Geelong household and business water bills will increase to pay for the Melbourne Geelong pipeline commissioned by the former Labor Government.
Water Minister Peter Walsh said the Essential Services Commission (ESC) had released a draft decision today which would see Barwon Water’s water charges jump by 10 per cent before inflation from 1 July 2012.
“Geelong families will suffer pricing increases to pay for Labor’s water mistakes,” Mr Walsh said.
“The former Brumby Government panicked during the drought and decided to build an $80 million pipeline to pump water from Melbourne to Geelong.
“The Melbourne Geelong interconnector was the mechanism the former Labor Government introduced so Geelong and Colac households would also pay for the desalination plant at Wonthaggi.
“Labor has condemned Geelong water customers to years of increased prices for a pipe that may never be used.”
Mr Walsh said in analysing the cost impact of the Melbourne Geelong pipeline, the ESC had uncovered $130 million in additional capital expenditure by Barwon Water that was not approved as part of the current five-year pricing plan.
Mr Walsh commended the new Barwon Water board for committing to fund almost half the cost of the Melbourne Geelong pipeline through internal cost savings and efficiencies.
The draft ESC decision has been released for public consultation before a final determination in June 2012.
Monday, April 23, 2012
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