Hunter Water is encouraging its customers to get in touch if they need help paying their water bills, with a range of assistance programs and support services available.
The advice comes as the average residential water and wastewater bill in the Lower Hunter will increase by about $21 a billing cycle from 1 July 2022 due to national inflation.
Hunter Water is a regulated monopoly service provider with prices set by the Independent Pricing and Regulatory Tribunal (IPART). Consistent with IPART’s determination, Hunter Water’s prices are adjusted each year consistent with national Consumer Price Index (CPI) inflation.
“We understand that any bill increase adds to the pressure on households and businesses in our region,” said Executive Manager of Customer Services, Matt Hingston.
From 1 July 2022, the average household’s combined water and wastewater bill will increase to $1250 per year, while the average pensioner’s water bill will increase to $678 per year.
“Like many households and businesses, Hunter Water is also experiencing inflating costs in the delivery of our services, especially increasing material costs for construction and maintenance,” said Mr Hingston.
From 1 July, the Pension Rebate will increase to $354 per eligible property, a boost of $900,000 across the Lower Hunter. In the current financial year, Hunter Water’s Pension Rebate was provided to 50,000 Hunter households, with support totalling $15 million.
Pensioners who are already registered with Hunter Water will receive the increase automatically. For those eligible customers who are not yet registered, please contact Hunter Water online or over the phone to enrol for the rebate.
In addition to the increased Pension Rebate, tailored support is available for any customer or water bill-paying private tenant experiencing financial difficulties, including account extensions, interest- free payment relief and flexible payment options such as Easy Pay.
“We encourage our customers to get in touch with our dedicated customer assistance team to find out how we can help,” Mr Hingston said.
IPART will next review Hunter Water prices in 2024, with the new prices to apply from 1 July 2025. From later this year, Hunter Water will be engaging with our community to gain their insights to feed into our next pricing proposal.
Customers are at the heart of all we do. We have a range of assistance programs and support services available to help you pay your bill.