Shadow Treasurer Curtis Pitt says the Newman Government needs to explain how it will turn possible jumps in power bills of up to $500 a year into its promised ongoing saving of $120 a year for all Queensland households.
“The latest proposed price rise shows how badly the LNP misled voters at the last election when they guaranteed they could lower the cost of living,” Mr Pitt said.
“So far they have delivered nothing resembling their promises to cut power prices, car rego or water bills.
“The Queensland Competition Authority report (page 101) shows that an average rise of 21% or $253 a year in Tariff 11 translates to rises of anywhere from $123 up to more than $500 a year depending on household types.
“The bottom line is that the Premier and the Treasurer said before the 2012 election they had an answer to power price rises, so now it is their responsibility to outline what they plan to do to cut bills by $120 a year.
“This mean and tricky LNP government is now trying to renege on its promise by claiming it was only ever a one-off $120 saving, but their commitment to ongoing savings was crystal clear in the election campaign.”
Mr Pitt said comments by the Energy Supply Association suggested a large part of the proposed price rise was due to a catch-up to compensate suppliers for the tariff freeze imposed last year by the LNP government.
“This was confirmed by the QCA in its report,” he said.
“So in effect the LNP has so far delivered nothing and consumers have so far saved nothing, let alone $120 a year.
“Mr Nicholls cannot blame the proposed massive rise on the impact of emissions pricing because that price was already factored into bills from July last year and has not changed.”
Mr Pitt said the Premier’s promise of ongoing savings of $120 a year on power bills could not have been clearer.
“Despite fiddling with its policy in November 2011, the minimum saving the LNP promised was always to be an ongoing $120 a year,” he said.
In January 2012 2011 the LNP released a statement that said it would “….act to address Queensland’s rising household energy bills and immediately freeze the standard domestic tariff (Tariff 11) providing savings of around $120 a year on power bills compared with Labor…”
“The $120 cut was promised as a bare-minimum, ongoing, annual saving. There was no mention of it being a one-off,” Mr Pitt said.
“The LNP’s promise on power prices now joins other broken promises on the cost of living.
“It promised to freeze car rego but once in office argued its election promise did not cover CTP costs, despite never previously making that distinction.
“The LNP promised all Queensland households ongoing annual savings of $80 on water bills but once in office limited the promise to households in South East Queensland and in January the Premier suddenly said the $80 saving was a ‘one-off rebate’.
“In just 11 months in office the LNP has broken all of its key promises to reduce the cost of living for Queensland households,” Mr Pitt said.