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O’Brien says people power will reduce energy bills

The Nationals Member for Gippsland South, Danny O’Brien says a Liberal Nationals Government will use ‘people power’ to deliver cheaper gas and electricity costs for low income earners.

A Liberal Nationals Government will organise a tender for a retail electricity and gas deal to be made available to Victoria’s low-income and vulnerable government concession recipients – 912,364 people based on most recent data.              

Mr O’Brien says this deal will use ‘people power’ to provide discounts to low income earners to help them get back in control of cost of living pressures by using a system  similar to one that operates successfully in South Australia.

In July 2017, the South Australian Government announced it would tender for a retail energy deal on behalf of the state’s more than 160,000 concession recipients.  Origin Energy won the tender and delivered a retail energy plan which offered low income participants a guaranteed 18% discount on electricity and 11% on gas.

The deal is reported to deliver savings for households on standing offers of between $253 and $531 off their annual electricity bills.

According to the Energy and Water Ombudsman (Victoria) Annual Report 2017-2018, the number of disconnections throughout the South Gippsland and Wellington Shires rose by over 32% in the last financial year.

Recent reports by the Essential Services Commission show that some Victorians may be paying as much as $1,000 more this year for their electricity and gas. Separately, St Vincent de Paul released a report saying that average annual household electricity costs are around $2,300 a year, an increase of approximately $300 from the previous year. 

“Add to that the 12 new or increased taxes under Daniel Andrews and it’s no wonder most Victorians feel they’re losing control of their personal finances,” Mr O’Brien said.

“Daniel Andrews has lost control of electricity and gas costs, only the Liberal-Nationals in government will help low-income earners get back in control of their energy bills.”

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