Guiding consumers since 2009

No more free water for home owners

By Jessica Anne Wood

Currently up for public comment is the proposal that houses valued at more than R400 000 will no longer receive the first six kilolitres (kl) of water free per month.

Mayoral committee member for finance, councillor Johan van der Merwe, explained that the proposal is to limit the provision of free water to only those who are classified as indigent, one of the qualifying criteria is that the resident reside in a property valued at less than R400 000. This policy is contained in the draft 2017/18 budget.

Van der Merwe clarified that there will be no adjustment to the current proposal and emphasised that all households classified as indigent will continue to receive 6kl of water free each month, as well as other related indigent benefits.

“The City needs to ensure the long-term sustainability of the water and sanitation service. The current approach where high-income, low consumption users are not paying for water is no longer sustainable, specifically when considering the permanent changes consumers are effecting as a result of the drought. These measures are also in line with National Treasury circulars for municipalities to consider the affordability of providing free basic services to all households,” revealed van der Merwe.

The water tariffs

The draft 2017/18 budget proposes implementing a fee of R4.56 per kl for the first 6kl to non-indigent households. The proposed water tariffs for the City of Cape Town are as follows:

Domestic – non-indigent:

Quantity of water

Cost per kl for 2016/17 (Incl. VAT)

Cost per kl for 2017/18 (Incl. VAT)

Step  1 (0 < 6kl)

R0

R4.56

Step 2 (> 6 < 10.5kl)

R14.86

R17.75

Step 3 (> 10.5 < 20kl)

R17.41

R20.77

Step 4 (> 20 < 35kl)

R25.80

R30.76

Step 5 (> 35 < 50 kl)

R31.86

R38

Step 6 (>50kl)

R42.03

R50.12

Source: City of Cape Town draft 2017/18 budget

Domestic –indigent:

Quantity of water

Cost per kl for 2016/17 (Incl. VAT)

Cost per kl for 2017/18 (Incl. VAT)

Step  1 (0 < 6kl)

R0

R0

Step 2 (> 6 < 10.5kl)

R14.86

R17.75

Step 3 (> 10.5 < 20kl)

R17.41

R20.77

Step 4 (> 20 < 35kl)

R25.80

R30.76

Step 5 (> 35 < 50 kl)

R31.86

R38

Step 6 (>50kl)

R42.03

R50.12

Source: City of Cape Town draft 2017/18 budget

Van der Merwe added: “The City needs to continue our aggressive capital programmes to ensure water security, implementation of augmentation schemes, extensions to wastewater treatment plants, appropriate capacity levels, and asset replacements programmes to ensure proper asset management. The severity of the drought also necessitates the acceleration of our repairs and maintenance programme as well as staffing strategy to ensure that service delivery and responsiveness expectations are being met to ensure water losses are minimised.”

No clear date has been determined for the implementation of the proposed water tariff increase.

 Further reading:

 

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