Free TV for over-75s to be re­viewed

Rochdale Observer - - YOUR VIEWS -

FREE TV li­cence fees for over-75s are to be re­viewed, the BBC has con­firmed.

The cor­po­ra­tion took over the cost from the Gov­ern­ment of pro­vid­ing free TV li­cences for over-75s as part of its charter re­newal ne­go­ti­a­tions.

The move is be­ing phased in from 2018-19 with sole re­spon­si­bil­ity from 2020, when it is es­ti­mated to cost the broad­caster around £725 mil­lion.

BBC di­rec­tor gen­eral Lord Hall told the Dig­i­tal, Cul­ture, Me­dia and Sport Com­mit­tee: “The con­ces­sion, as it’s cur­rently for­mu­lated, comes to an end in June 2020. That was part of the last li­cence fee set­tle­ment...

“We, the board, have got to de­cide what to re­place it with,” he said.

“We have got to be mind­ful ... We know that those over 65 or over 75 con­sume many, many more BBC ser­vices than oth­ers.There is real hard­ship among some or many of those over 75.”

Pressed on whether the free li­cence fee for over-75s would be re­placed, he told MPs: “It could be the same.

“The board could say, we will just con­tinue with it as it is or it could be re­formed.”

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