An increase in some residents' water bills can be put down to excessive use, says Deniliquin Council general manager Des Bilske.ZOE MCMAUGH May 13, 2014 4:05am
Many Deniliquin residents are questioning what they say are excessively high water usage charges.
The Pastoral Times received several complaints from angry residents after their water bills arrived on Friday, some indicating a price hike of almost $200 from their last bill.
Deniliquin Council general manager Des Bilske said the increases were more likely associated with water usage and not the computer glitch that affected recent rates notices.
‘‘The computer glitch was about the division of rates, which were split incorrectly, but the overall rates bill was still the same,’’ Mr Bilske said.
‘‘Some people’s water bills may still be reflective of that, but this was from a slightly different billing period as well — water use does tend to increase over summer.
‘‘We also have some people who have used over 800 kilolitres of water in this financial year, which takes them to the higher tier of charges.
‘‘Usage goes up from 60 cents a kilolitre to $1 a kilolitre if you have used more than 800kl (in the financial year).’’
Households receive three water usage charges per year, with the 800kl usage benchmark designed to encourage people to use water more efficiently.
This latest charge would take in the drier summer months and is the last for this financial year.
One ratepayer, who would like to remain anonymous, said her water charges jumped from $70 to $320.
‘‘When we paid the bill last time it was only $70 and we questioned whether it was correct,’’ the ratepayer said.
‘‘Everyone seems to be saying they have had a huge rise in water charges .
‘‘For four months, $320 is a lot and we’re not happy about it. It’s a lot of money and I’m worried about retired people and pensioners — how would they be able to afford it?’’
Another ratepayer said he experienced a similar increase, with his bill jumping from $28 to $150.
‘‘I was a bit surprised to see the bill as there had been no notice of any hike. I don’t know why the bill is so high?
‘‘I have a pretty big water tank, about 10,000 litres, and we always use the last drop of that before the next rain.
‘‘I have also noticed the quality (of tap water) has dropped a bit too. I don’t mind having to pay a little bit extra, but it has got to be worth it.
‘‘We have huge rates already, then we have a water bill like this on top.’’
The bill concerns come as Deniliquin Council prepares to adopt a budget which includes a ‘‘slight’’ increase in water charges.
Mr Bilske said councillors were considering increasing water usage charges by ‘‘a few cents per kilolitre’’ in budget deliberations, but that the water access charge may be reduced to balance it out.
He said council had been listed by the 2012-13 NSW Water Supply Report as having the fourth lowest charges in the state.
Milk processor Murray Goulburn has recorded a net profit after tax of $40 million for the last financial year.
The first preliminary final on Saturday saw the Tungamah seniors start their campaign against Waaia at the Rennie Recreation Reserve.
The Aboriginal and wider community is mourning the death of revered Bangerang Aboriginal elder, Uncle John ‘‘Sandy’’ Atkinson.
THE Riverine Herald’s echucamoama magazine has been named Victorian Country Press Association open section magazine of the year.
THE best thing about memories is making them.
LEGACY Week starts next week across Australia and Kyabram Legatee volunteers will be out across the district selling merchandise to raise funds for the families of servicemen who have died.
Avenel win over Nagambie to take top spot
Berrigan Shire councillor Daryll Morris says he has been sickened by some of the vitriol and personal attacks to surface since the council’s proposal to redevelop Finley’s Memorial Hall and School of Arts site was revealed in October last year.
MAYBE you’re on a trip to Melbourne, your taste buds are feeling adventurous or you just want to “shoot the breeze”.
The preparations for the 10th Cobram Swap Meet have been given a boost with a brand new line marker. The Rotary Club of Cobram, which organise the swap meet, applied for a volunteer grant from the Federal Government, from which it received $4600.
Deni’s Debutante Ball gurus Vicki Ackers and Deb O’Connor love working with youth.
Tuesday, August 16
The News magazines are online - read high quality magazines in your time. Check in regularly for the latest editions.
Riverine Herald's well regarded locally produced magazines. They're now online, so you can read them whenever and wherever you like.
Search for published and unpublished photos from McPherson Media Group newspapers and magazines. All our photos are available to purchase.
Place an advertisement in any one of McPherson Media Group's local newspapers.