The Independent Pricing and Regulatory Tribunal (IPART) is seeking feedback on potential changes to the Hunter Water Operating Licence.
The review will consider potential improvements to customer protections. It will also look at reducing duplication of regulatory functions with NSW Health and the Environment Protection Authority (EPA).
The operating licence sets the terms under which Hunter Water must provide water and sewerage services for the Lower Hunter region. It sets the quality and performance standards that Hunter Water must comply with, including water quality standards and standards regulating service interruptions. It also includes terms and conditions requiring Hunter Water to undertake water conservation, for protecting customers’ right and consulting with customers, for managing Hunter Water’s assets and environmental activities.
We are seeking feedback from all stakeholders, including Hunter Water’s customers and consumers who use Hunter Water’s services, on the issues we have identified and anything else that matters to them.
Our Issues Paper explains how we propose to undertake our review, and the questions on which we seek feedback. We invite submissions from all interested parties on these questions due by 15 November 2021. (We provided an extension from the original submission date in the Issues Paper published on 2 September 2021 but made no other changes.)
On 8 October, Hunter Water provided part of its submission responding to many of the questions in our Issues Paper (including Hunter Water’s proposed changes to the Customer Contract). On 1 November, Hunter Water provided the remainder of its submission to the Issues Paper, focusing on System Performance Standards.
We have published these submissions to allow other stakeholders time to consider Hunter Water’s views, and proposed customer contract, when preparing their own submissions due on 15 November 2021. Hunter Water’s submissions are available for viewing from the above timeline and also under submissions to the Issues Paper.