HC Deb 19 December 1985 vol 89 c317W
Mr. Gordon Brown

asked the Secretary of State for Social Services if he will publish a table showing the amount of money to be saved in the first full year after transitional arrangements from the housing benefit proposals contained in Cmnd. 9691, showing the amounts to be saved (a) in applying his 20 per cent. contribution requirement for rates, (b) in help with rents and (c) in help with rates, other than the allowance for a 20 per cent. contribution.

Mr. Newton

The White Paper shows that expenditure on housing benefit is expected to be of the order of £450 million less, on the basis of the illustrative assumptions, than if no changes were made to the current scheme. About three quarters of the reduction in expenditure would arise from the 20 per cent. contribution towards domestic rates. Nearly all of the remaining savings would be in housing benefit expenditure on rents.

Mr. Gordon Brown

asked the Secretary of State for Social Services if he will estimate the cost of housing benefit in (a) 1985–86, (b) 1986–87, (c) 1987–88, (d) 1988–89 and (e) 1989–90, respectively.

Mr. Major

The figures for the total cost of housing benefit underlying the last public expenditure White Paper (Cmnd. 9428) published in January 1985, are £4,330 million in 1985–86, £4,500 million in 1986–87 and £4,600 million in 1987–88 including rate rebates which do not count as public expenditure. Up to date estimates for those years, and an estimate for 1988–89 will be included in the next public expenditure White Paper to be published in January.