HC Deb 14 June 1906 vol 158 cc1162-3

I beg to ask the Secretary to the Treasury whether he is aware that the sum of £50,692, voted by Parliament in the 1874–5 Civil Service Estimates as a grant-in-aid of the maintenance of pauper lunatics in Irish district asylums, for the nine months ended December 31st, 1874, was surrendered to the Exchequer as an unexpended balance on March 31st, 1875, in consequence of the certified claims, based on the audited accounts to the asylums for 1874, not having been received in time to enable payment to be made before the expiration of the financial year 1874–5; that a similar sum was re-voted in the next Parliamentary Estimates, and the actual grants for the nine months ended December 31st, 1874, paid out of this vote during the year 1875; that since that time the capitation grant claims have always been paid in arrears after the audit of the asylums accounts for the previous financial year had been completed; and that on the change in the asylums financial year from December 31st to March 31st, after the passing of the Local Government (Ireland) Act, 1898, the Irish county councils defrayed the cost of maintenance of pauper lunatics for fifteen months from January 1st, 1899, to March 31st, 1900, and only received twelve months' grant-in-aid, covering the period from April 1st, 1899, to March 31st, 1900; and whether he will give instructions that the certified claims for three months thus omitted (from January 1st, to March 31st, 1899), amounting approximately to £37,000, shall be paid out of the Local Taxation (Ireland) Account direct to the various county councils, in accordance with Section 53 (2) (c), of the Local Government (Ireland) Act, 1898.


It is true that as a result of the Local Government Act of 1898 a gap of three months did occur in respect of which payment was due from the Exchequer of the Local Taxation Account. The period in question was, however, January 1st to April 1st, 1898. The hon. Member cannot be aware that a Supplementary Vote was taken in 1900, especially to repay to the Local Taxation Account the charges, amounting to £37,030, which the Account had borne during these three months. The Supplementary Estimate is contained in Parliamentary Paper No. 280 of July 17th, 1900, and attached to it is a note to which I would refer the hon. Member for a fuller explanation of this complicated Question.