Local businesses are finding times tough with bills going up and people working harder to make ends meet. That amounts to a cost of living crisis for people in the Rother Valley and a threat to our local economy.
Businesses repeatedly raise concerns about growing bills, telling me that energy bills are the second largest cost that they face.
Local businesses are crucial to Rotherham and I won’t see them left out in the cold by this Government.
Since David Cameron has been in Downing Street prices have risen faster than wages in 38 out of 39 months and energy bills have gone up by almost £300.
When the price of energy increases energy companies pass this on but when it drops consumers don’t see their bills fall.
While small businesses struggle to get credit, bankers’ bonuses are up 82 per cent.
We can only tackle the cost of living crisis by building an economy that works for working people.
That is why I am calling on the Prime Minister to take action and freeze our bills now.
The National Energy Action Community Action Awards aim to reward projects throughout England which demonstrate excellence in the field of tackling fuel poverty and improving energy efficiency.
Held jointly with the Department of Energy & Climate Change and British Gas, entries are accepted from community groups, charities, local authorities and third sector organisations.
Winners will receive up to £3,500 to develop or enhance a project which demonstrates excellence in one of the following areas: community action to tackle fuel poverty across all vulnerable groups, community action to tackle hard to reach groups (in fuel poverty) and community action to tackle fuel poverty in rural areas.
Winners will also receive additional financial and practical support to run a community engagement event to showcase their project and share best practice with others. It will run in two phases, with phase 1 closing on the 31st October 2013.
For more information and details of timelines, rules and how to enter please visit www.nea.org.uk
High Streets across the country are likely to suffer a further blow as a newly privatised Royal Mail seeks to maximise the resale value of hundreds of local sorting and delivery offices and move them to cheaper industrial parks outside of town.
Royal Mail operates from around 2,000 sites including 48 mail centres, with a prospectus value of around £1 billion.
Approximately half are owned by Royal Mail Estates and in many cases are in areas of prime central real estate. A disposal plan could see these become vacated and sold on with Royal Mail consolidating its collection and distribution facilities in out of town industrial parks.
This is bad news for customers who will suddenly find they have to travel long distances to collect parcels and other recorded items. I have written to Royal Mail to ask them what guarantees there are over the continued use of their local offices.
Next week Localgiving.com will be launching their new Grow Your Tenner campaign.
Localgiving.com, the UK’s primary fundraising website for small local charities and community groups, will run a match funding initiative turning £500,000 from the Cabinet Office into over £1.2 million for grass roots charities across England.
These are often small charities that make a big difference within local communities.Through Grow Your Tenner, eligible charities will see donations up to £10 doubled and monthly donations doubled up to £10 a month for six months, adding an extra £60 for the charity.
For more information please visit www.localgiving.com/gyt