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Warm Front Scheme

Volume 506: debated on Monday 22 February 2010

To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change what mechanisms have been put in place to ensure that quotations from Warm Front contractors match those in the private sector. (315649)

In 2008 an independent audit carried out by the Warm Front scheme’s quality assessors, White Young Green, confirmed that the Warm Front pricing structures in place at that time provided good value for money when compared with the wider market. This was supported by the National Audit Office report into the scheme published in 2009.

Following a renegotiation of the scheme manager contract aimed at improving the quality of service for Warm Front customers a number of changes were made to the Warm Front contract in July 2009.

As part of this, under the new arrangements up to 35 per cent. of work will be allocated to appointed installers at a new, competitively derived, set price. For the remaining 65 per cent. of work, Warm Front registered installers operating will be able to bid via an electronic auction to establish the lowest price. This will include all cases where a customer contribution would be required under the fixed prices. Where a customer contribution is required, individual households will be free to choose between the three lowest bidders and to help them decide will have access to the installer’s performance rating.

This new system is in the process of being rolled out across England, with full coverage expected to be in place by 1 May 2010.

The effectiveness of all Warm Front pricing and cost processes continue to be subject to regular review by the Department and the independent audits by White Young Green.

To ask the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change what estimate he has made of the number of back boilers which have been replaced under the Warm Front scheme in (a) Mid Bedfordshire constituency, (b) Bedfordshire, (c) the East of England and (d) England in each year since its inception. (317531)

The following table shows the total number of boilers replaced by the Warm Front Scheme in (a) Mid Bedfordshire constituency, (b) Bedfordshire, (c) the East of England and (d) England in each year since the current phase of the scheme began in 2005, but does not differentiate between back boilers and other type of boiler replaced under Warm Front. Details on types of boiler being replaced are not recorded.

Boilers installed

2005-06

2006-07

2007-08

2008-09

2009-101

Mid Bedfordshire

3

18

68

99

78

Bedfordshire

70

349

1,059

1,245

851

East of England

711

2,946

6,330

7,976

7,309

England

14,136

53,436

75,600

80,548

74,932

1 Up to 10 February 2010