Council to lobby State Government to introduce water leaks rebate

Redland City Council today voted unanimously to lobby the Queensland Government to introduce a policy to reimburse residents for concealed water leaks.

Mayor Karen Williams said the Government had a moral obligation to implement a policy to complement a Council reimbursement policy already in place.

“Council is seeking a collaboration with the State Government by supporting a new State Government bulk water concealed leaks policy,” she said.

“The State Government is responsible for more than 80 per cent of resident’s water consumption price, yet offers no assistance at all if a Redlands Coast resident finds a concealed leak.

“Council’s component of a resident’s water consumption price is about 16 per cent and we already have our own policy in place to reimburse residents for this component.

“They can claim a rebate from Council covering a portion of the lost water costs, but the vast majority of the charge has been levied by the State Government, which disappointingly has no policy to assist in the event of a leak.”

Total water charges to Redlands Coast residents are currently included in rates notices issued by Council.

  • Council retail water price – $0.629 per kilolitre
  • State bulk water price – $3.231 per kilolitre.

“State-imposed bulk water charges have more than doubled since 2012 and Council believes the Government has a moral obligation to reimburse some of the funds it receives from residents who discover a concealed leak on their property,” Cr Williams said.

“We have been lobbying the State unsuccessfully for many years to accept their responsibility and implement a concealed leaks policy to complement our own.

“Our pleas have so far fallen on deaf ears, but now Council has urged local State MPs to consider the inequity that currently exists and support our crusade to convince the Government of the need to soften its thinking and do something for hard-hit residents.

“I know some of our fellow South East Queensland Councils have had similar situations and no doubt they will support our calls for such a policy.”

Council resolved today to write to the Government and Seqwater and request they support Council’s existing concealed leaks policy by implementing a new policy to cover the State Government’s bulk water component of water consumption in Redland City.

To allow time to enact changes for next year’s Budget, Council has asked for the State Government to advise if it enacted such a policy by February 2022.

Subject to a State concealed leaks policy being implemented by February next year, Council will then consider any policy change to complement the new bulk water rebate to further assist ratepayers.