§ Mr. Strang
asked the Secretary of State for Social Services if he will give the total number of supplementary benefit claimants who requested any special heating addition or fuel allowance in 1981–82 in (a) East Lothian, (b) Musselburgh and (c) Scotland.
§ Mr. Newton
Information about the numbers of claimants requesting heating additions is not available. Nor is it possible to provide information on the number of850W heating additions in payment in East Lothian or Musselburgh without disproportionate cost. I shall, however, let the hon. Member have details of expenditure on supplementary benefit heating additions in Scotland as soon as possible. For the total amount paid this year to claimants in Scotland under regulation 26 of the Single Payments Regulations—extra consumption of fuel because of exceptionally severe weather—I refer the hon. Member to my reply of 7 July to the right hon. Member for Brent, East (Mr. Freeson).—[Vol. 27, c. 147–48.]
§ Mr. Newton
The increase of 25 per cent. in the capital disregard to £2,500 from this November will fully restore the value which it had when it was introduced in 1980. We shall continue to keep under review the effect of the level of the disregard and the operation of the rule generally.