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The Minister for Energy and Resources made Orders imposing Ministerial licence conditions to regulate electricity connection timeframes for new housing developments on 21 November 2023.

The Orders apply to 4 of Victoria’s 5 electricity distribution businesses – AusNet, Jemena, Powercor and United Energy – and will oblige these businesses to meet target timeframes when completing 3 key stages of the connection process:

  • the masterplan review
  • design review and
  • audit stages.

No order has been made in relation to CitiPower as it does not undertake these types of connections due to the location and geography of its network (covering the Melbourne CBD and inner suburbs).

The regulated timeframes are based on those set through the Essential Services Commission’s Greenfield negotiated electricity connection customer service standards.

These reforms give effect to the Victorian Government’s commitment to address lengthy delays affecting electricity connections for new housing developments and are expected to drive significant benefits in bringing distribution business performance in line with agreed targets.

The Orders will commence on 1 January 2024 and will remain in effect for 5 years, until 31 December 2028.

The Orders are available here: https://www.gazette.vic.gov.au/gazette/Gazettes2023/GG2023S700

The government worked closely with stakeholders in developing these reforms. Details of this engagement are provided below.

Engagement to develop the Orders

In 2020 the department wrote to Victoria’s electricity distribution businesses seeking preliminary views about regulated connection timeframes for new housing developments. The responses received from each distribution business are available below.

The department held a forum to discuss regulating timeframes with all interested stakeholders on 12 February 2021.

A consultation paper was published and sought written submissions from stakeholders. Five submissions were received and are available below.

This feedback from stakeholders informed the development of draft Orders for the Ministerial licence conditions.

In November 2023 the Minister for Energy and Resources provided affected licensees as well as the Premier, Treasurer and Minister responsible for the Essential Services Act 2001 with notice of her intent to make the Orders.

Before making the Orders, the Minister had regard to all representations received and considered any significant costs and benefits of the Orders, as per the requirements of the Electricity Industry Act 2000.

These reforms address an issue of longstanding interest to the Victorian Government and build on the work and recommendations of previous reviews undertaken on this matter by the Essential Services Commission and the Red Tape Commissioner:

Page last updated: 14/01/24