Sunday, 20 March 2011

Stevenson Welcomes Water Bill Freeze Pledge

SNP candidate for the new constituency of Banffshire & Buchan Coast Stewart Stevenson MSP has welcomed the pledge that, if re-elected, the SNP Government will freeze water bills for two years and keep Scottish Water safe in public hands.

Finance Secretary John Swinney
confirmed that the SNP will ensure water bills do not rise for the next two years giving further help to hard pressed families. Water bills in Scotland will be £48.00 less than those in England.

Mr Stevenson has added his voice to those calling on the Tories to drop their damaging plans to privatise Scottish Water and sell off one of Scotland’s major assets.

Over the last four years the SNP Scottish Government has invested a record £2.4 billion in improving Scottish Water infrastructure securing a better service and lower prices for the public.

Announcing the SNP’s commitment John Swinney said:

“A re-elected SNP Government will freeze water charges for two years.

“Over the last four years our council tax freeze has helped hard pressed households with average savings of over £300. Now I can confirm that a re-elected SNP Government will continue that help with a two year freeze in water charges that will save Scottish households nearly £50 compared to customers of the privatised English companies.

“And we will keep Scottish Water safe in public hands. Instead of the Tories disastrous privatisation plans, we will ensure the customer benefits from public ownership with better services and lower bills as we turn Scottish Water into a major Scottish enterprise.”


Stewart Stevenson MSP added:

"Helping hard pressed families through the recession has been at the heart of the SNP’s actions in Government. Average families have saved £322 through our council tax freeze and as of April 1st abolishing prescription charges will see those with long term conditions save a further £180.

“This is essential help for families and essential help for our economy. With a Scottish Government working for Scotland we will continue to help households across Scotland with a two year freeze on water charges putting more money in the pockets of our families and our businesses."


Notes:
  1. The average household and sewerage charge is £324 per year in Scotland
  2. In England and Wales charges for 2011-12 will increase by 5%
  3. The average bill in England and Wales will be £372 – meaning publicly owned Scottish Water customers pay £48 less than customers of privatised companies in England.
  4. Customers of South West Water in England will pay up to £518 in annual charges.
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