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I am a Councillor on Sheffield City Council for Arbourthorne ward in Sheffield, a member of the Cabinet and a Labour Party activist.

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Labour Council launches new scheme to help residents save money

Sheffield’s Labour Council is taking action on rising fuel bills and draughty homes

A new Council-backed scheme has been launched to help Sheffield residents facing increased heating costs, to keep warm and save money on energy bills.

Sheffield Heat and Save is an energy efficiency scheme being delivered by Keepmoat and SIG Energy Management, in partnership with Sheffield City Council.

Together, we are offering replacement boilers, cavity wall and loft insulation at little or no cost to home owners and private tenants across the city who are struggling to pay their energy bills.

The Department of Energy and Climate Change (DECC) estimates that around 27,000 Sheffield households are currently in fuel poverty.

It is hoped that the Sheffield Heat and Save scheme could see more than £4 million invested across the city, helping around 6500 residents to reduce the cost of keeping their homes warm.

This is just the start, and we know the potential is much, much higher. A study into the energy refurbishment market for the region identified the cost of improving all the homes in Sheffield at over £1.3 billion, with around £70 million of this eligible for ECO grants.

Councillor Jack Scott, Cabinet Member for Environment, Recycling and Streetscene, said: “It is no secret that times are tight for us all, largely due to the cuts we are all facing from this Government. These are without doubt having an impact on some of our residents.

“So a scheme like this which helps save money by providing improvements to keep homes warmer for little or no cost to the householder, ultimately helping residents reduce their bills really is something to be welcomed. In this day and age people should not have to choose between heating and eating, but sadly that is something we are seeing more and more of – so if we can lessen this burden with this new scheme I am all for it.

“This is a triple win – cheaper bills, creating jobs and reducing carbon emissions – we know that climate change is the greatest threat we face as a society. This scheme will be a big help.”

He added this comes just weeks after the Council has once again launched its Big Switch energy saving campaign which aims to help lower household bills by getting people to collectively switch to cheaper tariffs.

Steve Batty, Head of Sustainability at Keepmoat, said: “This is an exciting scheme for the city, enabling qualifying residents to save money on energy bills and make their homes warmer.

“The health, lifestyle and economic benefits of warmer homes, particularly for those most in need, are tremendous, so we would encourage anyone who thinks they may be eligible to take advantage of the works that are on offer.

“We are delighted to be working in partnership with Sheffield City Council and SIG on this scheme.”

Neil Donald, Managing Director of SIG Energy Management, said: “As energy prices continue to rise, improving the energy performance of our inefficient housing stock and tackling the fuel poverty crisis needs to be our number one priority.

“We are therefore incredibly pleased to be part of this scheme, which will provide households across Sheffield with the advice and financial support they need to make these much needed improvements,” added Neil. “The fact that the scheme is helping people on our own doorstep makes it even more important to us that this fantastic scheme is a success.”

Eligibility for the scheme is subject to survey and other qualifying criteria.

For more information or to register interest in the scheme, please call 0800 0190919 or 0114 3 990660, or visit www.sheffield.gov.uk/eco.

Sheffield City Council Launches Green Commission – Come and Join Us

Sheffield City Council is announcing today that it is establishing a Green Commission for the city. This follows from the success of the Fairness Commission, which looked at how Sheffield can be a fairer more equitable place to live and work.

Employing this approach, the Green Commission will explore how Sheffield can be more sustainable and establish the benefits that this will bring across the City.

The Green Commission will create a vision and blueprint for the future of Sheffield as a whole and not just for the city council.

This is a huge task and the Council cannot undertake it alone. We need the public, businesses and organisations across our city to help us shape a vision for a sustainable future for Sheffield.

Councillor Jack Scott, Cabinet Member for the Environment said: “We already know Sheffield is one of the greenest cities in Europe and has a proud green heritage. But we also know that we face big challenges, particularly from climate change, which could change every aspect of our lives.

“We need to craft a clear vision for our city so we can take clear, long-term action to make sure that we are protecting our environment and building a strong economy.” 

“I’m really pleased to be launching this Commission that will take a long-term look at Sheffield’s environment and build a blueprint for action. I hope as many people as possible will get involved and come to the event we are holding to launch Sheffield’s Green Commission.”

 

The first public meeting of the Green Commission will be held on April 8th at 7pm in the Town Hall. This first meeting will be a chance to help guide the process and decide the key topics for the Green Commission to concentrate on.

Due to space constraints, numbers are limited to around 100 people so it is vital that you notify us in advance of your attendance and any special requirements you may have.

If you wish to attend please email us on greencommission@sheffield.gov.uk

 

Come and Talk Trees

The Streets Ahead team are inviting all Sheffield residents, businesses and community groups to come along and learn more about the tree process they follow when maintaining, removing and replacing the city’s highway trees.

