Statement regarding Water Smart Package outcomes

Date published: 19 September 2019

Townsville City Council is proud of the partnerships formed with local businesses to deliver the Water Smart Package.

The Water Smart Package is one of Council’s most popular campaigns and is proving to become the most successful water saving rebate program in Australia.

The community has embraced all of the packages on offer with over 85% of the program already allocated – equating to over 18,500 households.

The Water Smart Package has attracted overwhelming interest from the community with nearly 700,000 website visits to date.

For the first time ever, the scheme has allowed community members eligible for social support services the option to receive up to $500 worth of goods and services without being out of pocket. We are meeting our target in this area and already have over 5,000 households registered.

The success is also due to the 10 local businesses that have partnered with Council to deliver the Water Smart Package, which has created over 100 direct and indirect jobs for our locals and is having positive flow-on effects into dozens of other businesses who are indirectly benefiting.

The Water Smart Package was always designed with a community education element in mind and we recognise that behavioural change is the toughest component of this.

AEC was engaged to deliver not only the marketing of the Water Smart Package, but also to drive the community education and awareness campaign.

The market research undertaken as part of the campaigns development clearly showed that the community needed more information on how to become water wise.

The project is solely funded by $10 million from the Queensland Government and we welcome any review by the Queensland Audit Office.

All milestones and deliverables are reported monthly to the State through progress reports including monthly financial reporting. Council has submitted 11 monthly reports to the satisfaction of the State. In addition, the Program Director – Water Security provides bi-monthly updates to Council on the 3-point water security solution and will provide her 6th presentation to the Full Council meeting on 24 September 2019.

Council updates its online register of contracts in accordance with the local government legislation every month – this includes details of new contracts awarded for a value of $200,000 or more and are published on Council’s website shortly after the contract has been entered into.

Contracts are then managed by Council officers in accordance with applicable statutory requirements and any applicable government grant acquittal requirements.

The Queensland Government has contributed $225 million to improve water security in Townsville.

The 3-point water security solution includes:

  • The new 1.8m-diameter pipeline
  • A Recycled Water Re-use Scheme for public greenspaces and industrial use
  • The Water Smart Package