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£11m unclaimed 'bedroom tax' help returned to Govt

The spare room subsidy dubbed a "bedroom tax" has been a controversial issue since it was introduced last year Credit: Press Association

Almost £11 million offered to councils to help social housing tenants struggling to pay so-called "bedroom tax" has been returned to the Government, the Work and Pensions Secretary has said.

Iain Duncan Smith claimed it showed the discretionary payments scheme was working despite scaremongering from Labour.

Speaking in the Commons, he said: "The reality is about £11 million was returned back to the department from under spends.

"The reality is the key thing here is discretionary housing payments are there to help the most vulnerable.

"Councils should use them, we have allocated an extra pot for those who think they may run over, so there is extra money to bid for and we are very happy to entertain those bids."