Cost of living payment news: Energy cap rises to record level as support bill soars

Autumn Budget: Chancellor increases energy windfall tax to raise extra £14bn

The energy price cap has increased to record levels hiking the cost the government will pay to cover energy bills support.

Ofgem has increased the price cap to 67p per unit for electricity and 17p for gas from January.

The decision will not impact the amount households pay for their energy because the government has said electricity will cost 34p per unit and gas will be 10.3p until April.

Without the government support the average household would be paying around £4,279 for its energy under the new cap. The support will ensure that average households pay £2,500.

Experts at energy consultancy Auxilione estimate the new cap will cost the government around £15.1 bn to subsidise household bills between January and March.

It is set to add to the massive strain faced by the public purse in coming months due to soaring gas prices.

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B&Q sales boosted by sales of energy efficiency products

B&Q parent firm Kingfisher has revealed that sales of loft insulation materials have more than doubled as customers seeking to improve energy efficiency in their homes helped to boost the retail group.

The company, which also owns Screwfix, recorded higher revenues over the past quarter as the DIY market also benefited from the continued shift towards home working.

Chief executive Thierry Garnier said: “While the market backdrop remains challenging, DIY sales continue to be supported by new industry trends such as more working from home and a clear step-up in customer investment in energy saving and efficiency.”

B&Q reported that sales of loft insulation roll increased by 108 per cent for the three months to 31 October, compared with the same period last year, as customers sought to offset rocketing energy prices.

(PA Wire)

Thomas Kingsley24 November 2022 10:00

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Government energy saving advice ‘not nannying,’ Gove says

A public information campaign to encourage people to save energy will not be “nannying or patronising”, a senior minister said.

The scheme could show households how to knock up to £420 off their bills, while at the same time delivering potentially huge savings for taxpayers by reducing the cost of the energy price guarantee.

Levelling Up secretary Michael Gove said the government would be pointing people towards “authoritative sources of advice” on managing energy usage.

The Times reported that ministers are preparing a £25 million public information campaign including advice such as switching off radiators in empty rooms and taking showers instead of baths.

Officials have identified eight changes to save up to £420 a year including reducing the flow temperature from boilers, switching electrical devices off rather than leaving them on standby and changing from baths to showers.

Thomas Kingsley24 November 2022 09:40

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Housing secretary in talks with Rochdale Boroughwide Housing

Housing secretary Michael Gove said he would be holding talks with Rochdale Boroughwide Housing, which owned the flat linked to Awaab Ishak’s death.

He told BBC Breakfast: “The chief executive after this tragic case has resigned, I’m going to Rochdale later today in order to talk to them and talk to others about the situation there. But my view at the moment is this organisation does not deserve to get this additional funding.”

Asked if the organisation should still be operating at all, he said: “I’m going to talk to them later today. I’ve had conversations already with the chair of the organisation and conversations with the outgoing chief executive and I want to see the situation on the ground.

“If the penny has dropped, if the organisation is ready to learn appropriate lessons to improve and there are signs they fully appreciate the need to improve, we will work with them, and indeed with Rochdale council, in order to make improvements.”

Awaab Ishak who died in December 2020 (Family handout/PA)

Thomas Kingsley24 November 2022 09:18

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Tens of thousands of homes ‘unsafe,’ Michael Gove says

Housing secretary Michael Gove said “at least” tens of thousands of homes are unsafe.

He told BBC Breakfast: “I fear it’s the case that there are tens of thousands of properties that are not in the state that they should be.”

Pressed if tens of thousands was correct, he said: “Yes, at least.

“We know there are a significant number of properties – some of which were built in the 60s and 70s and are in poor conditions, but some of which have been poorly maintained – that simply need to be properly repaired and properly maintained.”

Thomas Kingsley24 November 2022 08:50

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Negotiations ‘key’ to resolve rail strikes, Michael Gove urges

Levelling-Up secretary Michael Gove stressed that negotiations are key to avert strikes after transport secretary Mark Harper said he would not negotiate with the rail union boss.

Mr Gove told TalkTV: “The way to resolve some of these disputes is through talking, through negotiation, through listening.

“And it will be the case the transport secretary, my friend Mark Harper, will be meeting Mick Lynch, the general secretary of the RMT, later today to talk about this.

“I hope the two of them and others can hep set the framework so the people who are actually the key negotiators, the railway bosses, can find a way through with Mr Lynch.”

Thomas Kingsley24 November 2022 08:35

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There must be no ‘whitewash’ in Raab bullying probe, Angela Rayner says

Deputy Labour leader Angela Rayner said: “There must be no hint of a whitewash when it comes to the slew of serious allegations the deputy prime Minister now faces.

“The scope of this investigation must immediately be expanded to enable proactive investigation of Dominic Raab‘s behaviour during his time as a minister, including so-called expressions of concern, informal complaints and the concerning testimony of his own former permanent secretary.

“This Conservative government has a troubling track record of brushing serious misconduct under the carpet. Their refusal to act on findings against Priti Patel previously led their former ethics chief to quit in disgust.

“A temporary stop-gap investigator, appointed in a panic, with an absurdly narrow remit is not a solution to dealing with the flood of allegations of ministerial misconduct now requiring investigation.”

(EPA/Getty)

Thomas Kingsley24 November 2022 08:15

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In the latest cost of living news, the price that government will have to pay to support households with their energy bills is set to increase from January as Ofgem increased its energy price cap to 67p per unit for electricity and 17p for gas.

The decision will not impact the amount households pay for their energy because the government has said electricity will cost 34p per unit and gas will be 10.3p until April.

Without the government support the average household would be paying around £4,279 for its energy under the new cap. The support will ensure that average households pay £2,500.

Energy is charged per unit, so those who use more can spend more.

Read the developing story here:

Thomas Kingsley24 November 2022 07:52

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ICYMI: Chancellor Jeremy Hunt insists he does not back rejoining EU’s single market

Chancellor Jeremy Hunt has insisted he does not support Britain rejoining the European Union’s single market after facing a backlash from Tory Brexiteers.

He issued a carefully worded denial that he was the source of suggestions that the Government was considering a Swiss-style relationship with the EU.

Conservative Eurosceptics were up in arms after the Sunday Times reported that senior Government figures were working towards regaining access to the single market.

Read the full story here:

Maroosha Muzaffar24 November 2022 07:30

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Sunak appoints leading KC to investigate bullying claims against Raab

Commercial and employment law specialist Adam Tolley KC will look into the claims made against Mr Raab after two formal complaints were submitted about his conduct.

Downing Street has indicated Mr Tolley’s remit could extend to other allegations about Mr Raab after a series of claims related to his time as foreign secretary and his first stint in the Ministry of Justice.

Read the full story here:

Maroosha Muzaffar24 November 2022 07:10

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Sunak warned Tories face existential threat over housebuilding failures

Rishi Sunak was warned by a senior Tory that failing to build new homes is an existential threat for the Conservatives after rebels forced him to delay planning reforms.

Former Cabinet minister Simon Clarke said the party’s vote could collapse if the Government does not help people onto the housing ladder with a building spree.

Chancellor Jeremy Hunt acknowledged the difficulties faced by people trying to buy their first home and said planning rules often set “local communities against the national need to build more houses”.

Read the full story here:

Maroosha Muzaffar24 November 2022 06:50

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