Help with high energy costs

Today, Labor Candidate Lisa Chesters encouraged Bendigo and central Victoria to take advantage of a $20.6 million subsidy scheme from the Federal Labor Government designed to help low income Australians pay for energy saving household appliances.

Ms Chesters said the Government’s scheme will allow eligible Australians to access subsidies under the Home Energy Saver Scheme (HESS) and the No Interest Loans Scheme for the purchase of energy efficient household appliances with a minimum star rating.

“The Federal Labor Government is investing in this initiative to ensure that people who are facing financial hardship in Bendigo and central Victoria are in a position to buy energy efficient household appliances including heaters, refrigerators, freezers, washing machines, clothes dryers and hot water systems,” Ms Chesters said.

"A heater can be bought for as little as $19, but what doesn't come with the price tag is a warning that this product will cost you hundreds of dollars in electricity because it uses 2000 Watts"

"Not only will this little heater send your energy bills through the roof, it's also an environmental destroyer." 

“Labor knows that running energy saving appliances will help reduce household bills over time and will make a significant difference to the cost of living pressures faced by the people of our community.”

“A low income family could receive up to $800 off the upfront cost of a 3.5 star rated refrigerator and a no interest loan for the remaining amount of the purchase. Subsidies are also available to help cover the cost of delivery and installation,” Ms Chesters said.

Ms Chesters said the Government’s No Interest Loans Scheme is a successful partnership between Good Shepherd Microfinance, the Australian Government and the National Australia Bank.

“This successful partnership between Government, business and the community sector highlights the benefits of working together to deliver financial support to vulnerable Australians living in central Victoria and across the nation,” Ms Chesters said.

"This is a smart and sensible project and I encourage families to find out how they can benefit."

For more information on the subsidy scheme, visit www.fahcsia.gov.au/hess or contact the national HESS Helpline on 1800 007 001.