New Clause 10 - Power to abolish Public Works Loan Commissioners

Part of Infrastructure Bill [Lords] – in a Public Bill Committee at 5:00 pm on 13th January 2015.

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Photo of John Hayes John Hayes Minister of State (Department for Transport) 5:00 pm, 13th January 2015

I certainly do not envisage any change to parliamentary scrutiny, because I share the hon. Gentleman’s interest in this. At present, it is perfectly proper for Parliament to consider how much is being borrowed and by which local authorities, and whether those local authorities have repaid against money that has been borrowed. That should continue to be the case. Whatever the new arrangements are, during the course of the consultation, I will personally emphasise—as I am sure the hon. Gentleman would—that those should be important requirements of the new arrangements.

Without making more ado of this, in essence I believe that the measures contained in the new clause before us allow us to complete the work of the right hon. Member for Greenwich and Woolwich. They are also in the spirit of what Sir Stafford Northcote—who was the Chancellor of the Exchequer who introduced the original Bill in 1874, which became the 1875 Act, and who died during a visit to Downing street—meant when he determined that it was right that the Government should maintain a diligent concern as to what is borrowed and what is repaid.