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End the Warm Front system of awarding money to people on low incomes, because the scheme is not fit for purpose

Comment 7th July 2010

To end the Warm Front scheme and instead target some of the substantial amounts of money saved to each Benefit Office to enable people on low incomes to request funding for fuel efficiency savings to their homes such as;

  • Installation of insulation
  • Installation of porch
  • Installation of double glazing
  • Replacement of boiler
  • Installation of solar panels/wind turbines
  • Installation of draft-proofing

Rather than money paid direct to claimants, the money would be paid directly to the business undertaking the works. This would see stimulation for the local economy, builders etc.

Why does this matter?

The Scheme costs a huge amount of money to run, and like so many Government-run schemes, contractors just squander the money and there is little effective monitoring of the scheme. There are many complaints raised, various voluntary sector organisations have raised concerns (Help the Aged etc) but year on year the Government has directed more and more money into the scheme.

It assisted 635,000 households between June 2005 and March 2008, at a cost of £852 million. A budget of £785 million was made available for the three years commencing April 2008 but was increased to £859 million in September 2008. A further £100 million was announced by the Chancellor in November 2008.

Providing money to people on low incomes to insulate their homes, install more efficient boilers when their older models are failing, funding wall insulation etc would sound a wonderful scheme in principal. However, in reality the whole system haemorrhages money on every level and primarily the people who benefit most are the operators in recipt of the massive funding – Eaga Plc and complanies owned by Eaga Plc. The existing grants to people of £3,500 each home is not utilised in the way that the initial intentions of the scheme were established.

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