Householders should receive at least the same amount of electricity credits this winter as provided in last year’s Budget, a Fine Gael Senator has said.
Senator Maria Byrne, the party’s finance spokesperson said that at least three €200 electrciity credits, spaced out across the winter should be given to householders, so they can have some level of certainty around their utilities budget.
“Reports in recent days suggest that provision will be made in Budget 2024 for at least one energy credit and this is causing some anxiety among householders who are already anticipating their winter heat and electricity bills,” Senator Byrne said.
“The three energy credits, totalling €600 per household were very effective. While they did come at a cost to the taxpayer, every taxpayer benefitted greatly from them,” she continued.
The previous electricity credits were automatically provided and paid in three instalments.
“The Government has said any energy credits for Budget 2024 would depend on whether energy prices have fallen or not. Wholesale prices remain higher than pre-pandemic levels and electricity prices in Ireland remain among the highest in Europe,” Senator Byrne said.
“The VAT rate has returned to 13% from 9% – this also puts an extra pressure on businesses and consumers to meet costs. Coupled with that, this week we’ve seen excise on fuel increase, resulting in greater charges for motorists at the pumps.
“People and families are still finding it hard to pay for the bills.
“While I am confident that 2024 will provide measures that will help put money back in people’s pockets – assurances that the energy credits will remain to the same order as last year need to be given,” Senator Byrne said.