There’s some relief in sight from electricity household charges, writes Premier Campbell Newman.

As a government, we are always looking at ways to lower the cost of living for families.

Recently we announced a five per cent reduction in transport fares and just last week, I was excited to announce our plan to bring down electricity prices.

Currently, the cost of the solar bonus scheme makes up six per cent of a typical household electricity bill, and that’s forecast to grow if nothing is done.

Our plan ensures Queenslanders no longer have to subsidise the cost of solar usage through their power bills.

Importantly, under our plan there will be no change for existing solar customers. Put simply, instead of their feed-in payments coming from the price of electricity and paid by all Queenslanders, it will come from the Strong Choices Cost of Living Fund.

What this means is the average Queensland household will save $577 on their power bills over the next five years while households which also have tariff 33 for hot water systems or pool filters may expect to save a further $165 during that time.

Strong Choices Electricity Price Relief is the final component of the Strong Choices final plan, which is expected to yield $37 billion through the lease of some government-owned assets. Those funds will be allocated as follows:

  • $25 billion to reduce State debt from $80 billion to a manageable $55 billion, with annual interest payments reduced from $4 billion to $2.7 billion, a saving of $1.3 billion a year.
  • $8.6 billion to establish the Strong Choices Future Investment Program, which will create 11 separate funds, each of which is dedicated to supporting infrastructure considered vital to economic growth, jobs and vibrancy of regional communities.
  • $3.4 billion to create the Cost of Living Fund, now to be used to finance Strong Choices Electricity Price Relief.

However none of these proposals will be implemented until the government has received a mandate for the plan at the next State election.

We have a strong plan to lower the cost of living pressures so families spend less time worrying about bills and more time with their loved ones.