Published: March 02, 2011 - 11:00 AM
Prices in NSW set to rise by at least 16%
The NSW independent electricity and gas pricing regulator IPART has caused controversy by holding back a report that is widely expected to announce electricity prices in NSW will rise by 16%. The report is now anticipated to be released after the state election on March 26th.
Liberal Party leader Barry O'Farrell has strongly demanded that the price report be released before the election and questioned the independence of the regulator, with several IPART directors revealed to be former Labor Government political staff.
"Someone has forgotten the 'I' in IPART, which stands for independent." Mr O'Farrell said.
"It is bad enough Kristina Keneally shut down Parliament early to stop the truth coming out about the bungled sale of our electricity assets, but it's absolutely disgraceful Labor is prepared to cover up a report which warns families that they are facing more huge rises in their power bills,"
"Kristina Keneally needs to come clean on whether Government officials or former Labor staffers put pressure on IPART to put this publication off until after the election."
Last year IPART approved an 11% increase to NSW households, but this is now expected to rise to at least 16% so the NSW energy retailers can fund the Federal Government's green energy schemes such as the Renewable Energy Targets (RET), which began in January.
The federal RET scheme requires that 20 per cent of Australia's electricity supply be from renewable sources by 2020.
Alison Walter of ShopAround.com.au said "There are new retailers with very competitive plans entering the New South Wales electricity market all the time. It's up to consumers to ensure check that their electricity company is giving them the cheapest electricity price."
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