Individual water meters
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The Australian Capital Territory Government is working with Icon Water and the Unit Titles Reform Project Consultative Group to progress a proposal for individual water metering for new unit developments.  

The proposal is designed to create a fairer water billing system for Canberrans living in apartments. 

ACT Minister for Planning, Chris Steel, said, “People living in mixed-use unit titled developments in the ACT currently pay a fixed charge for water which was divided up between all unit owners regardless of how much water they used. Individual water metering means unit owners will only pay for the water they use.  

“As our city continues to grow, and we focus on delivering more types of housing choice, it’s important that we modernise water metering in mixed use developments, townhouses and duplexes.”  

New requirements will apply to development applications lodged from 1 January 2025 for Class B units (generally townhouse type developments), and from 1 July 2028 for Class A units (generally multi-storey developments). Proponents can opt-in earlier to the new requirements if they choose. 

“For existing unit developments, the owners corporation can determine different ways of calculating contribution levies, such as water billing. For example, in a mixed-use development with commercial and residential units, a commercial operator that uses a high volume of water may be charged proportionally more, if agreed by the owners corporation by special resolution,” said Mr Steel.  

ACT Minister for Water, Energy and Emissions Reduction, Shane Rattenbury, said individual water metering will make the system fairer and encourage people to conserve water. 

“Water is a finite resource, and we know that the ACT is sometimes impacted by extended dry periods which will only become more frequent and severe with climate change,” Mr Rattenbury said.  

“Individual billing will allow each household to see how much water they use, enabling them to see where there might be opportunities to reduce water use. Using water more efficiently reduces environmental impacts and saving households money. 

“Icon Water will be responsible for implementing the new metering system. Data will be collected from the meters by Icon Water to inform them to make decisions about water supply infrastructure, identify any leaks and support faster repairs. 

“I look forward to seeing the benefits of the new metering system for apartment residents and the environment over the coming months and years,” Mr Rattenbury said. 

Image: EvgenProzhyrko/shutterstock.com

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