Lords Amendment: No. 21, after Clause 32, in page 28, line 2, at end insert new Clause A—
.In Schedule 3 to the Social Work (Scotland) Act 1968 (children's panels), for paragraph 8 there shall be substituted the following paragraph—
8.—(1) A local authority may pay—
(2) A local authority may pay to a member of the Children's Panel Advisory Committee who is also a member of a body to which sections 45 and 46 of the said Act of 1973 apply—
§ Mr. Deputy Speaker (Mr. Oscar Murton)
I call attention to the fact that Privilege is involved in this amendment.
§ Mr. Millan
This amendment inserts a new clause dealing with the allowances for members of children's panels and children's panel advisory committees. It provides that local authorities may pay councillors who are members of children's panel advisory committees the same allowances as they would receive for "approved duties" under the provisions of the Local Government (Scotland) Act 1973. They may pay other members financial loss, travelling and subsistence allowances at the same rates as are paid under the provisions of the 1973 Act.
The amendment also provides that local authorities may pay all members and possible members of children's panels financial loss, travelling and subsistence allowances at the same rates as are paid under the 1973 Act.
Basically, the amendment continues the present arrangements concerning non-councillor members of children's panel advisory committees and members and possible members of children's panels. Its main purpose is to enable local authorities to pay to councillor members of children's panel advisory committees the same attendance allowances as are payable under the 1973 Act.
§ Mr. Gordon Wilson
Is it proposed that the cost of these payments, which seem reasonable in themselves, will be met out of the funds available to the local authorities or by central Government grant? In other words, will this be an additional burden on local authority expenditure?
§ Mr. Millan
It will not be an additional burden, because it continues exist- 420 ing arrangements. These payments are made, like all other payments in relation to social work—so far as I recall—by the local authorities. They are then subject to the normal rate support grant provisions.
§ Mr. Teddy Taylor
One simple question arises here, as it does on Amendment No. 45, dealing with school councils. It seems that there are to be two different systems of payment for members of children's panels and members of advisory committees. Will this mean that some members of panels will be getting £10 a day while others are only to be recompensed for loss of earnings? Will there be a difference in the tax system? This seems unusual. Would it not be better to have a standard rate for them all? Will there be a big difference, and why should there be any difference at all?
§ Mr. Millan
Councillors are not involved in the panels, as such, but only in the advisory committees. The allowance at the moment is net, because the attendance allowance of £10 for councillors is subject to tax at the standard rate—deductible before payment is made. The net payment is the same as the financial loss allowance payable to non-councillors, so the effect is basically the same. It cannot be done under the same provisions, because the attendance allowances apply only to councillors and not to other people. This is a little untidy but it is inevitable, given the terms of the 1963 Act.
§ Question put and agreed to. [Special Entry.]