Extra support for energy crisis on the horizon


Local residents living in bands A to D who pay council tax via direct debit should have received their £150 energy rebate, and those who pay some other way should by now have received a letter giving instructions around how to make their claim.

With house prices so high in Broadstone, we know that there are many residents who do not qualify but through low incomes are finding the sharp increases in energy prices incredibly difficult to manage. We have therefore been lobbying both the council and the local MP for other ways to support households outside of this criterion.

Those residents who get the disability deduction (DD) or who qualify for Council Tax Support but live in a home banded E to H have now been given eligibility and payments are being processed. Those residents who do not meet these criteria but who receive either Pension Credit, receive a working age means-tested benefit or who can evidence that their energy costs are more than 10% of their income can now apply for a discretionary grant.

This can be accessed via the Citizen’s Advice Bureau and the forms can be accessed via this link.

We are keen to hear from other residents who are struggling with their bills, as other discretionary funds are being designed and we want to make sure they are fit for purpose. We are now supporting the Poole Food Bank through a collection at the Broadstone Liberal Hall and if you can spare non-perishable items, they can be dropped to the box in the entrance Monday-Wednesday mornings. If you need to access food, the council has developed a Community Food Map showing community fridges, pantries and foodbank locations.

As Liberal Democrats we are campaigning for a reduction in the level of VAT from 20% to 17.5% for a year, putting £600 back in the purses of residents. As inflation pushes the prices of energy, fuel and food higher the Government receives more income from tax so cutting this VAT is affordable and simple to administer.

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