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Baroness Hanham: I thank the Minister for that reply which I shall want to read carefully before pursuing the matter further. The proposals on housing finance, how the stock transfer body is being dealt with, the payments to the Public Works Loan Commissioners and the new arrangements for improving set-aside are a major aspect of the Bill. The trouble is that the proposals are splattered among a number of clauses. I should therefore like to examine the issue more closely. I think that there are issues to which we need to return, particularly how the housing finance will work. I am grateful to the Minister for his explanation. I beg leave to withdraw the amendment.

Amendment, by leave, withdrawn.

[Amendments Nos. 106 and 107 not moved.]

Clause 40 agreed to.

Clause 41 [Payments towards local authority indebtedness]:

[Amendment No. 108 not moved.]

Baroness Maddock moved Amendment No. 109:


The noble Baroness said: The amendments to Clause 41 are similar to those to Clause 40 except that of course Clause 41 is dealing with debts that are not by the Public Works Loan Commissioners. Otherwise they are the same. I do not intend to repeat my earlier remarks. I suspect that the Minister will also give me a fairly similar reply. I beg to move.

Lord Bassam of Brighton: The amendment is the same, and I am afraid that my speaking note is

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identical—in the words of my noble friend Lord Rooker, they are "word perfect the same". We simply disagree about the mechanism and about the approach which the noble Baroness is offering. We do not think that the amendments are relevant or will help as she suggests. I am sorry, but that is it.

Baroness Maddock: I beg leave to withdraw the amendment.

Amendment, by leave, withdrawn.

[Amendments Nos. 110 to 112 not moved.]

Clause 41 agreed to.

Clause 42 agreed to.

Lord Rooker: Before I move that we adjourn, I should like to make a plea. The next group of amendments, on Clause 43, comprises one dozen amendments.

Baroness Hanham: They will not be separated.

Lord Rooker: That is my point. I am referring to tomorrow's sitting.

Baroness Hanham: Yes.

Lord Rooker: I am not talking about the subsequent sitting. I want to give proper replies. If the amendments are degrouped it causes enormous pressure for staff. All I ask is that, if they are separated tomorrow, that should be done as early as possible.

Baroness Hanham: No—

Lord Rooker: The noble Baroness might awake in the middle of the night and think, "I think I will separate some of the amendments after all". I do not want to curtail her decision. All I am saying is that, if they are separated, the earliest possible notice of that would be highly beneficial. There is no need to make a commitment on it; I simply make that plea. This may be a convenient moment for the Committee to adjourn until 3.30 p.m. tomorrow.

        The Committee adjourned at twenty-seven minutes past seven o'clock.


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