Labor’s latest move a shocker for Queenslanders

28 Apr 2015 9:00 AMJohn-Paul Langbroek

Queensland families have been denied cheaper electricity prices under a Labor Government that doesn’t know what it’s doing.

Deputy Opposition Leader John-Paul Langbroek said today’s announcement to defer power price deregulation for 12 months by Treasurer Curtis Pitt was the strongest indication yet that the Palaszczuk Government was just making it up on the run.

“With just weeks until this plan was due to be rolled out the Labor Government has pulled the pin,” Mr Langbroek said.

“By abandoning power price deregulation, Labor has abandoned the Queenslanders that are crying out for cost of living relief.”

Mr Langbroek said under the LNP Government’s plan, households would have been in a better bargaining position to shop around for cheaper prices, potentially saving them hundreds of dollars.

“Now that Labor has deferred our landmark policy because of yet another review, energy retailers will not expand into the market,” he said.

“This is bad news for competition, bad news for business and bad news for jobs.

“The decision to defer the LNP Government’s plan to deregulate retail electricity prices, is nothing more than an excuse to avoid any decision making.

“Queensland is the only state not to move to de-regulated pricing.

“If the Palaszczuk Government continues to stall on making decisions they will stall Queensland’s economy, pure and simple.”

Mr Langbroek said every time Labor fiddled with the power industry, electricity costs skyrocketed.

“We saw it under Beattie and Bligh and now Annastacia Palaszczuk has taken out the trifecta - but sadly there are no winners in this scenario,” he said.

 

FAST FACTS

  • A report by the Australian Energy Market Commission (AEMC) reinforced a study done by the St Vincent de Paul Society that found consumers could save up to $475 a year by shopping around.
  • The LNP Government removed prescriptive reliability standards for electricity distributors, which will save Queenslanders more than $2 billion between 2015 and 2030.
  • The LNP’s reforms to the Solar Bonus Scheme will save about $110 million between 2014 and 2020.
  • Thanks to the LNP, all Queensland electricity users will benefit from stronger consumer protections from 1 July 2015.
  • The LNP signed up to the National Electricity Customer Framework (NECF) to:
    • improve consumer protections, especially for those experiencing financial difficulty and hardship;
    • ensure all eligible older Queenslanders living in retirement villages and caravan parks have better access to concessions and rebates, including the pensioner electricity rebate of more than $320/year;
    • reduce red tape by adopting nationally harmonised laws for customer protection;
    • ensure reticulated natural gas users have similar protections to electricity users; and
    • require retailers to inform customers in advance of any price changes and also offer retail products without exit fees.

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