§ Mr. Wareing
To ask the Secretary of State for Social Services what representations he has received in respect of the regulations governing the payment of social security benefits to elected members of local authorities who may be, or are authorised to be, in receipt of attendance allowances; and if he will make a statement.
§ Mr. Scott
[holding answer 9 November 1987]: In 1986 and earlier this year previous Ministers in this Department received representations about the adverse effect of eligibility for local government attendance allowances on a councillor's entitlement to incapacity benefits. As a result a scheme was introduced last May under which exgratia payments are being made to councillors. The effect of these payments is to overcome the previous abrupt withdrawal of benefits and to ensure that councillors' available income is at least equal to the full amount of incapacity benefits payable in normal circumstances and in most cases greater.
Since May we have received three letters about the scheme and one about the effect of attendance allowances on supplementary benefit. More recently several hon. Members have drawn our attention to the impending lobby by the Association of Councillors in support of an alternative approach to the interaction of attendance allowances and incapacity benefits.
§ Mrs. Mahon
To ask the Secretary of State for Social Services what information he has as to the number of people who have died during the last year for which figures are available, whilst an application for an attendance allowance for them was(a) being considered and (b) in the process of appeal.