§ Mr. MacGregor
asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer what would now be the costs of making eligible for tax relief the first £250 and first £500, respectively, of child care costs of (a) single-parent and (b) two-parent households, where both parents are working at the same time and have to incur such costs in order to do so.
§ Mr. Robert Sheldon
Information about child care costs on which to base an accurate estimate is not available, but if it were assumed that such households incurred at least £250, or £500 a year on child care expenses, the following figures would be relevant.
The cost of increasing the additional personal allowance for single parents by £250 would be about £25 million in a full year at 1978–79 income levels. An increase of £500 would cost about £45 million.
The cost of increasing the married person's allowance by £250 for all couples where the wife has earned income and where there are children, would be about £265 million at 1978–79 income levels. An increase of £500 in the allowance would cost about £520 million.