IPART: review of the price structures for metropolitan water utilities Alternative formats available on request to PIAC - Contact PIAC
PIAC understands that IPART, as the price regulator for water and sewerage services for the NSW metropolitan water utilities, has concerns about the equity of the current pricing structures of the metropolitan water service providers. In this review, IPART contends that existing price structures for NSW metropolitan water utilities are currently not cost reflective, which has contributed to inequitable cross subsidisation of services for some consumers by others. To remove this inequity, IPART is proposing some changes to the service charge prices, which may see a rise in service fees for some consumers. PIAC is concerned that these price rises are being considered at a time when many households are tightly managing rising water and electricity prices.
PIAC believes that in order to understand the full scope of the potential negative impacts that may result from these amendments, there should be a comprehensive cost-benefit analysis included in the decision-making process. PIAC also encourages a review of the consistency of customer protections available to NSW consumers. In seeking equity across the charging structures, PIAC believes it is equally important to seek consistency and equity of access to rebates, payment vouchers and payment arrangements that will help consumers remain connected to this essential service.