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Ministers seek Committee support for Fuel Poverty Payment

5 January, 2009 - by Gerry Kelly

Junior Ministers Gerry Kelly and Jeffrey Donaldson today met with the OFMDFM committee to discuss the accelerated passage of legislation which will enable the Executive to make winter fuel payments.

The Financial Assistance Bill is due to come before the Assembly next week and ministers were today briefing the committee and seeking their support for the proposals which will provide a £150 payment to those most in need.

The Bill is designed to provide a mechanism whereby the Executive can respond rapidly to any emerging crisis or hardship, ensuring that any disadvantage is dealt with effectively.

Junior Minister Gerry Kelly MLA said:

"We met with the committee today to seek their support to expedite the legislation to deal with the crisis that faces those most in need in our community. It is vital that the Executive acts collectively, effectively and decisively to redress the impact of the global economic downturn. We are keen that the committee aids our efforts get support to families and pensioners living in poverty as quickly as possible." CRÍOCH

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