HC Deb 22 December 1971 vol 828 c1500
21. Mr. Gourlay

asked the Secretary of State for Scotland if in view of the recent increase in retirement pension, he will now make the consequential adjustments in the income levels required to qualify for a maximum rate rebate.

Mr. Buchanan-Smith

A draft order for this purpose was laid before Parliament on 14th December.

Mr. Gourlay

I appreciate the speed with which the hon. Gentleman made the order after I tabled a Question. Is he aware that the increase will hardly match the rising cost of living and the ever-increasing rate burdens arising from the Government's policies? Will he therefore undertake to make an annual review of these income levels?

Mr. Buchanan-Smith

I am grateful for the first part of the hon. Gentleman's supplementary question. He must realise that he is dealing with a Government that are always responsive to real needs The income limits are being changed for pensioners and non-pensioners alike. Over and above that, we are proposing to increase the addition for each dependent child by 50p to £2.50. It has been £2 a week since 1968. This matter is looked at when other benefits are raised.