• community

    Your Voice Our Coast

It's time to talk water, sewer and stormwater prices

It's time to talk water, sewer and stormwater prices

It's time to talk water, sewer and stormwater prices

Did you know your water, sewer and stormwater prices are set by the Independent Pricing and Regulatory Tribunal, also known as IPART?

Council is developing its pricing submission to IPART for the period 1 July 2022 to 30 June 2026.

Background

IPART sets the prices for the water, sewer and stormwater services provided by Central Coast Council.

In 2018, IPART set Council’s prices for water, sewer and stormwater services for a three-year period, from 1 July 2019 to 30 June 2022, following a pricing submission made by Council. Typically a pricing determination goes for four years, however IPART set it for a three-year period due to the newly merged Council.

Council’s next pricing submission is due for lodgement with IPART in September 2021 and will determine what prices Council can charge for these services from 1 July 2022 until 30 June 2026.

Council's final submission will outline proposed service levels and prices for water, sewer and stormwater.

Current prices will not change until a new determination is made. Any changes made as a result of the new determination will come in to effect from 1 July 2022.

Have your say

To understand what is important to you in regards to your water, sewer and stormwater services, we ran an online survey from 1-28 March 2021. This feedback will help shape Council's submission to IPART. This survey is now closed. 

After we provide IPART with our submission, IPART will release an Issues Paper and you will have the opportunity to provide further comment at this time.

The community are invited to:

Council are required to prepare and lodge this submission on water, sewer and stormwater prices due to timing previously set by IPART – it has not been brought forward in line with Council's application to IPART for a Special Variation on rates.

Open

Segmented Documents

Doc View
Document Collaps

Timeline

2
Council develops a draft submission
×

Who's listening

Who's listening
Name
IPART Team
Phone
1300 463 954

Frequently asked questions

How can I have my say?

To understand what is important to you in regards to your water, sewer and stormwater services, we ran an online survey from 1-28 March 2021. This feedback will help shape Council's submission to IPART. This survey is now closed. 

After we provide IPART with our submission, IPART will release an Issues Paper and you will have the opportunity to provide further comment at this time.

How long will the prices be in place for?

Council’s proposal is that prices be set for four years (1 July 2022 – 30 June 2026) but the final decision will be made by IPART.

Council has proposed that prices will be increased by the rate of inflation only, on 1 July each year, for the duration of the determination.

Why is a new IPART water pricing submission being made just two years after the last one in 2019? Is this the normal frequency and if not why the sudden change in frequency? 

In 2018, IPART set Council’s prices for water, sewerage, and stormwater services for a three-year period, from 1 July 2019 to 30 June 2022, following a pricing submission made by Council. Typically, a pricing determination goes for four years, however IPART set it for a three-year period due to the newly merged Council. 

Council’s next pricing submission is due for lodgement with IPART in September 2021 and will determine Council’s prices for those services from 1 July 2022 until 30 June 2026. 

For Council to prepare its current pricing proposal to IPART, a rigorous process is undertaken where business cases for expenditure need to be completed as well as asset management plans and community consultation. 

Once the pricing submission is sent to IPART (September 2021) it will be another 9 months before price changes are implemented, which brings us to 1 July 2022. 

The fact that Council are preparing the proposal now is due to the timing set by IPART. It has not been brought forward in line with the Special Variation application submitted to IPART by Council as part of its Business Recovery Plan.

The previous IPART ruling reduced our water and sewer prices. Will it be recommended as part of our 2022-2026 IPART submission that these prices be lowered, stay the same or raised? 

Council, as a water supply authority, do not set the prices for water, sewer or stormwater. As part of the IPART submission, we request a certain amount of money for expenditure on asset maintenance, asset renewals and building new infrastructure. This is to address our ageing infrastructure as well as maintaining our legislated environmental standards for treatment of both water and sewerage. 

It is up to IPART to review our requested expenditure to determine whether the prices are lowered, stay the same or raised. A balance is made to ensure our assets provide the services expected by our community while maintaining fair and reasonable pricing. 

In our previous submission to IPART in 2018, IPART reduced our expenditure allowance which resulted in the prices for water, sewage and stormwater being lower– the less expenditure, the less that can be charged for water, sewage and stormwater prices and vice versa. 

We will not know the figure of our required future expenditure until late 2021, when we are finalising our submission to IPART, as there are many variables that impact this.

How is this submission to IPART different from the Special Variation application to IPART?

Council has resolved to consider applying to IPART for a rate rise to help with Council’s financial recovery. This process is called a Special Variation (SV) application and is a one-off application.

As for the submission to IPART for our water, stormwater and sewage prices, this is done on a regular basis in accordance with legislated requirements, and Council’s next pricing submission is due for lodgement with IPART in September 2021. 

The fact that Council are preparing the proposal now is due to the timing set by IPART. It has not been brought forward in line with the Special Variation.

When will my bill change?

You will see the result of IPART’s final determination on your first bill after 1 July 2022.

Why haven’t you increased the pensioner rebate?

The pensioner rebate for the Central Coast is set by the Water Management Act 2000.

Council’s submission expresses its support for a NSW Government review of the sufficiency and
methodology for calculating water and sewerage pensioner rebates.

Why are retirement villages charged based on the size of their meter?

As retirement villages are a commercial business, Council has proposed that they continue to be
charged on the size of their water meter.

This is consistent with the way retirement villages are charged by other NSW Councils, Sydney Water and Hunter Water.

Council’s analysis of the typical bills retirement village residents could expect shows that the majority of these residents already pay less than the typical equivalent residents in a standalone home.

My property is located in the non-declared drainage area of the Central Coast. Will I be charged for drainage?

We are proposing that charges relating to properties currently located in a non-declared drainage area remain the same during the next 4-year IPART determination commencing on 1 July 2022. This means your property will continue to be charged water and sewer rates, and will not be levied the stormwater drainage charge.

Where's it happening?

Get the latest news