Schedule 3. — (Rating of Unoccupied Property.)

Local Government (Scotland) Bill – in the House of Commons at 12:00 am on 9th November 1966.

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Amendment made: No. 66, in page 33, line 34, at end insert: 'and the notice shall be deemed to be withdrawn'.—[Dr. Dickson Mabon.]

Photo of Dr Dickson Mabon Dr Dickson Mabon , Greenock

I beg to move Amendment No. 67, in page 34, to leave out lines 14 and 15 and to insert: (6) In the application of section 349 of the Local Government (Scotland) Act 1947 to the service of notices under this paragraph, any reference to sending a notice by post shall be construed as a reference to sending it by registered post or by the recorded delivery service. The Bill at present provides that the completion notice may be served by post. The Amendment requires that it shall be sent by registered post or recorded delivery since the latter provides a cheap and secure method of transmission. This was a suggestion I made to myself in Committee. I am very glad that we have adopted it.

Amendment agreed to.

Photo of Dr Dickson Mabon Dr Dickson Mabon , Greenock

I beg to move Amendment No. 68, in page 35, line 8, to leave out from the first 'to' to end of line 9 and to insert: 'a newly erected building or dwelling-house include references to a building or dwelling-house produced by the structural alteration of a building included in relevant lands and heritages which by virtue of paragraph 5 of this Schedule have ceased or will cease to exist on the completion of the structural alteration and, in relation to a building or dwelling-house so produced, references to erection of a building shall be construed as references to the structural alteration producing it'. Hon. Members who served on the Standing Committee will recall that at the seventh sitting we discussed an Amendment pressed on us by the Opposition to exempt empty property from rating so long as its vacant stage was caused by the owners carrying out modifications or improvements. I touched on this during our earlier discussion. I think that the Amendment commends itself to the Opposition and I hope that it will be incorporated into the Bill.

Photo of Mr Gordon Campbell Mr Gordon Campbell , Moray and Nairnshire

We touched on this matter briefly on an earlier Amendment. I must again make it clear that this is a separate question. If structural alterations are taking place which will result in a house or flat disappearing completely, it is reasonable that it should be exempted from rates in this way. That is different from our proposal which is that there should be exemption where improvements to a house or flat were taking place as a result the period of three months was continued. The Amendment does not meet our point, but it meets another point, and we accept it.

Amendment agreed to.