Direct Labour (Review)

Oral Answers to Questions — Environment – in the House of Commons at 12:00 am on 26th May 1976.

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Photo of Mr Alan Fitch Mr Alan Fitch , Wigan 12:00 am, 26th May 1976

asked the Secretary of State for the Environment if he will consider appointing a director of housing or a housing manager to the working party which was recently set up to review the operation and structure of direct labour organisations.

Photo of Mr Reginald Freeson Mr Reginald Freeson , Brent East

An assistant director in the Greater London Council's housing maintenance department attends as an observer and the working party will seek advice from other experts in this field.

Photo of Mr Alan Fitch Mr Alan Fitch , Wigan

Would it not be better for the Minister to appoint someone in a full-time capacity rather than as an observer? Does he not agree that someone with the expertise of a director of housing should be a member of the working party?

Photo of Mr Reginald Freeson Mr Reginald Freeson , Brent East

I am reluctant to increase the size of the working party. I assure my hon. Friend that the observer is a participating attender. The special representation from the local government side is nominated by the local authority associations. It includes finance officers, works directors, city engineers, county surveyors, and architects. However, I shall bear my hon. Friend's suggestion in mind should we decide to increase the size of the working party.

Photo of Mr Michael Latham Mr Michael Latham , Melton

When is the working party likely to report?

Photo of Mr Reginald Freeson Mr Reginald Freeson , Brent East

I am not in a position to say.