For all customers, the fixed charge portion of Eastland Network’s line charges has increased due to the change in regulations. To balance this, the variable charge portion has been reduced.
This means that, overall, Eastland Network’s charges to electricity retailers for standard domestic users and commercial customers will reduce. Charges to retailers for low domestic users will increase slightly. Your retailer will manage these movements in cost and let you know if there is any change to your bill.
“Eastland Network is the regional lines company for Gisborne, Wairoa and the East Coast,” says general manager Jarred Moroney.
“We have around 20,300 domestic customers and 5,500 non-domestic customers spread across 12,000 square kilometres.
“With our new pricing from 1 April 2022, the cost to retailers for two thirds of our domestic customers – that’s around 13,300 people – will, on average, increase by $1.70 per customer a month.
“The remainder, who are on the domestic standard tariff, will be a cost reduction to retailers, on average, of $2.74 per customer a month.
“Eastland Network’s cost to retailers for commercial and industrial customers will reduce by an overall average of 9%.”
The government is phasing out low fixed electricity pricing plans across New Zealand, starting from 1 April 2022. The change was a key recommendation of a 2019 independent panel review of electricity prices.
The review found low fixed charge regulations were poorly targeted and resulted in a number of unintended consequences, such as shifting costs to households with low incomes and high electricity use.
The change means that the electricity sector can implement fairer pricing plans for distributing electricity, which will ultimately help networks manage the load more efficiently during peak times.
Prices are strictly regulated and must comply with the Commerce Commission’s Default Price-Quality Path Determination requirements. On average, Eastland Network’s line charges make up around 40 percent of the total cost on an electricity bill, although this does vary depending on different retailer offers.
Lines charges are a combination of transmission charges, which are passed on from Transpower, and distribution charges.
Eastland Network bills these line charges directly to energy retailers, and they incorporate them into each customer’s power bill. The remaining costs are determined by the retailers.
With Eastland Network’s Time of Use tariff, residential consumers have the ability to reduce their electricity bill by shifting some of their power use from peak to off-peak times.
Off-peak times are Monday to Friday 9pm to 7am, 11am to 5pm, and weekends. For example, turn on your washing machine and dishwasher during those off-peak times, and you’ll be paying a lower price for your power.
To take advantage of the Time of Use tariff, you need to have a communicating smart meter, and choose a suitable plan from your retailer.
There are more than 20 electricity retailers you can choose from in Tairāwhiti. Research shows that people who switch regularly can save more. Switching retailers is straightforward. To find out the best plan for you, visit this free and independent website: powerswitch.org.nz