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TasWater has announced it will run a series of community engagement consultations ahead of developing its next Price and Service Plan.

TasWater Head of Communications and Engagement, Callan Paske, said all Tasmanians were invited to join in the conversation about shaping the state’s water future and finding the right balance between price and service that will help the state thrive.

Callan Paske - Head of Communications & Engagement - TasWater

TasWater Head of Communications & Engagement, Callan Paske. Courtesy of TasWater.

“Water isn’t just our thing, it’s Tasmania’s thing, and we want to make sure everyone has a say about what’s important to them and how we should be shaping the future of water in the state,” Mr Paske said.

“Every four years our Price and Service Plan is approved by the independent Economic Regulator, spelling out our commitment to our customers.

“This time around we want all Tasmanians to have an input into the plan, so it truly reflects the needs of our customers, communities, and the environment.

“This is the largest scale community engagement we’ve ever undertaken, and we are excited to get as many Tasmanians on board for the ride as possible.

“By understanding local experiences and expectations we will be better able to deliver a plan that meets their needs when it comes to the supply of water and sewerage services and our contribution to the Tasmanian community as a whole.

“We have unique assets, our climate is changing, and customer expectations are growing.

“We need to prepare for tomorrow while being fair to customers today,” Mr Paske said.

Over the next six months, there will be many ways that people can have their say.

Registrations are open until the start of May 2024, and this will be followed by three months of community and customer engagement through community pop-ups, surveys, and engagement forums.

“From July to September a representative community panel will take a deep dive into what matters most to Tasmanians, based on what we’ve heard,” Mr Paske said.

“Participants can influence things such as the method for calculating water and sewerage charges, the right levels of service, and how we prioritise our efforts.

“We know people care about these things and now is the time for them to have their say.”

TasWater has collaborated with councils, the community sector, peak bodies, and consumer advocacy groups to develop this engagement plan, ensuring it’s truly inclusive of all Tasmanians’ voices.

Tasmanian Hospitality Association Chief Executive Officer, Steve Old, said, “It’s so important to make sure you’ve heard plenty of different voices and perspectives when developing a multi-year plan like this.

“All small business owners need to have a first-class service they can rely on, but like everyone else they are feeling the pinch too.

“Pubs, cafes and restaurants are also community hubs, and their owners want to know that getting a reliable service is not at the expense of the amenity of the towns they operate in, and the surrounding environment,” Mr Old said.

Civil Contractors Federation (CCF) Chief Executive Officer, Andrew Winch, said his organisation had been approached early by TasWater.

“We valued the chance to join with other industry and community stakeholders in September last year to have an early say on TasWater’s plan to engage with Tasmanians in 2024.

“The capital works projects that TasWater will roll out in the next price and service plan will play an important role in the continued growth of the civil construction sector which is a major employer across the state.

“CCF Tasmania is very supportive of Tasmanians having the opportunity to comment on the framework for that capital investment to make sure it delivers for customers and encourages economic growth.

“We look forward to working with TasWater over the coming years and encourage all Tasmanian to have their say,” Mr Winch said.

TasWater is set to share the full draft report in March 2025, with the outcomes to inform the price submission before it is submitted to the Economic Regulator in July 2025.

To find out more about the process and how you can get involved, visit www.taswater.com.au/yoursay.

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