Two innovative community rebate programs funded by the Andrews Labor Government are helping Victorians doing it tough to reduce their water bills.
Minister for Water Lisa Neville said almost 11,000 Victorian customers have taken advantage of the Community Rebate Program to help their vulnerable and customers and those experiencing hardship.
Since July 2015 these customers have saved an estimated 212 million litres of water, which equates to over $700,000 – or $65 per customer – per year.
Many customers report having water leaks or inefficient appliances but can’t afford the cost of repair or replacement.
Through the Community Rebate Program, the water corporations will send someone out to the customer’s house to replace a showerhead, change to a dual or low flush toilet, install flow control devices or repair or fix inefficient water fittings. All costs are covered up-front by the grants program.
A key element of the Community Rebate Program is educating vulnerable and hardship customers about water efficiency measures so they can control their water usage and costs.
The program will continue until 2020 and is expected to assist an additional 5,000 customers.
The Labor Government is also funding the Community Housing Retrofit Pilot Program, which provides assistance to emergency and community housing owned or managed by community welfare organisations.
This pilot has helped over 300 community housing properties save around 32 million litres of water per year, equating to around $75,000, or $250 per property, per year.
The Pilot is being tested in Melbourne, and the Central Highlands and Lower Murray regions.
Minister for Water Lisa Neville said “With dry and drought conditions in parts of the state, it has never been a better time for Victorians think about how to use water wisely.”
“Victorians are already pretty water-wise – reducing average water use from 245 GL a day in 2001 to 161 GL a day last year – but sometimes there are small leaks or inefficient devices that can add to water bills over time.”
“This program provides a free service to help fix these minor problems for those doing it tough, helping them save money and increase our water storages.”