MILLIONS of people could get council tax rebates worth hundreds of pounds to help with soaring energy bills.
The Prime Minister is set to meet with Rishi Sunak next week to discuss ways to deal with the cost-of-living crisis, it’s been reported.
The energy cap is expected to double in April thanks to soaring global demand for gas and electricity post-pandemic, pushing up costs for everyone.
This means that 22 million households will face higher bills.
Boris Johnson has been locked in talks with the Chancellor, Business Secretary and energy firms over the best way to take the edge off and avoid Brits being stung with hundreds of pounds of extra bills.
One plan being considered people in less expensive homes in council tax bands A to C would receive significant discounts on their bills.
This means that the lowest bands would receive the most, according to The Times.
A government source said that Rishi was looking to announce a “package of measures” that would provide some help for all households.
But the Chancellor has insisted any help must target the poorest Brits and not be a bung for the rich.
The Treasury is also understood to be looking at whether a one-off cash payment to a certain number of Brits on low incomes might be a better alternative.
The system would be similar to when former US President Donald Trump made direct payments of hundreds of dollars to every person in the US during the Covid crisis.
But it’s understood that it would be complex to do the same here, as there isn’t a simple system in place to make such payments.
And sources say that this has now been rejected.
A Treasury source told The Sun: “Ministers are looking at ways we can help to support households in the short term – particularly for those who need it most.
“There is no easy or perfect way to do this.
“A variety of options are being looked at and as always we will keep the policies we have in place under review.”
It was reported last week that the Government could step in to cover the costs too – with energy bills being paid for.
Dr Aveek Bhattacharya, the chief economist of the Social Market Foundation, backed the Chancellor to “write millions of cheques” of up to £500 each.
Those on lower incomes not paying higher rates of tax should get £300, and those on Universal Credit or benefits should get another £200, he suggested.
But they should be staggered over a few months to avoid causing a bigger inflation spike.
And a one-off payment would avoid tying the Chancellor down to ongoing extra costs year on year, he argued.