Some win, some lose in water price proposal

SIX councils across south-east Queensland could see their water prices fall after the state's competition authority released its draft bulk water prices for the next three years.

But five councils across the south-east corner could see their prices rise under the draft proposal.

Residents living in the Somerset, Logan, Scenic Rim, Lockyer Valley, Gold Coast and Moreton Bay regions could see their bulk water prices drop - up to 11.7% in some instances.

But residents living in the Sunshine Coast, Noosa, Ipswich, Redland and Brisbane regions could see their prices rise from between 3.6% and 9.7% over the next three years if the draft receives the tick of approval.

Queensland Competition Authority chairman Malcolm Roberts said on Wednesday the price increases are lower than previously forecast after the last report suggested increases of up to 12%.

But he said efficiency savings at Seqwater had resulted in the common water price being 14% lower at $2.77 per 1000 litres over the next three years.

"For historical reasons bulk water prices vary from council to council, but by the end of the decade a single common price is expected to apply across south-east Queensland," he said.

"Not only is the 2017-18 common price now expected to be lower, it will be lower than the bulk water prices paid by some council areas today.

"On the other hand, some council areas are paying less for bulk water and will therefore see increases in 2015-16."

Seqwater provides bulk water services which include storing water in dams, treating water and delivering treated water to retailers for sale to customers, to the 11 council areas across south-east Queensland.

The final report is due before March 31 next year.

- APN NEWSDESK



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