A POLITICIAN is urging an energy provider to review the tariff it is charging vulnerable residents who are complaining about “eyewatering” bills.

Bob Doris, MSP for Glasgow Maryhill and Springburn, intervened to help residents of the Wyndford estate who recently held a protest outside the local SSE district heating facility.

Around 1800 homes in the area are powered by a local plant. Some of those living in the homes claim their bills have increased by up to 50%, despite the plant being introduced to tackle the fuel poverty issue in the area more than ten years ago.

Mr Doris said he was in a meeting with the energy provider last week, where he urged them to help alleviate the pressure on his constituents.

Glasgow Times: Bob Doris MSPBob Doris MSP

He told the Glasgow Times: “The meeting was constructive but it didn’t reach a solution to tackling the energy price increases that my constituents are going to encounter.

“I intend to meet SSE once more in short order to press them on the specific suggestions I made to address spiralling costs.

“I have urged for the tariff to be reconsidered and for pricing restraint to be shown, as well as calling for customers to be granted a payment holiday in the coming year from the community heating Capital Replacement Fund.”

The capital replacement charge is a payment collected from all the properties in the estate to carry out any maintenance and repairs on the community heating system.

“That would save some 200 home owners about £100 in the coming year,” added Mr Doris.

“For those who rent from Wheatley Homes Glasgow, that money is paid by the housing association.

“The payment holiday could free up much needed cash for them to help assist tenants that are struggling with their bills.”

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The MSP also encouraged residents who are struggling to meet the increasing costs of energy to seek advice.

He added: “I would urge them to contact Glasgow North West Citizens Advice or Wheatley Homes Glasgow as there is a dedicated energy debt advice and support service for the area.

“I’m trying my best to soften the blow of what is inevitably going to be significantly increase fuel bills.

“There is lots of good work taking place but this does not negate the fact that there is going to be a huge increase in fuel costs for people.

“Wyndford residents are anxious about what the tariff increases will mean for them in the months ahead, and I am trying to reassure them as best I can and plug them into the significant amount of welfare advice and support that exists.

“But I’m conscious that the biggest help they can get is their bills not going up as much.”

Glasgow Times: Members of the Wyndford Residents Union, along with MSP for the Glasgow region Pam Duncan-Glancy, assembled outside the SSE district heating plant in Maryhill.Members of the Wyndford Residents Union, along with MSP for the Glasgow region Pam Duncan-Glancy, assembled outside the SSE district heating plant in Maryhill.

A spokesperson from SSE Energy Solutions said: “As a heat networks provider our aim is always to provide affordable energy to our customers but unfortunately, the global rise is wholesale costs means we now have no choice but to increase our tariffs which we adjust on an annual basis.

“We are fully aware of the impact of rising prices, so we would encourage anyone who is struggling with their energy bills to contact us immediately to discuss the options we can provide to help.

“We also welcome the regulation in both England and Scotland that is coming into practice, to further ensure consistent and high standards across the industry for both customers and heat network providers.”