Hobart, Australia — (METERING.COM) — December 1, 2009 – Water meters are expected to be rolled out across Tasmania by 2012-13, enabling householders to monitor their water usage and to be billed on consumption.
In a major water and sewerage announcement Tasmania premier David Bartlett said that while water meters had been in place for years in many areas of Northern Tasmania, the state government supported their installation statewide, including in Hobart.
“One of the constant criticisms I hear is that there does not seem to be any clear link between the amount of water a person uses and the size of their bill,” said Bartlett. “Water and sewerage bills need to be fair and there needs to be a clearly understood rationale for the size of bills. The best way to ensure this is to ensure people pay for what they use.”
Barlett said the state government would release a cost-benefit analysis report on water metering for public comment, and that the cost of the meter would be built into the fixed charge for services over 10 years so that customers will not face up-front costs.
Moreover the state government will also make a submission this week to the national government to seek to secure $10 million in funding to support a universal meter rollout, which would significantly reduce costs.
Consumers in parts of Tasmania that already have water meters are billed on a two-part pricing model – a fixed charge and a charge for the water they actually use. This model will then apply statewide from 2012-13 once meters are in place in all the major population centers.
In the announcement Bartlett also capped water and sewerage bill increases at 5 percent and he boosted concessions for low income earners. Bartlett also said that consumers renting their homes would not receive a water and sewerage bill until the water meters had been introduced statewide.