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Council Tax

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 5:53 pm on 15th June 1995.

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Photo of Mr Patrick Nicholls Mr Patrick Nicholls , Teignbridge 5:53 pm, 15th June 1995

My right hon. Friend is entirely right. Not only were different sets of figures produced but, in due course and if necessary, Devon county council will produce different figures again.

The settlement has not been easy, but Devon was treated better than some counties. I hope that, in the end, parents in Devon will come to understand that, as long as we have a system under which functions are split, it is not sufficient to make the easy judgment that it must be the Government of the day who are to blame. Rightly or wrongly, for the time being we have a system under which the discharge of education obligations is shared by local and national Government. To judge by the figures, there is no doubt that the Government have played their part. Even without being able to understand every jot and tittle of the figures, one has only to consider the dishonest way in which the matter was presented in Devon to realise the truth.