Twelve community-support projects in poor areas could be scrapped, saving the Government $17.4 million a year, after a review by the Social Welfare Department. Director of Social Welfare Carrie Lam Cheng Yuet-ngor told Legco's welfare panel yesterday that the Integrated Neighbourhood Projects (INPs) could be overlapping with other welfare services. She said the department was considering phasing out the INPs or 're-engineering' them under other services. 'There is a greater need for reviewing existing services to ensure no service duplication, better use of resources and more co-ordinated support to users.' The pilot projects were set up in 1999 in Shamshuipo, Yau Tsim Mong and Kowloon City after the discontinuation of Neighbourhood Level Community Development Projects. The three-year projects in old urban areas were intended to strengthen outreach services for new arrivals, the elderly and poor families. Some legislators warned that scrapping the projects would lead to a shortage of community-based services in the areas. But Mrs Lam argued that merging the services did not mean cancelling them. Democrat Wong Sing-chi said the review should also look at upgrading INP services.