Select Committee on Environmental Audit Minutes of Evidence

Examination of Witnesses (Questions 140 - 142)



  140. It is quite easy to do though, is it not? We know what a business is and we know what a residential property is.
  (Mr Timms) It introduces an additional complication into the system which is not there at the moment and it is not something I would favour.

  141. It is not terribly complicated, is it?
  (Mr Timms) There are complications and complications. It is one we could do without.

Mr Thomas

  142. May I briefly tease out some further ideas about what constitutes a deprived area? You mentioned the DETR's list of wards with deprivation but you will also be aware that there are four areas in the United Kingdom which have been acknowledged as being deprived areas by the Government, which are the Objective 1 areas. Those are the four areas which the Government has put forward to the European Union for particular regional assistance, saying these are our most deprived areas, larger areas than a ward I accept. There is one in Wales and three in England. Will those qualify for this relief as well?
  (Mr Timms) There will need to be a ward by ward assessment and I have no doubt at all that many wards in those areas will meet whatever the threshold eventually turns out to be. I would not anticipate a blanket passport so that anything which happens to be in an Objective 1 area automatically benefits from this. It will not work like that, it will be an assessment made on a ward by ward basis.

  Chairman: I wanted to ask you a few questions about your role as a Green Minister inside the Treasury but I am conscious that we have had a very lengthy session so I shall put these down in writing, if I may. To your relief no doubt. It remains for me to thank you for coming to the Committee. We have had a very helpful and very meaty session.

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