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Personal Finance News Payments Suspended Under The Warm Front Program

by Jim ONeil on December 20, 2010

in Personal Finance News

The Warm Front program in the UK pays up to £3,500 (£6,000 in the case of oil central heating) to low income families seeking assistance with heating and insulation expenses. Those in need receive much comfort knowing this program exists. Unfortunately, these people may now be left out in the cold because the government has suspended the heating grants.

The Department for Energy and Climate Change recently announced that payments under Warm Front had been suspended. The department allocated its £345 million budget, leaving it with no money to continue the program this tax year. Individuals who made applications through December 15 will receive funding if they are approved under the program guidelines.

Anyone who did not submit an application before Thursday will need to wait until after the new tax year begins on April 6, 2011 to receive any money. Only individuals on certain income-related or disability benefits are eligible to receive funding. The fact that some of them will have to wait until April to get money means that they may be unable to keep their homes warm during this winter.

Consumer Focus head of energy Audrey Gallacher stated that some of those most vulnerable families and disabled individuals may not be able to afford to heat their homes. Individuals who work with these populations are very disappointed that those who will suffer may be those who most need the help. This includes older people and people who are physically frail.

Other people will not be able to improve their home insulation or upgrade heating systems. This will likely make their already high heating bills even more expensive. Unless they can find a way to pay these, they may be living in very unhealthy conditions throughout the rest of the winter. The 2011 tax year budget for this program was not reported.



I shed some tears.

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