Water Authorities

Oral Answers to Questions — Scotland – in the House of Commons at 2:12 pm on 22nd February 1995.

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Photo of Alex Salmond Alex Salmond Leader, Scottish National Party 2:12 pm, 22nd February 1995

To ask the Secretary of State for Scotland what plans he has to meet the chairmen of the new water authorities to discuss their investment plans.

Photo of Mr George Kynoch Mr George Kynoch , Kincardine and Deeside

I refer the hon. Gentleman to the answer my right hon. Friend gave earlier to the hon. Member for Angus, East (Mr. Welsh).

Photo of Alex Salmond Alex Salmond Leader, Scottish National Party

As we are about to have a discussion founded on the principle of democratic consent, can the Minister point to what area of democratic consent in Scotland justifies the removal of Scottish water from local democratic control?

Photo of Mr George Kynoch Mr George Kynoch , Kincardine and Deeside

The hon. Gentleman should realise that in Scotland over the next 10 to 15 years we have to find some £5 billion of capital expenditure to improve services. My right hon. Friend has set up structures with the intention of ensuring that we get the best value for money. We believe in ensuring that we get the best possible services at the lowest possible cost—something that the hon. Gentleman will never understand.