SA energy discount tender for low income households

More than 180,000 low-income South Australian households will get the opportunity to sign up for a new energy discount offer to reduce the cost of electricity compared to the standing contract price.

 

The State Government will invite energy retailers to submit expressions of interest to become preferred suppliers to low income households that currently receive energy concessions.

 

A retailer, or panel of retailers, will be chosen through an open and competitive process.

 

In exchange, the retailers will be asked to offer additional benefits for eligible customers including better prices, bill-smoothing and/or flexible payment options.

 

As part of tender process, retailers will be asked to demonstrate how they will assist concession holders to make the transition to the new offer.

 

Key groups that are likely to benefit include older South Australians, public and community housing tenants and people with disability or medical conditions that reduce their ability to earn income.

 

Concession holders will have the option of remaining on their existing plans if they choose.

 

The State Government provides concessions totalling $170 million to more than 180,000 households for expenses including energy, water, sewerage, the Emergency Services Levy and the Cost of Living Concession.

 

The Government also offers other initiatives to relieve cost of living pressures and save energy, which include:

  • Installation of solar hot water systems and solar panels on public housing and allowing tenants to install their own solar panels
  • More than $200 million per annum provided as income-based rent reductions in public housing
  • The Energy Advisory Service (www.sa.gov.au/energy) which offers free independent information about saving energy in your home.

Communities and Social Inclusion Minister Zoe Bettison said the new initiative will help low income and vulnerable households to get extra help with their energy costs.

 

We know the majority of people receiving the State Government’s energy concessions are on standing contracts and we believe we can negotiate a much better deal for them.

 

South Australia currently has the highest electricity prices of any state in Australia.

 

6 August 2017.