No more free water for the rich

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No more free water for the rich

TMG Digital | 2017-03-30 15:08:41.0

Image by: Gallo Images/ Thinkstock

Wealthy Johannesburg residents could soon pay for every drop of water they use if the municipality has its way.

The City of Joburg has proposed only allocating a basic free water supply to those who are considered extremely poor.

Council discussed the proposal on Thursday in its meeting on tariffs for the 2017/18 financial year.

The proposal will be debated further and receive public comments

In his statement prepared for council‚ executive mayor Herman Mashaba said: “Given the scarcity of water in Johannesburg‚ the huge inequality in our city‚ and the massive infrastructure and service delivery backlog we believe it is in the best interests of our residents to follow this national trend.”

“Therefore‚ from the 2017/18 financial year‚ only indigent households registered on the City’s Expanded Social Package Programme will receive a free basic water allocation of between 10kl and 15kl per month‚ depending on their score on the prevailing COJ Poverty Index.

“Domestic users who do not qualify as indigents will see a modest increase of R42.84 per month to their water bill as a result of this change‚” Mashaba said.

If the proposed move is adopted after public consultation‚ the city expects to generate an estimated R320 million more in revenue on an annual basis.

In its proposal the city wants to increase the water and sanitation tariff by 12.2%‚ electricity by 2.28%‚ refuse removal by 6.1% and property rates 6.2%.

These increases are for the 2017/18 financial and are being released for public consultation.

“It must be stated from the outset that we have done everything in our power to keep the tariff increases at bare minimum while ensuring we maintain the city’s financial sustainability‚” Mashaba said.

Cape Town mayor Patricia De Lille presented her tariff proposals on Wednesday.

She said rates would go up by 5%‚ electricity by 3‚34%‚ refuse collection by 6‚51% and water by 17‚25%.

– TMG Digital



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