Greater Hume Shire asked to prepare business case for Albury to take over Jindera, Burrumbuttock, Brocklesby and Gerogery

ALBURY Council has turned the pressure back on Greater Hume Shire to crunch a business case and implementation plan for Albury to take over management of supplying water to Jindera and other small towns.

Albury presently supplies potable water to 1400 connections in Jindera, Burrumbuttock, Brocklesby and Gerogery under an agreement dating back to 1984.

Greater Hume is responsible for distribution and billing of customers who presently pay more than Albury households.

Among the initial findings contained in a report to Albury Council last month was the likelihood of a “significant reduction” in the average water bill for the villages water supply scheme customers.

But there was a warning the loss of the water supply function by Greater Hume could impact on its “capacity from a financial and resource perspective”.

“The net financial impact on the operating result for Albury Council’s water fund would be minor,” engineering department staff member Greg Whorlow said.

“This is mainly due to the number of connections in the villages water supply scheme equating to approximately five per cent of the total number of existing Albury Council connections.”

Greater Hume has indicated it will only proceed with the transfer of the villages scheme if the Culcairn supply is transferred to another entity with Riverina Water County Council flagging a willingness to take it on.

Two staff members from Greater Hume would also be expected to be transferred if Albury took over the villages scheme.

Billing systems would also need to be aligned with Greater Hume presently invoicing customers quarterly, but Albury sends bills out every four months.

Albury’s average water bill is $448 compared to Greater Hume’s $808.

Greater Hume has indicated the villages scheme assets, including reservoirs, pump stations, reticulation and trunk mains with a replacement cost of $25 million, would be transferred to Albury.