Households and businesses will be slugged with higher electricity bills because the Andrews Labor Government has sabotaged electricity pricing reforms. In 2014, the Australian Energy Market Commission amended the National Electricity Rules to force power distributors to adopt flexible pricing following the rollout of smart meters.
During a visit to local manufacturing company Findlay Engineering, Shadow Minister for Energy and Resources, David Southwick MP and Joshua Morris MP called on Daniel Andrews to commit to energy market reform and tackle soaring energy prices.
“Labor’s Smart Meter program disaster has pushed up the power bills of Victorian households and businesses by $2.23 billion.
“Victorians will now be slugged with even higher electricity bills after Daniel Andrews turned his back on energy reforms that utilise smart meters,” Mr Southwick added.
Based on Victorian trials, the Australian Energy Market Commission found a small business could save up to $2,118 or 34% of its total annual electricity network charges under the ‘opt-out’ proposed reforms by using less electricity at peak times for just 20 hours per year when networks are congested. The Australian Energy Regulator estimated that most Victorians would save $41 to $99 on their electricity bills per year, with some saving up to $450 annually.
Mr Morris said that the Andrews Government’s decision would hurt local families and businesses like Findlay Engineering.
“Higher energy prices affect the cost of living for local families and the cost of doing business here in Ballarat,” Mr Morris said.
“We need to support local businesses that provide jobs here in Ballarat and across Victoria, not put them in jeopardy by increasing power prices.”