Council backs Seqwater calls for state concealed leaks support

Redland City Council is encouraging water retailers, the State Government and Seqwater to work together on a policy that could save residents thousands of dollars as a result of concealed water leaks.

Redland City Mayor Karen Williams said Councillors were encouraging the collaborative approach in support of a Seqwater submission to the Queensland Competition Authority calling for a discount for residents who lose water as a result of a concealed leak.

“Redland City Council has had a concealed leaks policy for more than 20 years, which has provided valuable support to residents to cover the Council water consumption cost of water lost through a concealed leak,” Cr Williams said.

“As we know, however, the majority of water consumption costs are made up of the State Government bulk water price and currently the State Government doesn’t have a policy for customers to recoup the cost of the bulk water lost through a concealed leak.

“Late last year the State Government’s own bulk water provider Seqwater called for such a policy to be introduced in a submission to the Queensland Competition Authority, and today Councillors voted to support this submission.”

Cr Williams said a collaborative approach was needed to ensure residents weren’t left out of pocket.

“Last year Council spent $42 million buying bulk water from the State Government’s bulk water provider Seqwater, that is a huge impost on residents,” Cr Williams said.

“Despite this significant cost, when our residents lose water through a concealed leak there is no way for them to recoup the cost of that bulk water from the State Government, leaving ratepayers to cover the cost.

“Over the last 20 years Council has supported residents through our policy and now we are calling for the State Government to join us in supporting the community.”

Cr Williams said such a policy would support the Seqwater submission and create a collaborative approach to supporting our communities.

“People want different levels of government to work together and so I am hoping the State Government, Seqwater and all water retailers will come to the table and work with Council to support the community,” Cr Williams said.

“This approach would also support the amended policy adopted by Council at the end of last year, which extends the financial support available to residents facing extenuating circumstances.”