Issue details

Award of funding from the Household Support Fund to support low income pensioners identified by the Department for Work and Pensions

Herefordshire Council has received an allocation of £1,329,601.78 from the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) under the Household Support Fund. The expectation is that the funding should be used primarily to support households in most need, with a requirement that the majority of the funding should support families with children and pensioners who would otherwise struggle with energy, food and water bills as well as other essential costs. Specifically, at least one third of the allocation should be ring-fenced to support low income pensioner households.
To help identify these households, DWP has provided information on pensioner households in receipt of pension credit. With this information the Council has set an eligibility requirement that to receive a payment under this element of the Household Support Fund, residents will be of state pension age, in receipt of Pension Credit Guarantee and living in Herefordshire, but not in a residential or nursing care home. Latest data indicates that there are about 3,200 single or couple households who meet this eligibility criteria. They will receive a one-off payment of £170.
Low-income households spend a larger proportion than average on energy and food so will be more affected by price increases. Consumer prices, as measured by the Consumer Prices Index (CPI) rose by 9.4% in the 12 months to June 2022, up from 9.1% in May. The Bank of England expects inflation to rise further to around 11% in 2022 before levels start to fall during 2023. There have been significant increases in the price of energy and food and this is likely to increase with a further rise in the price cap on energy in October 2022.
By utilising the funding from government, this will have a positive impact on low income households by minimising the debt burden on those that struggle to pay essential bills.

Decision type: Non-key

Decision status: Recommendations Approved

Notice of proposed decision first published: 11/08/2022

Decision due: 5 August 2022 by Director of Resources and Assurance

Contact: Andrew Lovegrove, Director of Resources and Assurance Email: