Sydney Water operates several social programs. The social objectives of the programs are to:
Sydney Water makes payments to eligible recipients and is reimbursed by the NSW Government. During 2009–10, Sydney Water spent over $130 million on social program payments.
Total expenditure during 2009–10 represents an increase of 15.5%, or $17.4 million, on the previous year.
Sydney Water gives rebates to pensioners for water, wastewater and drainage service charges. The rebate covers 100% of the water service charge, 50% of the drainage service charge and 86% of the wastewater service charge. Eligibility for this scheme is open to all valid Pensioner Concession Card holders.
During 2009–10, over 220,000 pensioner households received a concession on water, wastewater and drainage service charges. The typical concession value was $508.95 per pensioner during 2009–10.
The Sydney Water Act 1994 specifies that certain types of properties are exempt from paying service charges. Exemptions are granted following a formal application and on-site inspection. Land owned and used by organisations that provide not-for-profit community services is generally exempt.
During 2009–10, service charge exemptions were granted to over 12,000 properties. The total cost of the scheme was $12,273,000.
This scheme aims to reduce the impact of price increases on large families and
Sydney Water spent a total of $663,942 during 2009–10 on the Hardship Support Scheme.
During 2009–10, Sydney Water subsidised the Blue Mountains Septic Pump-out Scheme by servicing an average of 292 properties a month with septic pump-out services. Demand for this scheme is expected to decrease over time, as properties are connected to reticulated services under the Priority Sewerage Program. Net expenditure for this scheme was $738,163 during 2009–10.