HC Deb 09 May 2002 vol 385 c301W
Mr. Frank Field

To ask the Secretary of State for Transport, Local Government and the Regions what the estimated level of losses to fraud and corruption was in(a) his Department's Vote 1 budget and (b) his Department's Vote 2 budget for (i) 1999–2000 and (ii) 2000–01. [54708]

Mr. Byers

The only proven loss due to fraud or corruption for which my Department is accountable is a theft of £20 from a cash box. This was accounted for in the Class III Vote 1 Appropriation Account for 1999–2000.

This does not include any loss suffered by any non-departmental public body funded from either vote where their accounts are prepared separately and laid before Parliament and published separately.

Nor does it include any losses due to fraud in rent rebates. Rent rebates granted to local authority tenants are reimbursed through Housing Revenue Account Subsidy, for which this Department has overall responsibility. Rent rebates are analogous to rent allowances paid in respect of tenants of private landlords, and together they comprise housing benefit.

Responsibility for housing benefit policy, including policy on fraud, lies with DWP. A full note on the implications of housing benefit fraud for HRA subsidy is appended to the Appropriation Account for Vote 1 for each of the years concerned.