§ Lord James Douglas-Hamilton
[holding answer 20 June 1994]: In 1979–80 direct subsidies to council housing through housing support grant and rate fund contributions amounted to £286.3 million, compared with £36.1 million in 1993–94. In 1979–80, subsidies to other Scottish public sector housing amounted to £64.9 million, compared with £21.3 million in 1993–94. The reduction reflects the Government's policy of moving away from indiscriminate general subsidies.
Assistance is now targeted on tenants in greatest need through the housing benefit system. Housing benefit payments made to Scottish public sector tenants in 1993–94 totalled nearly £600 million.