Big job cuts as Aurora-Transend merge in July

Almost 170 jobs are to be shed in the merger of Tasmania's new energy company TasNetworks.

TasNetworks has been formed by merging the distribution arm of Aurora Energy and Transend, both state-owned organisations.

The merger is part of the state's energy reforms and was supported by Labor, Liberals and the Greens, with a goal of driving down power prices.

But Aurora CEO Peter Davis says it is hard to say how much of an impact the savings will have.

"That's a tricky question...it actually depends on what the regulator allows through in the pricing determination," he said.

The jobs shedding is expected to save the company between $8-$10 million a year.

TasNetworks says 777 Aurora and Transend employees will be transferred directly to the new company.

Vacancies have been advertised today for a further 211 jobs.

TasNetworks' spokeswoman Justine McDermott says the remaining positions will be filled from a pool of 275 Aurora and Transend staff.

"Most of the roles in the candidate pool for permanent roles are duplicate rolls for management and support services," she said.

"I've seen in my inbox that I've already got applications coming in, so that is exciting.

"We're active and we're going to go as fast as the recruitment process enables us and we have a commitment to fill them by the end of June."

CEO Lance Balcombe says permanent employees will have priority in filling the vacancies.

Redundancies will be offered to permanent employees who are not transferred.

"While we wish to retain our talented people in the business, we are giving eligible employees this option which, if accepted, may be the preferred course for some permanent employees who are not transferred," he said.

"Employees of both organisations are eligible for extensive support to find employment elsewhere."

He says the number of employees seeking redundancies will not be known for several weeks.

The Communications Electrical and Plumbing Union secretary, Trevor Gauld, says he is happy most of his workers affected by the merger have their jobs secured in the new company.

But he says the companies told workers the unions had been consulted about yesterday's announcements, which was not the case.

"We're concerned that they are misrepresenting the consultation process," he said.

"They certainly haven't been engaging with the unions about what's going on, even though they are telling their employees they have.

"It's just misleading, it's not correct."

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