A combination of early meter readings before Christmas and rainfall hitting an 80 year low have caused some residents of the Rockhampton Region to receive higher water bills than normal recently.
Rockhampton Regional Council CEO, Evan Pardon, explained that while variations across the year usually even out, the most recent quarter had seen a bit of a double whammy for some customers when it came to the bills.
“There are a few factors in play here: when meter readings are taken, higher than usual usage during some very dry weather, and our tiered pricing structure,” said Mr Pardon.
“To ensure bills were generated before the Christmas shut down, meters were read a little earlier than usual to avoid an extended billing period – but still within the targeted time set under our policy. This meant people’s bills for Q2 covered a slightly shorter period of time than usual, and the bills for Q3 covered a slightly longer period of time than usual.
“During Q2 and Q3 we also saw an increase in water usage thanks to the drier weather – the increase was as high as 26% in some cases.
“Some customers have therefore found themselves in a situation where they not only had a longer billing period but also used significantly more water, which pushed some of their consumption into the higher pricing tier.”