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The Land


    Fully accepting the views of the Scott and the Uthwatt Committees as to the need for correlating policy, the Government has decided, Sir William said, in view of the importance of maintaining Parliamentary responsibility, to ask Parliament to constitute a separate Ministry of Town and Country Planning. This Minister will be a member of the Ministerial Committee already supervising reconstruction policy, and there are also important functions for which a permanent commission, acting under the Minister of Town and Country Planning, will be the most appropriate body. The Government has reached no decision as to the acquisition by the State of development rights in all undeveloped land or on a levy on increases in annual site values, but it is proposing in forthcoming legislation to confer wide and simple powers on local authorities for the compulsory acquisition of land. In regard to food, Sir William said that the wise developments of the last few years should not be abandoned after the War. Close attention is being given to the formulation of a permanent post-war agricultural policy, on which the Dominions will be consulted. A really vigorous forestry policy will be adopted after the War, for which the Forestry Commission has been instructed to formulate a programme. Sir William also referred to the organization of electricity supply on the most efficient basis, to the close review of water supply, and finally to the place of education in reconstruction.

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