La­bor gives power to coun­try Vic­to­ri­ans

Alpine Observer - - News -

NORTH East fam­i­lies have the chance to re­duce their power costs un­der the State Govern­ment’s $1.34 bil­lion So­lar Homes pro­gram.

The ini­tia­tive in­cludes half price so­lar pan­els, $1000 off the cost of so­lar hot wa­ter, and half price so­lar bat­ter­ies for house­holds that al­ready have so­lar pan­els.

Vic­to­ri­ans can now in­stall a so­lar panel sys­tem and get half of the cost back via a 50 per cent re­bate.

This will be ex­panded to in­clude the in­ter­est-free loan from July next year, un­der a re-elected La­bor Govern­ment.

The 50 per cent re­bate on so­lar panel sys­tems will be avail­able to Vic­to­ri­ans with a house­hold in­come of up to $180,000 who live in their own home val­ued at up to $3 mil­lion, mean­ing al­most nine out of 10 Vic­to­ri­ans who own their own house are el­i­gi­ble.

With not all homes able to have so­lar pan­els in­stalled the State Govern­ment is pro­vid­ing a $1,000 re­bate on so­lar hot wa­ter sys­tems as part of the pro­gram.

The $1,000 re­bate is avail­able to up to 6,000 house­holds now and will be ex­panded to 60,000 house­holds across Victoria from July next year, un­der a re­elected An­drews La­bor Govern­ment.

As well, a re-elected An­drews La­bor Govern­ment will pro­vide half price so­lar bat­ter­ies for 10,000 house­holds.

Un­der the scheme, home­own­ers can get a 50 per cent re­bate for in­stal­la­tion of a bat­tery stor­age unit, capped at $4,838 in the first year and ta­per­ing down to $3,714 by 2026 as the price of bat­ter­ies comes down.

Ja­clyn Symes (MLC, Norther Victoria) said North East Vic­to­ri­ans were in the prime po­si­tion to take ad­van­tage of the many pro­gram.

“The $40 mil­lion pro­gram is part of La­bor’s mas­sive new So­lar Homes ini­tia­tive, which is putting power back into the hands of coun­try Vic­to­ri­ans, cut­ting elec­tric­ity bills with ei­ther so­lar pan­els, so­lar hot wa­ter or so­lar bat­ter­ies for 720,000 homes over the next 10 years,” Ms Symes said.

“This is a game changer for North East fam­i­lies fed up with big cor­po­ra­tions that have been price goug­ing and rip­ping con­sumers off ever since Jeff Ken­nett and the Lib­er­als and Na­tion­als pri­va­tised our elec­tric­ity.

“La­bor is also in­vest­ing heav­ily in larger scale so­lar projects that will fur­ther drive down en­ergy costs for fam­i­lies and cre­ate jobs in coun­try Victoria.

“This is also about mod­ernising our elec­tric­ity grid to help us tran­si­tion to a more af­ford­able, re­li­able and clean en­ergy sys­tem.”

The State Govern­ment has also re­cently an­nounced $780,000 to­wards lo­cal mi­cro­grids in Euroa and Mi­lawa.

In Mi­lawa, La­bor has pro­vided a $100,000 grant to the Ru­ral City of Wangaratta for its Mi­lawa Mi­cro-Grid Com­mu­nity Busi­ness Case project.

The project will de­velop a busi­ness case for a mi­cro grid model for the town that will com­prise of so­lar en­ergy, en­ergy stor­age and hy­dro­gen fuel cell tech­nol­ogy.

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