The promise was made at Barry O’Farrell’s campaign launch in Penrith on February 20, 2011 (see attached)*.
Opposition Leader John Robertson said that based on the funding allocation in this week’s budget, barely a quarter of the 540,000 families eligible for the rebate would receive it in 2013-14.
· The Government has budgeted $19 million for the rebate scheme in 2013/14;
· This falls well short of the $67.5 million needed to benefit all 540,000 eligible families in receipt of Commonwealth Family Tax Benefit A and B;
· The rebate is $125 this year, before rising to $150 in 2014/15; and
· Electricity bills have increased an average 42.6 per cent since the O’Farrell Government came to office.
“Opening that electricity bill is a huge anxiety for many households – and 388,000 families now know they won’t receive any help from Barry O’Farrell,” Mr Robertson said today.
“This was the central promise that Mr O’Farrell announced at his election launch – and it’s now clear he had no intention to deliver it in full.
“The Premier has deliberately underfunded his own iconic election promise.
“Publicity for the scheme has been virtually non-existent and the dishonesty of that election promise from Mr O’Farrell stands bare for all to see.”
Shadow Minister for Energy Ron Hoenig said: “Barry O’Farrell should be roasted for breaking this promise. Families were promised a rebate and they’re now having to jump through hoops to get it, if they’re even lucky enough.
“The Government couldn’t have mismanaged this more if it tried.”
*Front page media coverage of Barry O’Farrell’s 2011 election launch promise attached.
ELECTRICITY PRICE RISES UNDER O’FARRELL
Energy Australia (Sydney/Hunter)
Origin/Endeavour Energy (Sydney/Illawarra)
Origin/Essential Energy (Country NSW)