Supporting customers with financial hardship

Wednesday 24 April, 2024

Goulburn-Murray Water (GMW) is encouraging customers to be proactive in managing any outstanding bills and reminding them of supports available if they are experiencing financial hardships.

The water corporation has a detailed procedure for recovering debt that seeks to ensure fairness and support those experiencing financial hardships.

GMW Business and Finance general manager Michael Gomez said GMW was eager to work with customers in debt to find solutions.

“We know the past few years have been challenging for a lot of people, and we’re eager to help customers manage their debt levels where possible,” he said.

“We have various options available to people experiencing financial hardships, such as instalment options and customised hardship plans, which we encourage people to utilise if necessary.”

Mr Gomez encouraged customers experiencing financial hardship to contact GMW as soon as possible for support.

The water corporation has recently partnered with debt collection agency CollectAU to work with customers in debt and determine next steps.

Mr Gomez said debt was something that impacted all customers.

“Debt recovery is a crucial part of keeping business sustainable,” he said.

“We want to help those in debt for their own benefit but also to ensure ongoing debts are not driving up our revenue requirements, which subsequently impacts our other customers.

“Therefore, partnering with CollectAU and offering our customers different avenues to manage debt helps ensure fairness for our customers.”

Customers are sent invoices and contacted through reminder notices, phone calls, letters, emails and SMS.  

If the customer is found to be actively uncooperative when trying to settle outstanding balances, GMW can suspend their supply and take further action.

“Our effective debt management has been an important factor in the positive price outcomes our customers have experienced in recent years,” Mr Gomez said.

“In 2020/21, we reduced prices by an average of 10 per cent, and in the years since then, our prices have risen at levels below Consumer Price Index (CPI).

“Furthermore, our draft Price Submission for the next four years sees a slight decrease to the average customer bills before CPI, which is also good news for customers.”

To learn more about GMW’s Debt Management and Hardship procedures, people can visit the GMW website:

You can also phone GMW’s Revenue Team on 1800 013 357 for more information and to set up a payment plan.