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Council Tenants

Volume 447: debated on Monday 5 June 2006

To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions how many council tenants there were in each year since 1997; how many of those tenants were on housing benefit; what the cost of council tenants’ housing benefit was in each year; and from what source the cost of such housing benefits has been met since it ceased to be a charge on housing revenue accounts. (61725)

The information is in the following tables. Since 2004-05, when responsibility for payment of rent rebate subsidy passed from the then ODPM to DWP, the cost of rent rebates has been a charge to local authorities; general funds. DWP pays subsidy to local authorities for expenditure incurred on rent rebates.

Number of households in local authority rented accommodation

Thousand

Number

1997

3,263

1998

3,209

1999

3,093

2000

2,904

2001

2,879

2002

2,735

2003

2,542

2004

2,469

2005

2,250

Notes: 1. Figures come from the Survey of English Housing, and are for England only. They can be accessed at www.odpm.gov.uk. 2. They relate to the number of households in local authority rented accommodation, not the number of people in local authority rented accommodation.

Percentage of households in local authority rented properties that are receiving housing benefit

Thousand

Percentage

1996-97

66

1997-98

65

1998-99

63

1999-2000

62

2000-01

62

2001-02

61

2002-03

64

2003-04

64

Notes: 1. This information is taken from the Survey of English Housing, and is for England only. It is available at www.odpm.gov.uk. 2. As with table 1, figures relate to households, not people in local authority rented accommodation. The figures refer to financial years, rather than calendar years as in table 1.

Level of housing benefit paid to local authority tenants

£ million

Amount

1996-97

5,569

1997-98

5,495

1998-99

5,405

1999-2000

5,345

2000-01

5,259

2001-02

5,283

2002-03

5,405

2003-04

5,033

2004-05

5,208

Notes: 1. The figures presented are in £ million and reflect nominal costs for the whole of Great Britain. Figures relate to financial years. 2. They are total amounts paid to beneficiaries, irrespective of the source of funding, and include benefit spending reimbursed by DWP, spending on rent rebates financed within local authorities’ housing revenue accounts, and benefit spending financed from local authorities’ general funds. 3. They reflect the latest benefit-by-benefit estimate of out-turn, and not the amounts voted by Parliament. 4. Figures for 1999-2000 onwards are on a resource accounting land budgeting basis. There may be differences between figures quoted in these tables and those quoted in Department for Work and Pensions accounts. 5. Some figures for past years may have changed since previous publications owing to the incorporation of more up-to-date information. Also please note that from April 2003 responsibility for child benefit, guardians allowance and child’s special allowance has been transferred to Inland Revenue. 6. Figures exclude asylum seekers from April 1999, since when the National Asylum Support Service has reimbursed DWP for benefits paid to asylum seekers. 7. This information is taken from the latest published housing benefit forecasts, available at http://www.dwp.gov.uk/asd/asd4/Table8.xls