Newry’s lone pensioners to benefit from £17.5million in rates assistance
Newry’s lone pensioners are set to benefit from a new scheme launched this week by Finance Minister Sammy Wilson. Wilson welcomed the uptake of over £17.5million to lone pensioners in rates assistance and the Lone Pensioner Allowance scheme entitles people aged 70 and over who live alone to a 20% discount in their rate bill. Over 27,000 pensioners across Northern Ireland have benefited from this scheme since April 2008.
Wilson stated, “I am encouraged that the number of older people receiving this allowance is increasing year on year. The current economic climate is putting real financial pressure on everyone and in particular, many of our more vulnerable citizens. Over 27,000 pensioners have so far qualified for the 20% discount. I am sure this has been of great assistance in these challenging financial times.”
The Minister, who was visiting the Young at Heart Exhibition in Belfast for retired people in Northern Ireland, was keen to highlight that there is also help available for older people who do not live alone. “There are a number of other reliefs and entitlements that are available to those on a low income and to pensioners including Housing Benefit and Rate Relief. I am taking this opportunity to encourage pensioners to check out what is on offer and apply if they think they might qualify.”
Full details of these reliefs and entitlements are included in the booklet ratepayers will have received with their bill. These can also be accessed via the nidirect website: http://www.nidirect.gov.uk/rates
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