Professional Valuers

Oral Answers to Questions — Land and Natural Resources – in the House of Commons at 12:00 am on 1 November 1965.

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Photo of Mrs Margaret Thatcher Mrs Margaret Thatcher , Finchley 12:00, 1 November 1965

asked the Minister of Land and Natural Resources what estimate he has made of the number of professional valuers required to perform the duties outlined in Command Paper No. 2771; and what steps he proposes to take to secure their services.

Photo of Mr Arthur Skeffington Mr Arthur Skeffington , Hayes and Harlington

Any valuations required will be the responsibility of the Valuation Office of the Inland Revenue, but my right hon. Friend is confident that they will be able to manage.

Photo of Mrs Margaret Thatcher Mrs Margaret Thatcher , Finchley

Is not the Joint Parliamentary Secretary aware that the Valuation Office of the Inland Revenue is already very short of valuers and that this year they have had a lot of additional duties put on them? Will he give the House an assurance that he will not introduce this levy until such time as he is satisfied that there are a sufficient number of people properly to assess the quantum, bearing in mind that in certain cases there is no appeal against the quantum?

Photo of Mr Arthur Skeffington Mr Arthur Skeffington , Hayes and Harlington

My right hon. Friend is aware that there will be a burden on the Valuation Office, but the amount of valuation work in our scheme is to be kept to a minimum. For example, actual market prices will be used as far as possible. So far we have no indications to suggest that the Valuation Office will not be able to deal with these matters.

Photo of Mr John Boyd-Carpenter Mr John Boyd-Carpenter , Kingston upon Thames

Does the Joint Parliamentary Secretary's refusal to answer the Question as to how many valuers will be required mean either that he does not know or that he will not tell us?

Photo of Mr Arthur Skeffington Mr Arthur Skeffington , Hayes and Harlington

The precise number of valuers required at this stage is certainly not known, but a general estimate has been made and it was in the light of that that I gave my Answer. I shall not seek to deny the House any information that I have.