Ombudsman hosts Bring Your Bills Day to Coffs Harbour

Energy and Water Ombudsman NSW Janine Young.

RESIDENTS who are worried about the cost and payment of their energy or water bills will have the opportunity to talk directly to the NSW Energy and Water Ombudsman (EWON) at an event in Coffs Harbour in April.

A ‘Bring Your Bills Day’ will be held especially for residents and small business operators at Coffs Harbour’s Cavanbah Centre on Wednesday 10 April from 10am-5pm.

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These events are being held to assist locals with their energy and water bills and provide information on rebates and concessions for customers concerned about rising energy prices.

In 2022/2023, there was a 32 percent increase in complaints to EWON from customers in the Coffs Harbour – Grafton region, and an eighteen percent increase from Mid North Coast customers.

On average, 65 percent of all complaints to EWON from customers in these regions were about billing, including high or estimated bills or problems with rebates or concessions.

“Concerns and complaints about high bills and affordability issues including debt and disconnection will be most prevalent,” NSW Energy and Water Ombudsman Janine Young told News Of The Area.

“Estimated bills, problems with contracts and supply issues are also likely to be raised.

“We’ll be here to offer advice and assistance about managing high bills, saving energy and dealing with energy providers.

“We’ll listen to concerns, review bills and work to resolve issues on the spot.

“We want people to walk away with a better understanding of their energy bills and with knowledge about the range of affordability assistance available to them,” she said.

Janine recognised the Mid North Coast is regularly subject to extreme weather conditions including flooding, and particularly over the past twelve months, cost-of-living pressures and increased energy prices.

“We’re bringing our staff directly to locals, to offer advice about managing bills, saving energy and dealing with providers.

“We’re there to confidentially listen to people’s concerns, review bills and work with locals to resolve any issues they may have – on the spot,” she said.

Each event will provide a ‘one-stop-shop’ for advice, support and information.

Janine will be joined by a range of community and government agencies, and energy retailers who can provide direct assistance to their customers with their energy bills.

There will also be support and advice for seniors and carers including about legal and financial issues, tenancy rights and community and social services.

Customers are encouraged to bring along current and past energy bills, letters from retailers, Centrelink Health Cards, and any other concession cards.

The Energy and Water Ombudsman is a free dispute resolution service that assists customers when they can’t resolve issues with their energy or water provider.


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