IPART is reviewing prices for water and wastewater services provided by Essential Water in Broken Hill and the surrounding areas of Menindee, Sunset Strip and Silverton.
Prices are being reviewd for water transportation services provided by Water NSW’s Murray River to Broken Hill Pipeline. The Pipeline supplies water to people in the Broken Hill region and is a key factor in determining prices for Essential Water customers.
Tribunal member Deborah Cope said IPART will assess whether the price changes proposed by the two utilities represent good value for money for customers and are affordable.
“Essential Water has proposed to limit increases to water and wastewater prices of around 2% a year over the next 5 years, on top of inflation. To fund this, Essential Water also proposes the NSW Government expand its existing subsidy to keep prices affordable,” Ms Cope said.
Ms Cope said Essential Water’s proposed price increases are driven by higher costs to address ageing infrastructure in Broken Hill. The declining population in the area also puts upward pressure on prices since there will be fewer customers to share these costs.
IPART released Issues Papers for the two reviews which outline key issues that will be considered and questions we are seeking feedback on from the community.
Ms Cope encouraged customers and other stakeholders to make submissions to these reviews.
IPART will consider all comments made through its website and in submissions. Submissions are due until 22 October 2021. IPART’s Issues Papers along with Essential Water’s and Water NSW’s pricing proposals are available on IPART’s website.
IPART will set new prices for these services to apply from 1 July 2022.