Committee on Finance. - Military Service Pensions (Increase) Bill, 1964: Second and Subsequent Stages.

I move that the Bill be now read a Second Time. The Bill is to provide statutory authority for the five per cent increase awarded in military service pensions—in common with other State pensions—arising from the 1963 Budget. Payment of the increases was commenced with effect from 1st November, 1963, in accordance with a Supplementary Estimate approved on 28th November, 1963. The annual cost of the increases is £33,000.

The Minister tells us that this five per cent increase arises from the 1963 Budget. Is there any proposal for a further increase in respect of what is commonly known as the ninth round?

Another five per cent.

Is that to be taken as their participation in the 12 per cent? The Minister will bear in mind that that 12 per cent increase is to cover a period of two years. May we assume that these pensions will undergo a further adjustment in order to keep them in step with the 12 per cent increase generally conceded in civilian life?

The five per cent increase was announced in the Budget and becomes effective next October. It is dealt with as quite a separate matter from any particular general round of increases. It is already provided for in the Budget.

I do not follow the Minister. He said that this five per cent arises from the 1963 Budget.

There will be another five per cent arising out of this year's Budget.

That is what I want to know. Will that require another Bill? I suppose it will unless the regulation machinery to which the Minister referred can be used.

Question put and agreed to.
Agreed to take remaining Stages to-day.