Media statement - Community Wastewater Management System (CWMS)

Published on 19 July 2019

Important background

Via the link below you can find detailed information on our CWMS system and an explanation of how pricing is set.

On that page, you’ll also find specific information relating to an external review of customer pricing by the Essential Services Commission of South Australia (ESCOSA).

ESCOSA is the state government body that oversees our licensing for CWMS services.

There is also a link to ESCOSA’s findings in full.


Statement from Mark Dowd, CEO 

In August 2018, ESCOSA found the council’s operating revenue, per-customer costs and annual CWMS charges were not excessively high when assessed against other comparable councils.

ESCOSA also found that the Council is satisfying the National Water Initiative Pricing Principle, allowing retailers to average charges across multiple networks and impose a uniform charge for all CWMS users.

This is known as postage stamp pricing – one price for all customers.

Council does this because all CWMS customers are considered to benefit from increased numbers of households accessing the CWMS and therefore contribute equally to scheme’s ongoing operation.

All four other councils which ESCOSA benchmarked the City of Onkaparinga against - Adelaide Hills, Berri Barmera, Mt Barker and Barossa - also currently implement a postage stamp pricing approach for their respective CWMS schemes.