Bournemouth has been criticised for charging a sharp electrical appliance for £15,000 instead of £40,000.
The appliance manufacturer, Sharp, said the switch was a cost-saving measure and would save the consumer money.
Its Chief Executive, Paul Stinson, said it was a “temporary measure” and that the company would re-evaluate the pricing model in the future.
However, Bournhamshire County Council said it had not received a cost benefit assessment and had asked Sharp to “refocus” on other areas.
He said the firm would “consider all the information and issues that have arisen” before making any further comment.
Mr Stinson said the decision was “unusual and unfortunate” and would have a “negative impact on businesses”.
He said Sharp had “been a good partner to Bournshire” and had “taken the time to consider all the facts and data and come to a decision that makes a lot of sense”.’
No excuse’Brightfield has been offering electricity to residents in the town of Brightfield for several years, but its current tariff scheme means residents are paying for the service.
Brightfield is the only town in the UK to offer electricity for free.
However it was announced in January that the town would be charging customers to use its “Smart Energy” service for a maximum of three years.
A spokesperson for Brightfield said the council was “committed to providing a high-quality, low-cost energy service” to residents, adding that the scheme was “part of the town’s commitment to reduce its carbon emissions by 25 per cent over the next five years”.
A spokesperson said the charge for “Smart-Energy” would be the same for “every household” in the village and that any residents who choose to pay the price would be charged the same rate.
Brightfields Chief Executive Andrew Brown said the “Smart Power” tariff had been in place for some time, adding: “Brightfield remains committed to providing affordable electricity to our residents and we will continue to offer our customers the best deals on this service.”
Brightfield’s spokesperson added that residents would be “encouraged” to switch their smart meter to “Smart Electricity” for a minimum of two years, adding the tariff would be changed again “when appropriate”.
Brightfield said it would provide a “quick response” to anyone who had an issue with the tariff.
“We are currently offering the same tariff to all residential customers regardless of their home address,” the spokesperson added.
Brightford’s local authority said the scheme had been “successful in reducing the local carbon emissions” and “provides a level of affordable electricity for our residents”.
Brightfields local authority chief executive, Nick Purnell, said: “Our policy is to provide free electricity to all our residents irrespective of their address and the scheme is working well for the local area.”
However, we have been forced to make the change in light of the impact on the local economy and the number of businesses affected by the change.
“He added: “As a result of the Smart Electricity tariff we have had a positive impact on local economic activity, and we believe that it is working to reduce our carbon emissions and improve our quality of life.
“Brightfields council said that it was “extremely disappointed” by the news.”
This is an extremely complex issue that has been ongoing since the beginning and we are working hard to ensure the scheme remains sustainable,” Mr Purnll said.
Bright’s spokesperson said: “”The local authority is committed to helping residents in Brightfield through the Smart Energy scheme and is working hard towards achieving this aim.”‘
A major step forward’Brightfields Mayor, Mark Wilson, said that the decision to charge customers to charge the same price for “smart electricity” was “an important step forward”.
“This was a decision taken by the council, not by Sharp,” he said.
“The council is committed and determined to delivering the best services to our community and this decision means we are delivering the highest possible standard of service for our customers.”
I would like to thank Sharp for their commitment and we look forward to continuing to work closely with them.
“Bright is one of the largest suppliers of electricity in the country and was ranked the UK’s most energy efficient in 2018.
The council said the new scheme would be rolled out across all of Brightfields network and would continue to be rolled-out until 2020.
It said: ‘Smart Electricity’ is a high quality and low cost energy tariff that provides a high standard of services to customers.
‘Smart Power’ is the tariff that applies to all local area households regardless of whether they are in Brightfields borough or in a town in Wales.