MP defends cuts to benefit payments
12:00pm Tuesday 29th January 2013 in News
TOIRY Banbury MP Sir Tony Baldry has defended Government welfare reforms after a council report warned they could force more into poverty.
Cherwell District Council this month said a 10 per cent cut in Government support for council tax benefit could hit those impacted by the reforms.
It said the changes could “push more people into poverty and homelessness” and they could “then turn to the council for help”.
Sir Tony said a move to cut housing benefit for social housing tenants will help working-age people “face similar choices to their counterparts in the private rented sector”.
The changes will cut the benefit up to 25 per cent if a tenant has spare bedrooms.
Sir Tony said: “It is difficult to justify why people in accommodation that is too big for their actual needs should be subsidised.”
A cap on a range of benefits to £26,000 a year will exclude payments such as council tax benefit and pension credit, he said.
And responding to Labour claims the cuts will price people out of rented properties, he said £30m of Goverment support will help “ease the transition” for councils.
Regarding calls for a cap on private rents, he said the Government is look at rent control.