Councillors urge Government to tackle fuel poverty 'scandal'
MORE should be done to tackle the "scandal" of fuel poverty.
That was the view of local councillors who are urging the Government to make homes more energy efficient and to rein in soaring gas and electricity bills.
A motion put forward by Labour councillor Ros James gained unanimous support at Thursday night's full council meeting – although not before the two main parties had blamed each other for causing the crisis.
As we revealed in December, around 20 per cent of households (more than 13,500) in North East Lincolnshire are living in fuel poverty – defined as spending more than 10 per cent of their income on keeping their homes warm.
Business Cards From Only £10.95 Delivered www.myprint-247.co.ukView details
Our heavyweight cards have FREE UV silk coating, FREE next day delivery & VAT included. Choose from 1000's of pre-designed templates or upload your own artwork. Orders dispatched within 24hrs.
Terms: Visit our site for more products: Business Cards, Compliment Slips, Letterheads, Leaflets, Postcards, Posters & much more. All items are free next day delivery. www.myprint-247.co.uk
Contact: 01858 468192
Valid until: Sunday, May 26 2013
Councillor James (Lab, Heneage) told the meeting that benefit cuts being imposed by the Government would only make the situation worse and said the huge profits made by energy companies were "unjust" and "immoral".
She described the situation as "a scandal in a supposedly developed nation" and added: "We desperately need to do something before it gets any worse."
Her motion asked councillors to support an Early Day Motion (EDM) put forward by Conservative MP Peter Aldous entitled Reducing Fuel Bills Through Energy Efficiency and to support the Energy Bill Revolution campaign calling on the Government to use revenues from carbon taxes to make homes more energy efficient.
Councillor Philip Jackson (Con, Waltham) supported the motion but said he would not be taking lessons on energy policy from members of the Labour group.
He said: "The reason we have such high energy prices in this country is that during the time of the last Labour Government energy policy was neglected for over a decade and we now find ourselves approaching an energy crisis."
However, Councillor Chris Shaw (Lab, Sidney Sussex) blamed the Thatcher Government of the 1980s for destroying Britain's coal industry and making us reliant on gas supplies from overseas.
He said: "A real sensible long-term policy – when those countries saw we had no resources of our own they hiked the prices up and there's nothing we can do about it."