Power increases caused by Labor 'booby trapping' reforms
UPDATE: 1.35PM: IF YOU are looking for someone to blame for an increase on your power bills, Energy Minister Mark McArdle said Labor at both a state and federal level had "booby trapped" possible savings.
After Queensland's competition watchdog revealed the average electricity bill would go up by $191 for the next 12 months, the Sunshine Coast MP said the blame lay with Labor.
Mr McArdle said data from the Queensland Competition Authority showed removing the carbon tax would save the average household about $170 in the 2014-15 financial year.
"Getting rid of Labor's carbon tax is the quickest and easiest way to reduce electricity bills in Queensland," he said.
"The QCA said two of the main factors pushing up prices are the Solar Bonus Scheme and network changes.
"We are cutting the cost of poles and wires, introducing more competition with customer protections and reforming solar bonus schemes.
"Our reforms to the Solar Bonus Scheme will save Queenslanders $110 million."
"Whether by political design -or incompetence - past and present Labor MPs booby-trapped Queensland's path to more affordable electricity prices.
QUEENSLAND TO PAY MORE FOR POWER
POWER prices across the state will go up by $191 or by $13.6% after the state's competition watchdog released its latest electricity decision.
Business owners will cop an increase of 11.5% or about $219.
The increase covers the 2014-15 financial year, in place from July 1.
The Queensland Competition Authority has created two price lists for the coming 12 months, with the increase to be revised if the Federal Government manages to dump the carbon tax.
QCA chairman Malcolm Roberts said costs had to go up to keep up with "rising industry costs".
"The QCA regrets that price increases are necessary," he said.
"Any increase in electricity prices is unwelcome.
"Nevertheless, if industry costs are rising, prices must follow to ensure reliable electricity supply."
The final amount is one dollar below what the QCA estimated in December.
EARLIER: Opposition attacks expected power price gouge
QUEENSLANDERS will today find out how much extra they are going to pay on their power bills each year.
Just days before the LNP Government releases its final state budget for this term, the Queensland Competition Authority will publish its final decision on increasing the cost of electricity.
The QCA is expected to stick closely to its draft decision made in December last year that put the increase by $192 per year for the average user, from $1407 to $1599.
The numbers assumed Australia would keep its carbon tax.
If abolished, electricity bills would rise $76 a year, to $1483.
The Queensland Opposition is already on the attack over the expected increase, pointing to a promise by the LNP before its election to reduce the cost-of-living for Queenslanders.
Shadow treasurer Curtis Pitt told ABC Radio the Premier was yet to deliver the $120 per year in savings he promised.
Mr Pitt said it was wrong of the government to blame the carbon tax for the increases because the Premier knew there would always be a carbon tax and it should have been included when numbers were crunched.
He said the carbon tax contributed just 3% to electricity bills, although the QCA estimates this to be closer to 8%.
Energy Minister Mark McArdle said he was yet to see the QCA's decision, but blamed any increases on the former Labor government.
He said even discounting the impact of the carbon tax, the Bligh Government's introduction of a 44c solar feed-in tariff was a $3 billion cost to be borne by Queenslanders until 2028.
Mr McArdle said the government was already working to stop the "gold plating" of power infrastructure that led to higher prices.
The QCA is expected to reveal its decision by 1.30pm today.