The Electricity Authority (the Authority) has reviewed its consultation charter as a result of the Electricity Industry Amendment Act 2022, and some of the recommendations from the Electricity Price Review.
Their goal is to simplify the charter and make it more accessible to small electricity consumers. And, while reviewing the consultation charter the Authority also took the opportunity to:
- review and streamline the request process for changes to the Electricity Industry Participation Code 2010 (the Code)
- establish a new advisory group
- update the advisory group's charter and terms of reference, and
- review the amendment process for documents incorporated by reference.
They have requested feedback on the:
- proposed changes to the consultation charter
- advisory group documents
- structure and membership of the new advisory group
- proposed changes to the Code for documents incorporated by reference.
This consultation ran from 31 January to 21 March 2023.
In response to this consultation, we have made the following recommendations.
- The Authority must consider its broadened mandate and how it can ensure the interests of domestic and small business consumers are protected in relation to the supply of electricity.
- The Authority should discard all options for the new advisory group and develop a new option in consultation with existing entities that represent domestic and small business consumers.
- Small consumers should be guaranteed membership of advisory groups and in numbers that are impactful.
- Any new advisory group should have a specific role to consider what domestic and small business consumers want, need and what they prioritise.
- The Authority’s consultation processes should recognise the role of the Council.
- The Authority should create a standing advisory group that it consults on all matters that affect consumers.
- The Authority should always put domestic and small business consumers first.
- The Authority should allow domestic and small business consumers more time in consultative processes.