Cost-of-living relief could be on the way, with the federal government reportedly planning to include its promised power-bill relief in the May budget.
According to the Australian Financial Review, the power-price relief will be rebadged as a “cost-of-living centrepiece” in the budget, after the power-bill relief rollout was pushed past April.
The budget is also expected to include a package to subsidise low-income households to switch from gas to electric appliances. This was promised to the Greens in return for their support for the gas and coal price caps.
The Labor Environment Action Network estimated there were 12 million gas appliances that would need to be replaced by electric ones.
What power relief has been promised?
Federal, state and territory governments will provide up to $3 billion for “targeted and temporary” relief on power bills for low- and middle-income households and small businesses.
Instead of cash handouts, the power relief will be provided as a credit directly on eligible Aussies’ power bills. This is designed to avoid increasing inflation.
It will be given to Aussies receiving income support, such as those on JobSeeker, pensioners and Commonwealth Seniors Health Card holders, Family Tax Benefit A and B recipients and small business customers.
According to the government, the plan will provide hundreds of dollars in bill relief to eligible Aussies and small businesses.
Amounts and details will vary between states and territories, depending on their electricity prices and systems.
“It will not be the same plan in each state and territory, given each of them have different systems,” Prime Minister Anthony Albanese said in December.
“Part of the complexity of what we have been dealing with is the fact that we have eight different systems around the country.”