The Department of Communities has announced it has a plan to transfer responsibility for power and water services in remote Aboriginal communities from the Department to the licensed specialists, Water Corporation and Horizon Power.
Under the transfer, which has already begun, 141 remote communities currently serviced by the Department will transition to improved and more reliable power and water services, enhancing wellbeing for the 12,000 residents or so.
In a statement, the Department said the transfer included an initial $200 million allocated for upgrades and continued improvements to power and water infrastructure and improvements to water quality.
“Delivered through collaboration between the Water Corporation and Horizon Power, the upgrades, which will be phased in, will bring services into line with comparable communities in WA,” the Department said.
“The outcomes of the transfer will advance the commitment to the National Agreement on Closing the Gap, as well as address elements of the Aboriginal Empowerment Strategy and the State Infrastructure Strategy.”
Minister for Housing, John Carey said $350 million from the Remote Communities Fund would support the improvement in water and power as well as upgrading housing in remote Aboriginal communities.
“Reliable essential services are important for the wellbeing of individuals, families and communities and are the foundation for healthy and sustainable communities,” Mr Carey said.
“Horizon Power and the Water Corporation are specialist and licensed utilities that are expertly placed to manage power and water services.”