The Andrews Labor Government is acting to speed up electricity connections to new residential developments by making the Industry more transparent and accountable, improving the supply of new housing for Victorians.
The Essential Services Commission (ESC) will soon start implementing improvements to the regulatory framework to reduce delays in connection times.
Where delays do occur, there is transparency for developers, distribution companies, and other stakeholders as to the cause of the delays. The changes are all aimed at getting Victorians into their new homes sooner.
In May, the Labor Government commissioned the ESC to report back on issues regarding greenfield electricity connections and provide recommendations for a way forward.
The ESC report recommends a broad range of cross-sector solutions to address these delays, including
- Service Improvement Commitment, including performance reporting
- regulatory support through an online monitoring portal and review of codes and guidelines
- Victorian Government support in the form or training processes and cross agency co-ordination
- active participation of the development industry through participation in committees, providing feedback on relevant regulatory processes, and providing the ESC with information.
All five Victorian electricity distribution businesses have agreed to a Service Improvement Commitment to improve their customer service focus, minimise delays, and improve how technical standards and audits are performed.
The success of these initiatives will be monitored by a governance committee, to be established by the ESC, with the first meeting to be held in October.
The Government is also aware that issues around electrical connections is not just limited to greenfield developments, there are also concerns around brownfield sites that may also be addressed by the improved effectiveness of the regulatory framework. The full report can be found on the ESC website.
As noted by Treasurer Tim Pallas
“We’re acting to make sure new homes are connected to electricity faster, cutting costs, and making it easier for Victorians to access new housing.”
“These solutions will help improve response times and ensure better communications between electricity distribution businesses and the development industry.”
As noted by UDIA Chief Executive Officer Danni Addison
“This will help Victorians get the housing they need, at the pace they need.”
“We applaud the Essential Services Commission and the Andrews Government for collaborating with industry to take real action that will boost housing supply and help affordability.”