HC Deb 22 March 1988 vol 130 c83W
Mr. Holt

To ask the Secretary of State for Social Services what proposals he has, in the light of the mild winter and savings in the cost of special cold weather payments, to reduce domestic fuel costs for those persons aged over 80 years on income support.

Mr. Scott

This winter exceptionally cold weather payments have been made available at 78 DHSS local offices in England, Scotland and Wales. Like all previous severe weather schemes, the current arrangements are intended to provide extra help with heating costs only during periods of exceptionally cold weather. The longterm cost of such schemes has always been estimated on this basis.

The levels of fuel prices are a matter for the fuel industries concerned. However, income support claimants will get a weekly benefit out of which to meet all their day-to-day expenses, including fuel costs. Premiums will be available to certain groups with particular needs. All pensioners will he entitled to a premium, but those aged 80 or over will receive a higher rate.

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