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New Clause 21 — Tax

Part of Road Safety – in the House of Commons at 1:56 pm on 18th May 2011.

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Photo of Bob Neill Bob Neill The Parliamentary Under-Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government 1:56 pm, 18th May 2011

We are dealing with part 7 of the Bill, which relates to governance in Greater London, and part 3, which relates largely to business rate matters and, I am delighted to say, has not proven controversial. I hope that part 7 will not detain us terribly long either, as a good degree of consensus was achieved in Committee and there are just one or two matters that it is necessary to debate further.

I will start with new clause 21, the lead provision in the group, and the majority of associated matters. With the exception of only two topics that I will come to in a moment, the rest of the group comprises a large number of technical amendments relating to two tax issues. Although the new clause is the first new clause listed on the amendment paper, it is not really the natural starting point, so perhaps I will be forgiven if I leapfrog over it to new clause 20, which will amend the Greater London Authority Act 1999 and require the Greater London authority to undertake certain specified activities for a commercial purpose through a taxable body. It relates to the transfer of a large number of functions of the Housing Corporation in London to the Mayor, to the movement of the London Development Agency into the GLA’s main body, and to the establishment of mayoral development corporations in London. All of those potentially involve commercial activity, so we have to get the tax treatment right.