission's management operations.