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14 June 2018


Minister for Local Government

Fixing Tasmania’s water and sewerage

The Hodgman Liberal Government is delivering on our plan to accelerate water and sewerage infrastructure upgrades, improve the environment and keep prices lower to benefit all Tasmanians.

The 2018-19 Budget includes $80 million over 4 years towards our $200 million equity investment in TasWater, as a key element of the Memorandum of Understanding between the Hodgman Liberal Government, TasWater and local government representatives.

Under this historic agreement, Councils will collectively remain as the majority owners with the State Government becoming a shareholder once legislation is passed by both houses later this year.

The agreement will deliver a price freeze in 2019-20 and cap future increases at no more than 3.5 per cent so that Tasmanians can enjoy some of the lowest water prices in the nation.

Other key aspects include:

  • A faster fix for Tasmania’s water and sewerage infrastructure, delivering $1.8 billion in upgrades sooner than planned.
  • New shared governance arrangements.
  • State Government and Local Government to work together on infrastructure planning, ensuring a whole-of-state economic and environmental focus.
  • Ensuring that councils are no worse off so rates won’t need to rise.

This package of reforms will allow the State Government to deliver on its plan to limit price increases and accelerate infrastructure investment.  Because Council revenues will be guaranteed, they will be able to maintain a focus on important local economic issues. The

State Government will not receive a dividend from the business, freeing up more funds for infrastructure investment.

Tasmania is increasingly a destination goal for tourists and people looking to relocate and, just like locals, they all deserve modern water and sewerage infrastructure that protects the environment and is affordable.

Additionally, we are also working co-operatively with the Australian Government and local councils on a long term solution for the Tamar River catchment and Macquarie Point.

The Hodgman Liberal Government’s sole focus in the TasWater debate has been to deliver a brighter future and a better deal for Tasmanians and with the benefit of a balanced Budget and good financial management we have been able to agree on a historic ownership model that will deliver our Plan.