Responding to the Spring Budget today, Hinckley and Bosworth Lib Dems have condemned the Government's plans to increase energy bills as "so out of touch they might as well be on a different planet."
It comes as Jeremy Hunt has confirmed that energy bills will remain at £2,500 for the next three months, meaning the typical household energy bill will be double what it was in April 2021. The Chancellor also scrapped the £400 discount on bills which all households received this winter and failed to U-turn on plans to slash energy bill support for businesses, leisure centres, schools and hospitals by 85%.
The Liberal Democrats are calling on the Chancellor to cut the Energy Price Guarantee by £500 per household, funded through a proper windfall tax on the record profits of oil and gas companies. This would mean average bills would drop to £1,971 a year, with the support in place until next April.
The Liberal Democrats are also calling extra targeted support for the least well-off households, including doubling the Warm Homes Discount to £300.
Analysis from the Lib Dems based on official local electricity and gasconsumption statistics show that households in Hinckley and Bosworth would save an average of £318.58 under the party's plans. This would mean total savings of local families.
Commenting Liberal Democrat parliamentary Spokesperson for Hinckley and Bosworth Councillor Michael Mullaney said:
"The Conservatives government's choice to hike energy bills will come as a hammer blow to families in Hinckley and Bosworth already struggling with soaring mortgages and rents, shopping bills and tax rises.
"These plans will push more families into fuel poverty, while oil and gas companies making record profits are let off the hook.
"The Conservatives are so out of touch they might as well be on a different planet.
"In these tough times, local people deserve a proper plan to tackle this cost-of-living crisis. That means a proper windfall tax, a £500 cut to energy bills and investment in our local health services."
Nationally, the Liberal Democrats have set out their plan to tackle the energy crisis including:
A windfall tax on oil and gas companies to raise billions of pounds
Cutting the Energy Price Guarantee by £500 to £1,971 - the same level as they were last April
A one-off bonus tax on oil and gas executives
Doubling the Warm Homes Discount to £300 and the Winter Fuel Payment
A U-turn on plans to slash energy bill support for businesses, leisure centres, schools and hospitals by 85%, and instead extend current levels of support for another six months
A Hinckley County Councillor has renewed calls for a safe road crossing to be installed near a Hinckley School.
Lib Dem Councillor for Hinckley De Montfort Michael Mullaney has campaigned with local parents, residents and fellow Hinckley Councillors David Bill and Stuart Bray to get a safe crossing near St Peter’s School on London Road, Hinckley.
This follows news that Leicestershire County Council have again decided against putting a crossing there.
In a written submission to the County Council’s Highways and Transport Scrutiny Committee Michael Mullaney set out why a crossing was still needed there
“A huge number of residents in the area I represent on the County Council and the area my two fellow Hinckley County Councillors David Bill and Stuart Bray represent support a safe crossing at St Peter’s School on London Road in Hinckley. 8,850 residents signed a petition supporting the campaign.
“There are safety concerns, there have been a number of near misses involving pupils and parents going to the school. Although not recorded it is believed that there was an accident leading to a fatality some years ago along this part of London Road when a pedestrian was knocked over.
“Whilst I appreciate the extra road safety measures that are proposed for London Road near St Peter’s School I am extremely disappointed that the request for a safe road crossing has not been supported in the report.
“There is widespread support for it and Cllrs Bill, Bray and myself identified funding for putting a crossing in at the site through the Members Highway Fund, a fund which was developed with the apparent intention of supporting Highways causes that were important in Councillor’s local areas.
“Whilst it’s welcome that a crossing person has been recruited for St Peter’s School there is always the risk that the person may step down from the job and it may be difficult to find a new person (as it took some years to recruit a crossing person there, with no school crossing patrol between 2017 and 2022 despite attempts to recruit to the post). A safe pedestrian crossing at the site however would be a permanent safety measure that would benefit pupils and parents and residents more generally crossing the road there.
“Whilst I welcome the fact there will be some safety improvements at the site I and many residents believe there still needs to be a safe permanent crossing at St Peter’s School. I therefore urge the County Council to rethink and agree to installing a crossing near St Peter’s School”