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Local Government Finance: Coastal Areas

Volume 461: debated on Monday 4 June 2007

To ask the Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government what plans her Department has to provide for the additional social costs of higher than average aged populations of the larger coastal urban areas. (139666)

Older peoples' social services are funded by general formula grant and from councils’ own revenues raised from council tax or fees and charges. We take account of the relative needs of different areas to provide older people's social services during the calculation of formula grant.

Within the calculation of formula grant, there is a relative needs formula for older people's social services. The resident population are the main driver of the formula with additional elements to take into account other factors related to need, including the number of very elderly people in each area.

The formula is calculated using data on the number of people aged 65 and over resident in each area, and pensioners living alone, over 65s in receipt of pension credit and attendance allowance, pensioners who live in rented accommodation and those aged 90 and over in each area.

We expect to update the data we use in the relative needs formulae for the 2008-09 settlement, where possible. This will ensure that the calculations reflect changes in demographic and other trends in each local authority.