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Power bill freeze over with electricity prices to rise

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Power prices will continue to rise for at least three more years — albeit at just the rate of inflation.

Mark McGowan, in his first Budget as Treasurer, has done away with his power bill freeze policy of 2020 and will instead increase power bills by the rate of inflation till at least 2024-25.

And the $600 household electricity credit, paid to West Australians last summer, has also been axed.

Budget papers show residential power bills have increased 1.75 per cent this year and next year — with 2 per cent in 2023 and 2 per cent in 2024.

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Water bills have also gone up 1.75 per cent this year, with Treasury assumptions that household water, wastewater and drainage tariffs will increase in line with current inflation forecasts over the forward estimates.

An average West Australian family will pay $6381.91 for a basket of household fees and charges this financial year.

This is a 1.6 per cent increase on last financial year.

The average power bill will be $1779 this year, while the average water bill will be $1759.

As was announced earlier this year, there will now be a two-zone fare cap on Transperth fares — beginning on January 1, 2022.

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Treasury estimates this will save some households up to $8.20 per one-way fare for every trip.

A household living in Dawesville could potentially save $3000 a year.

The Emergency Services Levy has risen from $271.47 to $283.09 in 2021-22 and the motor vehicle licence charge has risen from $384 last financial year to $399 this year.

“This year we are spending about $397 million to limit cost of living pressures including our commitment to cap household water and electricity prices to inflation as well as providing further support to customers most in need,” Mr McGowan said.

“This comes on top of the $600 Household Electricity Credit we provided last year to reduce the average household’s fees and charges by 10.4 per cent.”

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