Ceisteanna—Questions. Oral Answers. - County Donegal Pensioner.

7.

asked the Minister for Social Welfare if he is aware that a widow's non-contributory pension was payable to a person (name supplied) in County Donegal at the rate of £2 18s 6d per week and that on her reaching the age of 70 she qualified for an old age non-contributory pension at the rate of 30/- per week thereby losing £1 18s 6d per week as she grew older; and if he will have the matter remedied so that the pensioner's means are not so lessened.

There are two reasons for the reduction in the rate of pension payable to this pensioner when she attained the age of 70. These are an increase in the value of her capital— from £1,290 in 1967 to £1,640 in 1969 —and the difference in methods of assessment of capital for widow's pension and old age pension purposes.

The increase in capital would have necessitated a reduction of 10/- in the widow's pension payable to her if she had reported the increase.

I am not empowered to interfere with statutory decisions on claims to old age pension.