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21 Feb 2005 : Column 92W—continued

Benefit Claims

Mr. Flight: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what the average time taken to process a claim for council tax benefit was in each year for which figures are available. [215247]

Mr. Pond: Average processing times are only available for new claims for council tax benefit. Figures are not available prior to April 2000. The available information is in the following table.
Average number of days to process new council tax benefit claims, Great Britain: April 2000 to September 2004

April to June 200446
July to September 200447

(30)2004–05 data is available for the first two quarters only.
1.The figures are rounded to the nearest whole day.
2.The figures are taken from April to March each year and are four quarter averages.
Housing Benefit Management Information System Quarterly Administration Returns April 2000 to September 2004.

Mr. David Marshall: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions (1) how many people claimed job seekers' allowance in each constituency in Scotland in the latest period for which figures are available; [215386]

(2) how many people claimed income support in each constituency in Scotland in the latest period for which figures are available. [215388]

Mr. Pond: The information is in the following table.
Income support (IS) and jobseekers allowance (JSA) claimants in Scotland by parliamentary constituency, as at August 2004.

ISAllContribution-based onlyIncome-basedCredits-only
Aberdeen Central3,3001,300*400800*100
Aberdeen North2,500700*200500
Aberdeen South2,100700*100600(31)
Airdrie and Shotts4,7001,500*4001,000*100
Argyll and Bute2,1001,000*100800*100
Banff and Buchan2,600900*200600*100
Caithness Sutherland and Easter Ross1,8001,100*300700*100
Carrick Cumnock and Doon Valley3,7001,600*2001,200*200
Central Fife3,8002,000*3001,600*200
Clydebank and Milngavie3,2001,200*200900*100
Coatbridge and Chryston3,7001,300*2001,000*100
Cumbernauld and Kilsyth2,9001,000*200600*200
Cunninghame North3,1001,700*3001,300*100
Cunninghame South4,1002,7005001,900*300
Dundee East4,6002,000*2001,700(31)
Dundee West4,3001,800*4001,300*200
Dunfermline East3,0001,700*3001,300*100
Dunfermline West2,2001,200*1001,000*100
East Kilbride2,6001,400*400800*200
East Lothian2,500800*300*300*100
Edinburgh Central3,2001,200*300700*200
Edinburgh East and Musselburgh4,4001,400*2001,000*100
Edinburgh North and Leith3,7001,400*3001,000*100
Edinburgh Pentlands2,7001,000*100700*100
Edinburgh South2,3001,000*200700*100
Edinburgh West2,2001,000*200800(31)
Falkirk East2,4001,100*300700*100
Falkirk West3,3001,400*3001,100*100
Galloway and Upper Nithsdale2,400900*100700*100
Glasgow Anniesland5,3001,500*2001,200*100
Glasgow Baillieston6,0001,500*2001,100*100
Glasgow Cathcart5,0001,400*300900*200
Glasgow Govan5,4001,800*3001,300*100
Glasgow Kelvin4,4001,700*1001,500*100
Glasgow Maryhill7,2002,100*3001,700*100
Glasgow Pollok5,4001,400*2001,100*100
Glasgow Rutherglen4,4001,200*1001,000*100
Glasgow Shettleston8,6002,400*3002,000*200
Glasgow Springburn6,8002,700*3002,300*100
Greenock and Inverclyde3,8002,3006001,500*200
Hamilton North and Bellshill4,0001,500*3001,100*100
Hamilton South3,6001,400*2001,100*100
Inverness East Nairn and Lochaber2,200800*200500*100
Kilmarnock and Loudoun3,9002,000*2001,600*100
Motherwell and Wishaw4,2001 ,600*3001,200*100
North East Fife1,100900*200*400*300
North Tayside2,0001,100*200700*100
Orkney and Shetland800500*100*300*100
Paisley North4,9001,600*4001,100*100
Paisley South3,9001,400*3001,000*100
Ross Skye and Inverness West2,7001,200*200700*200
Roxburgh and Berwickshire1,800500*100*400(31)
Strathkelvin and Bearsden2,000900*100700*100
Tweeddale Ettrick and Lauderdale1,300500*200*200*100
West Aberdeenshire and Kincardine1,300600*200*300(31)
West Renfrewshire2,6001,200*300800*100
Western Isles700600*100*400(31)

(31)—denotes nil or negligible
1.Figures are rounded to the nearest hundred. Totals may not sum due to rounding.
2.Numbers marked *" are based on very few sample cases and are subject to a high degree of sampling variation. These figures should be used as a guide to the current situation only.
3.Income-based JSA figures include claimants who would also be entitled to the contributory element.
Information Directorate, 5 per cent. sample.

21 Feb 2005 : Column 95W

Benefit Payments (Chorley)

Mr. Hoyle: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions how many pensioners in Chorley constituency received the winter fuel allowance in 2004–05; and what total amounts such payments represented in that year. [216200]

Malcolm Wicks: Information is not yet available for winter 2004–05. Information about the number of payments at each rate to people in the Chorley constituency for winter 2003–04 is in the Library. We would expect the number to be similar for this winter.

Mr. Hoyle: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions how many pensioners in Chorley constituency have received pension credit in each year since it was introduced. [216201]

Malcolm Wicks: The information is given in the table. Further information on numbers of households and individuals in receipt of pension credit and average awards at 31 December 2004 is contained in the most recent quarterly pension credit progress report, which was published on 3 February. A copy of the report is in the Library.
Pension credit recipients, Chorley, 2003–04

As at December:HouseholdsIndividuals

1.Figures are rounded to the nearest five.
2.Figures relate to the end of the month.
3.Individuals comprise claimants and partners and may contain a small number of partners aged under 60.
4.Pension credit replaced minimum income guarantee from 6 October 2003.
5.Parliamentary constituencies are assigned by matching postcodes against the relevant ONS directory.
6.The figures for December 2004 are the latest available.
IAD Information Centre, Department for Work and Pensions, 100 per cent. sample

Benefits Agency

Mr. Laurence Robertson: To ask the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions what guidance his Department gives to the Benefits Agency on steps to be followed in relation to payment of income support when the Agency has made an error in calculation; and if he will make a statement. [214844]

Mr. Pond: The administration of Jobcentre Plus is a matter for the Chief Executive of the Jobcentre Plus, David Anderson. He will write to the hon. Member.

Letter from David Anderson to Mr. Laurence Robertson, dated 17 February 2005:

21 Feb 2005 : Column 96W

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