Facts on electricity privatisation
What’s clear is that the proposed privatisation of Western Power is all about fixing the WA Government’s budget problem, a problem of the government’s own making.
Instead of focusing on managing this large public asset well, the government has sought a short-term fix, in doing so creating a long-term problem for us all.
If Western Power is privatised, control is lost – what happens when something goes wrong? The public ends up picking up the mess.
It's happen over east so we have quite a few facts about electricity privatisation. Here are some of them.
#1. Increased prices
Almost by instinct, most of us get that privatising our electricity will mean we pay more. And it does. However, are some important details behind that which is worth thinking about. Competition policy began to rollout from the mid-1990’s and this included the establishment of the National Electricity Market, which, for important reasons, didn't fully extend to WA. Read more here...
#2. Our economy, jobs and apprenticeships
Of course the place gets a spruce up before auction, any home buyer and seller knows that. So, no surprises that just before selling public electricity, governments dismiss employees to make the cost side of the books look more profitable to a potential buyer. Maybe you’d be surprised to know about some other important job loss (and some growth) data resulting from privatisation. Read more here...
#3. Maintenance, safety and reliability
Private companies have a profit-incentive to reduce immediate costs, even if there are costs on the long run. This was most tragically highlighted through Victoria’s Black Saturday bushfires, which left 150 people dead, found that faulty privatised power lines were responsible for causing five of the most devastating blazes. Read more here...
#4. Doesn't make financial sense
Research by Orion Consulting Services of the 2016 WA Budget estimated that Western Power contributes over $400 million a year in revenue. Those funds to the WA Government go towards services such as local schools, hospitals and roads. Read more here...
The news that test samples of installed roof panels in the beleaguered Perth Children's Hospital have come back positive for asbestos raises many issues. Before everything else, the health of workers is paramount. We can only imagine their anxiety living with the fear of possibly contracting an asbestos-related disease in the future. According to Shadow Health Minister, Roger Cook, the PCH is effectively a contaminated site.
But there are other concerns.Read more
If the State Government was a student sitting for their final exams, we'd have pretty grave concerns about their progress, particularly in the areas of math, accounting and social sciences. The State Government is failing in areas that are affecting the lives of West Australians and do not seem to have a plan for moving forward.
While the following is written somewhat tongue-in-cheek [we know our teachers would never write comments like these], the underlying concern is that Colin Barnett and his ministers can and must do better for the State, but won't.Read more
The West has accused some of the 54,000 people waiting for a medical appointment of resorting to lying to get on multiple wait-lists ("Patients lie to jump surgery queue", 29 June 2015). The blaming continues with accusations of using false addresses to get duplicate referrals as well as "hospital shopping".
Our question is: Why is there a need to resort to such desperate measures?Read more
Recent stories in the media regarding the Barnett government's plans for Royal Perth Hospital are throwing up a few all-too-familiar red flags. With an election promise to retain and redevelop RPH but with no money to do it, it seems the Premier is turning to his familiar strategy of privatisation to plug the many holes in his rhetoric - and budget.Read more
Did you see this report in The West that public schools will lose even more in funding under the Orwellian "Workforce renewal policy"?
It is getting pretty hard to work out, in real terms, how much is being lost in school funding.Read more
Save Our Services and UnionsWA today commented on the release of the 2015 WA state budget including wide-ranging job and services cuts, huge increases in fees and charges and the sale of public assets.
Isn't giving our kids a good education the most important thing?
There's been a lot in the media lately about schools, cuts to funding, the coming WA Budget.
First, check out what Carly has to say. It's a reality check.