free spins on sign up-Ovo Energy boss proposes plan to stave off household bill crisis

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Ovo's Stephen Fitzpatrick says help with bills is needed now or the poorest households will be cold and hungry

The boss of the UK's third largest energy supplier has proposed a plan for the government to subsidise soaring gas and electricity bills.

Ovo Energy founder Stephen Fitzpatrick said under the scheme the poorest households would get the most support.

Higher earners would see the amount of help taper off as they used more energy.

The government said it was preparing to deliver any extra support as soon as a new prime minister is in place.

Mr Fitzpatrick said action was needed now before the winter, otherwise the poorest households would be cold and hungry.

A typical household gas and electricity bill will rise by 80% to £3,549 a year from October, the regulator Ofgem announced on Friday.

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Mr Fitzpatrick, the founder and chief executive of Ovo, which has 4.5 million customers, has published a 10-point plan to address the crisis.

A key proposal in the plan is to allow energy firms to borrow from a government-backed fund, and then use the money to subsidise bills.

A similar proposal by Scottish Power to freeze energy bills for all at their current level was dismissed by the Treasury for giving the same relief to richer and poorer households.

Under Mr Fitzpatrick's plan, everyone would get some assistance, but higher earners would see the amount of money received reduce, the more energy they used.

This is a similar way to how the tax system works, with a tax-free allowance and increased levels of taxation for those on higher incomes.

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