Moree Plains Shire ratepayers who are running out of drinking water will be given a Christmas gift to make life a little easier heading into the festive season.
At Thursday's council meeting, Moree Plains Shire councillors unanimously approved a Christmas bonus for ratepayers facing a diminishing domestic water supply.
The decision means eligible ratepayers will have access to an allocation of up to a maximum volume of 25,000 litres of potable water per property, free of charge.
The water will be made available for collection by the eligible ratepayer (or their nominated agent) from Council's Bulk Water Filling Station located at its Tycannah Street Works Depot.
Mayor Katrina Humphries prompted the initiative through a Notice of Motion at Thursday's council meeting.
"We are so blessed to have our wonderful artesian water," she said.
"It is something that many in our region would love to have as their own. It allows council to be in a position to make available this water to those in our shire who aren't on our water schemes or who are now living with level four water restrictions.
"For many households across the shire, Christmas may be a little less festive than usual so this is something council can give back to our ratepayers and for those that need it, we trust it eases some of their burdens at this time of the year."
To be eligible, a ratepayer:
- Must have a property for which rates are paid in the Moree Plains Shire. You will need to provide your rates assessment number.
- That property must be located in an area of the Moree Plains Shire where either water restrictions have been imposed by council (ie. Boggabilla, Mungindi or Weemelah) or where the property is not connected to any potable water supply scheme operated by council.
- That property will be provided with access to a collection of bulk water from the Tycannah Street Works Depot up to a maximum volume of 25,000 litres.
- The ratepayer will be required to provide a declaration confirming that the water will be used for domestic purposes only.
Eligible ratepayers will need to complete the Christmas Free Bulk Water Declaration which can be found on council's website. This form should be completed and emailed to CustomerService@mpsc.nsw.gov.au. Hard copy forms can be collected and submitted at either of council's customer service centres in Moree and Mungindi.
Upon establishing eligibility, a ratepayer will be allocated a collection time for supply of the water from the Tycannah Street Works Depot. This scheduling will be allocated on a first-come first-served basis and is necessary because the fill time from the Bulk Water Station for volumes up to 25,000 litres may take up to 30 minutes.
This initiative will be available up until December 24, with council foreshadowing that any similar initiative in the New Year will be discussed at its first council meeting of 2020.
For the avoidance of doubt, Moree town residents supplied water through the Moree potable water supply scheme are not eligible for this initiative. Such residents received water rebates earlier this year and are not presently on water restrictions.
For those residents not eligible, bulk water is still available for purchase from the Tycannah Street Works Depot.
As set out in council's fees and charges for the 2019-2020 financial year, bulk water is available for purchase directly from council at a cost of $3 per 1,000 litres. This cost is exclusive of any cartage costs which might be incurred in transporting the bulk water.
For more information, contact council's customer service centre on (02) 6757 3222.