Cost of living crisis update: Council 'closes the gap' for residents on low incomes

agreed a new funding scheme that will help residents who are on a low income but will miss out on the government’s £650 cost-of-living payment.

The way the government calculates who receives £650 means that people whose income is just £1 above certain levels will not qualify. 

Councillor Zoe Nicholson, Deputy Leader of the Council and Cabinet Member for Finance, said: “Where the difference in circumstances is minimal, we will close the gap to prevent even more people suffering over the coming months.

“Without our safety net some residents in the district will miss out on the government payment and face incredible hardship as a consequence and we mustn’t let that happen.”

The council will make a financial award to those residents who do not receive the government payment of £650 and who have less than £6,000 in savings; are in receipt of housing benefit and/or a council tax reduction, but not in receipt of any other means-tested benefit or have a weekly net income below the levels set out or are in receipt of a disability benefit.

The levels are: single person - £320; lone parent - £370; couple - £420; couple with children - £470.

This limited cash scheme will open on 1 October 2022.

Councillor Nicholson added: “Earlier this year we committed £750,000 to combat the cost-of-living crisis, with funds awarded immediately to foodbanks and money ring fenced for council tenants.

“The announcement today will give more help and hope to people in Lewes district who need it most.”

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