Does not the Under-Secretary accept, against the background of that answer, that he should approach the South of Scotland Electricity Board in the same manner as the electricity boards here in England have been approached, to ask the board to reconsider its attitude towards payments of arrears and deposits required? I appreciate the position of the board and I know of the bad debts it has at the present time. I am only asking the hon. Gentleman to consider that an approach
There have been recommendations for changes in the law, but changes in the law involve this House and, therefore, the recommendations, when they come forward in legislation, will be considered on their merits in this House.
The hon. Gentleman knows that this is a very difficult problem. The bad debts of the South of Scotland Electricity Board are running at around £400,000 per year and they have to be carried by those consumers who do pay their accounts. Consultations are going on between the local authorities and the board, and I hope that a solution can be found to help in this difficult situation.