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Social Services (Expenditure)

Volume 641: debated on Friday 5 May 1961

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asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer if he will state the total estimated expenditure on the social services, current and capital, in the years 1959–60 and 1960–61 by the Exchequer, the National Insurance Fund and local authorities, respectively.

The figures in the table below cover expenditure on education, child care, school meals and milk, welfare foods, health services, National Insurance, National Assistance, War Pensions, Non-Contributory Pensions, and Family Allowances. They also include housing. To avoid double counting, grants from the Exchequer to the National Insurance Funds and to Local Authorities are excluded from the figures given for Central Government Expenditure.

£ million
1959–601960–61
Central Government:
Current expenditure1,2121,337
Capital expenditure5460
National Insurance Funds:
Current expenditure1,034*1,089*
Local Authorities:
Current expenditure1,007†1,097†
Capital expenditure400397
Total, all authorities, current and capital3,7073,980
* Grants from the Exchequer to the National Insurance Funds were £185 million in 1959–60 and £187 million in 1960–61.
† Grants from the Exchequer to Local Authorities, mainly in respect of social services expenditure and housing, totalled £565 million in 1959–60, and £658 million in 1960–61.

asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer if he will state the estimated percentage of the national income to be spent by all public authorities on the social services in 1960; and what were the corresponding figures for 1951 and 1959.

Total current and capital expenditure by all public authorities on social services and housing in 1960 is estimated at about 17·5 per cent. of the gross national product (at factor cost). The corresponding figures for 1951 and 1959 were 16·1 per cent. and 17·3 per cent. respectively.

asked the Chancellor of the Exchequer if he will give an estimate of the percentage of central Government revenue devoted to current expenditure on the social services for the years 1959–60 and 1960–61.

Current expenditure by the Central Government on the social services and housing, including grants to the National Insurance Funds but excluding grants to local authorities, was 23·1 per cent. of Central Government revenue (excluding National Insurance contributions) in 1959–60 and about 23·7 per cent. in 1960–61. If current grants to local authorities, which are mainly but not exclusively for social services are also included, the corresponding figures are 32·4 per cent. and 33·9 per cent. Central Government revenue has been defined as in Table 37 of the National Income Blue Book for 1960, which differs in several respects from the Exchequer receipts "above the line".