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Anti-fuel poverty scheme ‘vindicated’ by price hike
10:00am Saturday 8th September 2012 in Local news
More people are being urged to use a free anti-fuel poverty scheme in Otley following the latest energy price hike.
Otley Town Council says SSE’s announcement of an inflation-busting nine per cent average increase for both gas and electricity has “fully vindicated” its decision to renew the project.
Launched at the beginning of the year, the initiative has seen the council fund a series of free advice sessions at Otley Citizens Advice Bureau to help residents save money on heating bills, access Gove-rnment grants and receive budgeting and debt advice.
More than 50 people benefited, and the council is hoping more will come forward when the sessions resume on September 18.
Councillor Kevin Cooney (Lab, West Chevin), chair-man of the environment and sustainability committee, said: “It is inevitable that the other energy companies will follow SSE’s lead, and the town council is very concerned some members of our community are really going to be struggling.
“I hope everyone who needs this service will come forward – it is a completely confiden-tial service run by our superb, local Citizens Advice Bureau.
“This scheme will, at least, help people check they are getting the best energy deal possible.”
Town council leader, Coun-cillor John Eveleigh (Lab, Ashfield), added: “I do hope many more people will come forward, and I’m appealing to the statutory and voluntary sector to make people who they come into contact with aware of this service.”
The next round of free advice sessions will run on Tuesdays from 9.30am to noon and from 1.30pm to 2.30pm, and will continue until December 11.