Two identical meetings will be held on:

  • Monday 31 March, 6pm – 7.15pm at the Town Hall
  • Thursday 3 April, 1.45pm – 3pm at the Town Hall

At these meetings the public can learn more about how the team:

  • Look after the city’s highway tree stock
  • How tree surveys are conducted to assess the condition of the trees
  • How the tree experts identify which trees will need to be replaced and which would benefit from a better maintenance regime

Cllr Jack Scott, Cabinet Member for Environment, Recycling and Streetscene, said: “The Time to Talk Trees meetings are a great opportunity for the residents of Sheffield to find out more about our processes and ask questions about how we manage the city’s highway trees.

“I know that any discussion about trees can evoke great passion in people and I welcome that passion. Sheffield is a green city and we want to do everything we can to support our reputation.

These meetings are an opportunity for those who are interested to find out more about Sheffield’s trees, how we maintain them and how we protect the public.”

To register your interest in one of the Time to Talk Trees events email kate.hughes@sheffield.gov.uk or call 0114 273 5981. Please let us know

  • Preferred meeting date
  • Number of attendees
  • Contact details

For more information on Streets Ahead works visit www.sheffield.gov.uk/streetsahead

Did you know? Sheffield’s Solar Energy Revolution

 

Amongst the 10 largest cities in the UK, Sheffield has gained an outstanding lead in renewable energy capacity since the launch of the FIT scheme – achieving over eight times as much installed capacity/1,000 population as London and fifteen times as much as Manchester.

With Leeds and Bristol in second and third place respectively, this flies in the face of geographical expectations that northern cities would not maximise solar PV as much as their southern counterparts.

 

Sheffield Council Cracks Down: Tobacco Fines Not To Be Sniffed At

Two illegal tobacco traders have been ordered to pay substantial fines following prosecution by Sheffield City Council Trading Standards.

278 packs of contraband cigarettes and 23 packs of hand rolling tobacco were seized from two shops during an operation in which seven retail premises were visited by Sheffield City Council Trading Standards, South Yorkshire Police and two sniffer dogs.

Mr Hessen Por of Veeno’s Supermarket, London Road, pleaded guilty to five specimen offences under the Trade Marks Act and was fined £150 and ordered to pay £725 towards costs.

Mr Hassan Mohammed of Abbey Stop Shop, Abbeydale Road pleaded guilty to three specimen offences under the Trade Marks Act and was fined £300 and ordered to pay £623 towards costs.

Councillor Jack Scott said: “We often act on intelligence received from the public and the success of this operation shows that even the smallest piece of intelligence can make all the difference. Although the traders go to extraordinary lengths to hide their contraband, we are determined to find it. These highly trained tobacco dogs mean that no hiding place is safe.”

The haul included counterfeit and non-duty paid tobacco products which cannot be legally sold in the UK.

The dogs helped to find tobacco which these traders had hidden in unusual concealments. One shop had built a hidden compartment with hydraulic infra-red operating mechanism to open and close a false wall panel, the other had them hidden in the top compartment of an electric oven under the hot plates/

The court ordered forfeiture of the products for destruction.

The low price and easy availability of illegal tobacco encourages people to keep smoking, and children and young people are often targeted by unscrupulous traders.

Anyone with information about the sale of illegal tobacco should call the Citizens Advice consumer helpline on 08454 04 05 06 or the confidential Crimestoppers hotline 0800 555111.

Press Statement: Response to Flooding

 

With Richard Wright, Chief Executive of Sheffield Chamber of Commerce and Cllr Leigh Bramall, Cabinet Member for the Economy, Skills and Development

Councillor Jack Scott, Cabinet Member for Environment, Recycling and Streetscene said:

“It is awful to see what is happening in Somerset and down south with the flooding and our hearts go out to those who are suffering and I really hope it manages to get sorted soon.

“In Sheffield we have worked really closely with the Environment Agency ever since the flooding here in 2007 . We have taken clearly effective measures to make sure our city is protected from flooding as best we can.

Extreme weather events will become more likely as the impact of climate change is increasingly felt. These floods serve as a reminder of the need to take real action – and soon. ”

Sheffield sought to strengthen its plans for defences in the Lower Don Valley by bidding for a £10 million increase in funding from the Environment Agency.

The money will complement the £1.4m investment businesses agreed to contribute to the scheme following a Business Improvement District (BID) ballot last year. This private sector contribution remains vital as it finances the ongoing channel maintenance element of the project, which is not eligible for government funding.

The Lower Don Valley flood defence project aims to improve flood defences in the Lower Don Valley by implementing more than 40 interventions across an 8km stretch of the River Don, which was severely flooded in 2000 and 2007.

Sheffield’s Lower Don Valley area was severely flooded in 2000 and 2007 causing massive disruption and multi-million pound damages to hundreds of businesses, power, transport and the telecommunications infrastructure.

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