The New South Wales government is offering a $250 bonus to households who check if their energy provider is giving them the best deal on their power bills, in a major pledge ahead of next month’s state election.
Families and individuals who use the Energy Made Easy website to check if their energy company’s rate is competitive will receive a one-off $250 payment they can use towards their energy bills, the NSW Government said in a media release on Sunday.
It said families could save up to $400 if they switched providers through the government comparison website.
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Premier Dominic Perrottet said the bonus was much needed, as many Australians have been under pressure from an increase in the cost of living.
“We know households are feeling the pinch right now and that’s why we will provide immediate bill relief as well as help families get a better energy deal,” Mr Perrottet said.
The one-off payment through the Service NSW website will be available from July and can be used whether you choose to change energy providers, or stay put.
The government said switching providers between now and 1 July won’t prevent households from being eligible for the $250 if they search again when the program launches.
It’s expected about two million energy users would take up the offer, costing the government about $500 million.
Federal Treasurer Jim Chalmers said at the beginning of 2023 the cost of electricity will likely fall next financial year based on December 2022 data from the ASX.
The Commonwealth government has already set a cap on power prices and offered a rebate to low and middle-income customers as part of an energy relief package.
NSW Labor Leader Chris Minns called the incentive a “cash splash” which would be followed by a year of steadily increasing power bills.
“What the government hasn’t told you is that it’s a one-off payment,” Mr Minns said.
“The following 12 months, electricity prices are expected to jump by an additional 30 per cent.
“I think many taxpayers in NSW will be asking, ‘Why did you sell off the power stations in the first place?
“This is an admission that the government’s reckless privatisation agenda has smashed household budgets.”
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