Report from the MP
Sorry I am unable to join you at your meeting tonight. I just wanted to update you on a number of issues since your last meeting.
- Storm Eunice
Some residents across the constituency were left without power for a number of days following Storm Eunice on Friday the 18th of February. I was in close contact with UK Power Network throughout this period helping vulnerable constituents and pushing for updates and support. Payments are expected for anyone who was cut off for an extended period of time so do contact me if you have any trouble accessing this. UK Power Network should contact you directly if you are eligible however you can also fill out a claim form online at: https://forms.ukpowernetworks.co.uk/power-cut-payment-form
- A27 Long Term Plan
I understand that National Highways are starting consultations on the A27 long-term plan. I will make sure that if I receive any update on this, I will include it in my parish report for the next meeting.
- Dentist Appointments
I understand constituents’ concerns surrounding current access to Dentist Appointments. The government has recently written to all dentists to ask them what space they have available and for appointments to become available for others to rebook if they receive a cancellation. If anyone is struggling to get a space at a dentist’s surgery, I recommend calling 111 as they will be able to advise you of a local dentist with space. If you do this and they advise you that no local dentists have space, please come back to me and I will raise this with the local Clinical Commissioning Group. The Government has recently invested £50million for 350,000 dentist appointments to help access to appointments.
- Extra Support for East Sussex Schools
Schools in East Sussex will receive extra support as one of 55 new Education Investment Areas under plans to Level Up education for disadvantaged children and young people across England as part of the Conservative Government’s Levelling Up White Paper. This will include funding to help schools retain the best teachers and priority for new specialist sixth form free schools to give talented children from disadvantaged backgrounds the highest standard of education. The Government is targeting investment and support as we build back fairer – helping to level up education standards, ensuring children and young people across the country to fulfil their potential.
- £1.1m funding boost for local authorities for Domestic Abuse Victims
The breakdown will see East Sussex County Council receive £1,072,232, Lewes District Council £32,867 and Wealden District £32,381, giving a total of £1,137,480. Domestic abuse is a horrific crime, and we must do everything we can to help victims recover and rebuild their lives. I am pleased the Government is giving additional funding to both District Councils and the County Council in my Lewes constituency to help local victims of abuse and their children start again – with better services such as healthcare, social workers and benefits.
- Support for Household energy costs in Lewes Constituency
I welcome plans from the Government which will mean 34,145 households across Lewes District are set to be supported with a £150 non-repayable cash rebate for homes in Council Tax bands A-D helping both lower and middle-income families. This is as well as A £200 ‘smoothing’ rebate on energy bills for all households, to be paid back over the next five years at £40 per year – starting from April 2023. Global pressures have led to many households across the Lewes constituency feeling a squeeze on their household costs, so it is right that the Government has come forward with this support.
- Licence fee Freeze
I am backing plans to freeze the BBC License fee at £159 until 2024 and then rise in line with inflation for the following four years. Freezing the BBC license fee at this time when constituents are under financial pressure is the right thing to do. This financial settlement for the BBC strikes the right balance between protecting households and allowing broadcasters to deliver their vital public responsibilities.