I WRITE in response to Yvonne Williams’s letter (CP online, 04-12-22).

Representing the Isle of Wight will always be an honour. I will never be complacent about fighting the Island’s corner in parliament.

When I became the Isle of Wight’s MP my promise to Islanders was to ensure the Island gets a better deal from government. We’re delivering on that.

I will address Ms Williams points on rising bills. Times are tough for many Islanders.  I know households are paying more for food and energy.

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The government is taking action to help families across the Isle of Wight and across Britain.

Most recently, Rishi Sunak has reinstated the triple lock from April 2023, increasing the state pension by 10.1 per cent, in line with inflation.

Many Islanders will benefit from this. Here are just some of the measures we have brought in to help families:

1. The Energy Bill Discount, which removes £400 from household energy bills.

2. A £150 cash rebate for homes in council tax bands A-D.

3. A £650 one-off cost of living payment for those on means-tested benefits.

4. A £300 one-off pensioner cost of living payment for pensioners in receipt of the winter fuel allowance. Individuals on disability benefits received an additional, one-off £150 payment in September.

5. The Energy Price Guarantee, which applies from October 1 until April 2023 and discounts the unit cost for gas and electricity.

6. The Energy Bill Relief Scheme, which discounts wholesale gas and electricity prices for UK businesses, the voluntary sector and the public sector.

In terms of funding, the Isle of Wight has received in excess of an additional £120 million over the past five years. This will create better opportunities and better life chances for Islanders. They include:

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Working with the previous council, we secured the Venture Quays site at good value to the taxpayer, protecting hundreds of jobs.

I also made sure more of the Isle of Wight was included in the Solent Freeport.

The government, at my suggestion, has instigated a national forum for UK islands so that islands can work collectively to lobby government.

More recently, I secured a commitment from Southern Water for the Isle of Wight to become one of its priority national ‘pathfinder’ schemes, investing millions into significantly improving Island drainage and sewage systems.

I don’t take all the credit for these achievements, there are often others involved, but it is my job to fight the Island’s corner.

This is something I do every single day.

There is always more to do, but in the past five years I believe that we have got government to deliver more support for the Island than at any time in our history.

I am proud of that record. I will continue to work as hard as I can for Islanders for as long as I have the honour of being the Isle of Wight’s Member of Parliament.

  • Read more letters sent to the County Press here. Do you have a view on this or any other subject? Send us a letter – under 350 words if possible - to editor@iwcp.co.uk