Queensland Treasurer rejects calls for increase in Logan water prices

Posted 13 September 2017

Australian banknotes
Political strife has erupted over Logan City Council’s water pricing following the south-east Queensland district’s lowered water consumption. 

Queensland Treasurer Curtis Pitt commented on Logan’s drop in water consumption, which has led to a dip in revenue, in the State Parliament last month.  

“Water demand in the region has been lower than expected. However, there is no expectation that lower consumption levels should inevitably result in consumers paying more for water,” he told the parliament on 8 August.

Pitt said state bulk water charges were only “about a third” of a typical household’s water bill. 

Logan was one of five councils to receive a cut in state water charges in 2015, when the Queensland Government dropped its bulk water fee to the council by 6.7%.

Pitt told Parliament that lower consumption would allow the state to delay improvements to the region’s water network until 2040, which he said would keep costs down.

But Logan City Councillor Phil Pidgeon told Quest News that Pitt’s assessments were incorrect and that Logan’s state bulk water charges were closer to 75%.

“It is highly offensive to the people of Logan and to our intelligence that you would even think about trying to group council’s sewer charge and water charge into one and then try and paint a picture that you are only a third of the bill,” Pidgeon said.

“Council has listened to its residents and froze its water charges for this year.”

The Queensland Competition Authority is reviewing Seqwater’s pricing with a draft report due in November.
Related articles:
Water utility requests price hike in Queensland
State budget deficits exacerbate hikes in water prices