The Victorian Government provides a safety net range of concessions, which reduce the electricity, gas and water bills of people holding certain concession cards. The electricity, gas or water account needs to be in the name of the household member holding the concession card.
There’s also a Utility Relief Grant (URG) which can help with electricity, gas and water bills. It provides short-term assistance, not ongoing support. This grant isn't restricted to people with eligible concession cards - low income families may also be eligible, provided the account holder is enrolled in their energy retailer’s hardship program. Click here to read more about the eligibility criteria for an URG.It’s possible to apply, at the same time, for a grant that covers more than one utility, for example separate grants for both electricity and gas. The grants can be applied for through the electricity, gas or water company. The Concessions Unit of the Victorian Department of Human Services decides on applications. When an application is successful, the grant generally pays part of the bill, not all of it. A Non-Mains Utility Relief Grant eligible people who depend on bottled gas (LPG) and who are in danger of having their supply stopped.
You’ll find more information about concessions and grants on the Department of Human Services’ website or you can ring the Concessions Information Line on 1800 658 521.
The Commonwealth Utilities Allowance assists older people with the cost of utility services, including energy, water and sewerage. It's paid to people receiving a range of income support. Payments are made in four instalments and usually paid with the customer’s first regular Centrelink payment following the qualification dates of 20 March, 20 June, 20 September and 20 December each year. You’ll find more information on the Centrelink website or you can ring Centrelink on 13 2300.