Economic Planning Councils (Recommendations)

Oral Answers to Questions — Economic Affairs – in the House of Commons at 12:00 am on 4th April 1968.

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Photo of Sir Gerald Nabarro Sir Gerald Nabarro , Worcestershire South 12:00 am, 4th April 1968

asked the Secretary of State for Economic Affairs whether he will introduce legislation to facilitate appeals by economic development councils in event of disagreement between them and himself on the recommendations of such councils.

Mr. Alan Williams:

No, Sir.

Photo of Sir Gerald Nabarro Sir Gerald Nabarro , Worcestershire South

Is it not a fact that these development councils are Ministerial creatures of the right hon. Gentleman, and that he appoints them? As the majority of them now are making recommendations which are totally contrary to Ministerial policy, who is to arbitrate in the matter, or is the Minister finally arrogating to himself the position or an economic gauleiter without any regard to the recommendations of his Midlands Council?

Mr. Williams:

I assume that the hon. Gentleman means economic planning councils, not development councils. He should bear in mind that there is no such body as the one to which he refers in his Question. These are advisory bodies, and the Government, in the last resort, have to make decisions in the light of the interests of the whole country, not just the self-interest of individual localities, which is what the hon. Gentleman is pursuing.

Photo of Sir Gerald Nabarro Sir Gerald Nabarro , Worcestershire South

In view of that very unsatisfactory reply, I beg to give notice that I shall raise the matter on the Adjournment.