Kouga Municipality to reduce water tariffs, alleviating the high cost of living

Jeffreys BayKouga Municipality is set to reduce water tariffs for its residents in a bid to provide some financial relief in the face of the ever-increasing cost of living and to stimulate economic growth.

The decision to lower water tariffs (from category Part C to Part B) was approved by Council at a Special Council meeting held on 7 November 2023.

The new tariffs will take effect at the end of November.

Welcome Decision

This welcome decision was taken even though the Department of Water and Sanitation has not yet declared an end to the ongoing drought in the region, and other drought-affected areas are still maintaining high water tariffs.

“The existing water tariffs had been quite punitive, a necessity during the height of the water crisis that saw dam levels plummeting to below 4%,” said Kouga Executive Mayor, Hattingh Bornman. “However, given the significant increase in dam levels, it was deemed appropriate to decrease these tariffs.”

Soaring Cost Of Living

According to Bornman, high water tariffs can exacerbate the already soaring cost of living, particularly for the most vulnerable members of society.

“To address this issue and provide much-needed relief to the poorest of the poor, the municipality has decided to reduce water tariffs,” he said.

“By implementing lower water tariffs, we, as a caring municipality, can strike a balance between sustaining essential water services and ensuring affordability for all – mitigating the financial strain on households, while promoting social and economic well-being.

“In doing so, we create a more just and equitable society where access to clean water is a right, not a privilege.”

See also: Council declares amnesty period for high water accounts