asked the Financial Secretary to the Treasury whether he can estimate what is the annual amount saved in respect of non-contributory old age pensions as a result of these pensioners being regarded as being in receipt of means whilst receiving treatment in hospitals and other public institutions; and whether he can take any action to reduce the burden which the stopping of payment places on the local authorities concerned?1413W
§ Lieut.-Colonel Colville
The number of non-contributory old age pensions revoked or reduced on account of the value of the maintenance and treatment received in hospitals or other public institutions is not separately recorded and accordingly particulars of the annual amount involved in such cases are not available. As regards the second part of the question, the effect of action such as my hon. Friend appears to have in mind would be to afford an additional and irregular giant in aid of the expenditure of local authorities in carrying out their statutory duties and I do not think there would be any justification for such action.