PRICING ANNOUNCEMENTS FOR URBAN AND RURAL CUSTOMERS
START OF WATER PLAN 5
Lower Murray Water (LMW) Interim Managing Director, Paul O’Donohue, has advised that the Essential Services Commission (ESC) has released its final determination on water pricing for the five-year period 2023 – 2028.
“The ESC has advised their approval of increases in LMW’s tariffs essentially associated with inflation levels (CPI) for rural and urban water customers in 2023/24.” He said.
“For our urban owner occupier customers there will be an increase, with tariffs rising on average 7.7% in the coming year. This is essentially due to the high inflation environment that we are living in now.”
“This will mean on average; an urban customer may see a rise of up to $1.56 per week over the 2023/24 financial year with anticipated increases over the coming 4 years of 0.6% per annum before inflation. For those customers who are tenants the average increase will be around $0.43 cents per week.”
“We have a forecast $94.8M of capital expenditure for our urban business over the next 5 years which will further enhance the water and sewer services that we provide in the Kerang through to Merbein areas of our supply district.”
“For our rural customers, our real costs were scheduled to generally decrease in a range from -6.42% to +1.27% in the coming year. With the addition of inflation, we will see a rise of between 1% and 8% across the various rural districts on average. This matches our scheduled price increase as approved by the ESC”
“Across our irrigation districts this means an increase of approximately 4% on last year.”
“LMW carried out an extensive consultation program in the build of Water Plan 5. Consultation with our rural customer committees indicated that irrigators have experienced a tough year for some crops associated with a wet start to the last season, fruit quality and disease, the Board recognises these concerns and has aimed to keep tariffs as low as possible in this high inflation environment.” Mr O’Donohue said.
“In the coming 5-year period we are looking to undertake the delivery of $43.4M in capital works across our irrigation districts and private diversion area to ensure the future viability of the irrigation region.”
“Each rural customer will receive a letter and tariff explanation sheet from LMW over the coming week which sets out the pricing.”
“We invite customers experiencing hardship or any financial difficulties to contact our office. We can often assist if we know about your difficulties. Some customers could be eligible for utility relief grants or may benefit from a payment plan”
In addition, if you need further explanation or assistance in understanding our tariffs and charges you can speak directly with our staff by calling 1800 808 830.”