| August 16, 2017
Labor’s surging power price crisis
Families and businesses in the Lowan electorate are paying too much for energy, a review into Victoria’s retail energy market has found.
The Independent Review into the Electricity and Gas Retail Markets in Victoria has found regional consumers in areas with only one gas or electricity provider face significantly inflated prices.
The Nationals Member for Lowan, Emma Kealy MP said energy had become unaffordable under Daniel Andrews Labor Government.
“The report clearly states ‘strong intervention’ is required to make sure consumers are getting the best deal possible,” Ms Kealy said.
“Labor commissioned this report and appointed the investigators so they have no excuse not to act.
“Energy prices are soaring, forcing many people to go to bed cold and hungry, and Daniel Andrews is doing nothing.
“I have repeatedly approached the Minister for Energy, Environment and Climate Change, the Hon. Lily D’Ambrosio regarding excessive gas pricing and the monopoly situation that exists in the Wimmera with only one gas provider available.
“The Minister made a commitment in early 2015 to develop supply competition in the area to protect the interests of local residents but has taken no action to provide the opportunity for another provider to enter the market, leaving local residents with no choice of supplier.
“Local small businesses have reported massive increases in their gas and electricity bills to me and it is making it harder to operate in country Victoria”, she said.
The review also found a confusing pricing structure meant it was near impossible for many families and small businesses to shop around for energy deals and compare prices.
“If Daniel Andrews was serious about energy affordability for Victorian households and businesses, he wouldn’t have allowed Hazelwood Power Station to close with no backup plan”, Ms Kealy said.
“Daniel Andrews needs to act immediately on power prices instead of pointing the finger and hoping the Federal Government will fix his energy affordability mess.
"I will continue to actively pursue this important matter to ensure that fair energy prices are offered to Lowan electorate residents," she said.
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