HC Deb 22 December 1916 vol 88 cc1857-8W

asked the Chief Secretary for Ireland whether he is aware that a feeble old man, 79 years of age, named James Casey, residing at Loughaterick, Woodford, county Galway, in receipt of an old age pension (5s.) applied for an additional allowance of 2s. 6d., which was granted by the Loughrea pension subcommittee but appealed against by the pension officer and upheld by the Local Government Board on the ground that his means were in excess of 12s. 6d. a week; whether he is aware that Casey eked out an existence by begging from house to house until he became too feeble to continue, and that he was then given shelter in the house of Luke Duffy, who is himself an old age pensioner; and if he will explain on what ground the Local Government Board decided against the claim of this man?


The Local Government Board inform me that it is not Luke Duffy himself but his mother who is an old age pensioner, and that Luke Duffy himself keeps a comfortable homo He is a relative of the pensioner James Casey, and gives him free support in return for labour. The Board decided that Casey's means, including his pension, debarred him from receiving the additional grant.


asked the Secretary to the Treasury whether, before the Prorogation, he can make a statement as to the number of old age pensioners who have been granted additional allowances; whether there is any delay being experienced in settling applications for additional allowances; whether there is any accumulation of applications; and whether there is any difference in the method of estimating means other than was adopted in investigating applications for the original pensions, so far as capital possessions are concerned?


The latest figures available show the progress of the work of granting additional allowances to old age pensioners up to the 9th instant inclusive Up to that date 650,862 applications had been received; of these, 581,020 had been investigated by the pension officers and submitted to the local pension committees and sub-committees; and these authorities had awarded allowances to 419,581 pensioners. With reference to the last part of the question, the position is that in the case of pensioners who obtained their pensions before the coming into force of the Old Age Pension Act, 1911, the means from capital were estimated when the pensions were granted under the provisions of the 1908 Act, whereas for additional allowance purposes the means are estimated in all cases under the 1911 Act.


asked the Chief Secretary for Ireland if he will take steps to have the case of Anne M'Grath, Bawnreagh, Carrick-on-Suir, for an application for an old age pension, re-considered by the pension authorities?


The Local Government Board decided in September last that the claimant's means exceeded the statutory limit. This decision cannot be reopened, but it is open to the claimant to make a fresh application.