Key Issues for the 2015 Parliament
Published Tuesday, May 19, 2015 | Commons Briefing papers CBP-7189
This book examines the key issues facing the House of Commons over the course of the 2015 Parliament - from the public finances to the UK’s membership of the EU and from school places for children to climate change.
Topics: Administration of justice, Agriculture, Armed forces, Asia, Benefits policy, Central government, Child care, Children and families, Climate change, Competition, Consumers, Crime, Defence policy, Divorce, Economic policy, Economic situation, Elections, Employment, Energy, EU political integration, Europe, Financial services, Funerals, Further education, Gambling, Health finance, Health services, Higher education, Housing, Human rights, Immigration, Incomes and poverty, Industry, Information technology, Intelligence services, International trade, Marriage, Media, Middle East, Parliament, Pay, Pensions, Political parties, Population, Pre-school education, Prisons, Public expenditure, Railways, Schools, Science, Security industry, Taxation
Measuring Living Standards
Published Monday, March 30, 2015 | POSTnotes POST-PN-491
This POSTnote outlines different approaches to setting and measuring thresholds and their strengths and limitations. It also summarises research on recent trends in living standards and the key factors that influence them.
Topics: Benefits policy, Child care, Children and families, Economic policy, Economic situation, Employment, Equality, Family benefits, Fuel poverty, Housing supply, Incomes and poverty, Pay, Pensions, Private rented housing, Social rented housing, Statistics policy, Unemployment, Working age benefits
Child Poverty Act 2010: a short guide
Published Friday, July 4, 2014 | Commons Briefing papers SN05585
The Child Poverty Act 2010, which received Royal Assent on 25 March 2010, fulfilled the Labour Government's commitment made in September 2008 to enshrine in legislation the target of 'eradicating' child poverty by 2020
Food Banks and Food Poverty
Published Thursday, April 10, 2014 | Commons Briefing papers SN06657
The number of food banks in the UK has increased substantially in recent years. This note explains how food banks work, examines their growth and discusses possible contributing factors and policy developments.
The Green Deal
Published Thursday, February 6, 2014 | Commons Briefing papers SN05763
This paper describes the Government's Green Deal energy efficiency policy. The Government has since decided to stop funding the Green Deal Finance Company (GDFC) which was set up to lend money to Green Deal providers.
Components of an energy bill
Published Monday, January 27, 2014 | Commons Briefing papers SN06751
The latest round of energy price rises has brought increasing focus on the different elements that make up a domestic energy bill and particularly which are responsible for these price rises. This note describes the different component parts of a domestic energy bill and summarises existing estimates of the contribution of each part to current bills and contributions to past bill increases.
Cold Weather Payments for winter 2013/2014
Published Monday, November 11, 2013 | Commons Briefing papers SN06748
Cold Weather Payments are made from the Social Fund to certain recipients of Income Support, income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance, income-related Employment and Support Allowance, Universal Credit or Pension Credit during periods of very cold weather.
Warm Front Scheme
Published Thursday, August 22, 2013 | Commons Briefing papers SN06231
The Warm Front scheme in England was a programme designed to help vulnerable households, including those in fuel poverty, to benefit from energy efficiency improvements such as home heating and loft insulation measures. It has now been replaced by the Green Deal.
Community Energy Savings Programme (CESP)
Published Friday, August 16, 2013 | Commons Briefing papers SN06197
The Community Energy Saving Programme (CESP) is a three-year obligation on major energy suppliers and generators to offer free or low cost energy efficiency measures to communities in certain low income areas. It ran from 1 September 2009 to December 2012.
Simplifying Energy Tariffs
Published Thursday, August 15, 2013 | Commons Briefing papers SN06440
The energy regulator Ofgem has finalised its proposals for simplifying energy tariffs, while retaining competition in the GB energy supply market. The Government is also taking 'backstop' powers in the current Energy Bill on tariffs.
Carbon Emissions Reduction Target (CERT)
Published Wednesday, August 14, 2013 | Commons Briefing papers SN06196
The Carbon Emission Reduction Target (CERT) placed a five year obligation on gas and electricity suppliers to reduce carbon emissions in the household sector through energy efficiency improvements. It ran from April 2008 - December 2012.
Heating oil and other off-gas grid heating
Published Friday, April 12, 2013 | Commons Briefing papers SN05806
This note sets out the regulation of the off-gas grid energy market, and possible sources of support for those who live off the gas grid and have to rely on other fuels such as heating oil or LPG to heat their homes.
Energy Bill: Committee Stage Report
Published Tuesday, March 12, 2013 | Commons Briefing papers RP13-19
This paper complements Library Research Paper 12/79 on the Energy Bill 2012-13. It covers the Bill’s Second Reading and Committee Stages. The Bill seeks to implement electricity market reform and introduces ‘contracts for difference’ to support all forms of low carbon generation, including nuclear. Government amendments made during Committee Stage related to cheaper energy tariffs and setting a decarbonisation target.
Welfare Benefits Up-rating Bill (HL Bill 78 of 2012-13)
Published Wednesday, February 6, 2013 | Lords Library notes LLN-2013-004
The Welfare Benefits Up-rating Bill implements an announcement by the Chancellor in the 2012 Autumn Statement that increases in certain working-age welfare benefits and tax credits would be limited to 1 percent, rather than increasing them in line with inflation. This Library Note is intended to provide background information in advance of the Bill’s second reading in the House of Lords on 11 February 2013.
Welfare Benefits Uprating Bill
Published Friday, January 4, 2013 | Commons Briefing papers RP13-1
Social security legislation requires the Secretary of State to review benefit levels each year to determine whether they have retained their value relative to prices. For most benefits annual uprating is not mandatory, but historically governments have exercised their discretion by increasing the principal means-tested working-age benefits each April in line with prices. In his 2012 Autumn Statement, the Chancellor announced that increases in most working-age benefits would be limited to 1% a year for three years from 2013-14, as part of a package to deliver additional welfare savings of £3.7 billion a year by 2015-16. The Bill amends primary legislation to enable the decisions on uprating in 2014-15 and 2015-16 to be implemented.
Published Thursday, December 13, 2012 | Commons Briefing papers RP12-79
The Energy Bill [Bill 100 of 2012-13] seeks to implement ‘electricity market reform’ and through this achieve ‘secure, clean and affordable’ electricity supplies. The Bill was introduced to the Commons on 29 November 2012 and will have its Second Reading debate on 19 December 2012. A draft Bill was subject to pre-legislative scrutiny by the Energy and Climate Change Select Committee.
Cold Weather Payments for winter 2012/2013
Published Thursday, October 25, 2012 | Commons Briefing papers SN06074
Cold Weather Payments of 25 pounds a week are made to certain recipients of Income Support, income-based Jobseeker’s Allowance, income-related Employment and Support Allowance or Pension Credit during periods of very cold weather. To ‘trigger’ the payments, the average temperature at a specified weather station must be recorded as, or forecast to be, zero degrees or below for seven consecutive days.
Food Prices and Affordability
Published Thursday, October 11, 2012 | Commons Briefing papers SN06436
Food prices have hit historic peaks in the last few years. This note sets out recent trends internationally, UK policy responses and the follow through to UK prices and spending habits.