Water tariff hike: Selangor will bear costs for over one million SADE recipients

SHAH ALAM, Jan 18: The Selangor government will absorb and bear the increased costs of water supply for over one million residents in the state, covering 285,673 Pengurusan Air Selangor Sdn Bhd (Air Selangor) accounts that are recipients of free water through the Darul Ehsan Water Scheme (SADE).

Menteri Besar Datuk Seri Amirudin Shari said the state government’s expenditure for the scheme will rise from RM31.8 million to an estimated RM37.3 million annually.

As a result, he said the benefit provided to each household under SADE, which was around RM11.40 per month, have now increased to RM13 per month.

The state government will also cover the increment for places of worship and welfare institutions in Selangor, with an estimated cost of RM2 million.

“In summary, the state government’s financial commitment for offering free water through SADE and absorbing the elevated water tariffs for places of worship and welfare homes is estimated at RM40 million annually,” he said in a statement today.

Amirudin said the allocation in the Selangor Budget 2024 for free water assistance is adequate for the welfare of the people.

At this point, he said the state government is offering an opportunity for residents with incomes of RM5,000 and below who wish to apply for free SADE water. To obtain further information and initiate the application process, individuals can visit the website: https://www.airselangor.com/residential/skim-air-darul-ehsan/.

Yesterday, the National Water Services Commission (SPAN) announced the new tariff adjustments for domestic users in Peninsular Malaysia and the Federal Territory of Labuan, effective from Feb 1.

This adjustment, which involves an average increase of 22 cents per cubic metre, is implemented under the Tariff Setting Mechanism, ensuring a uniform structure and components for water tariffs in Peninsular Malaysia and Labuan. It will undergo a review every three years to maintain payment consistency.

Amirudin said the state government’s position, reflected in this adjustment, aims to ensure sustainability and empower Air Selangor in tackling issues like leaky and burst pipes. The initiative includes doubling the annual replacement rate of old pipes from 150 kilometres(km) to 300 km, starting this year.

In addition, he said new water treatment plants would be built to achieve a 20 per cent water reserve margin by 2030 and this involves enhancing maintenance and improvement efforts, including installing new pipes in low water pressure areas.

“Moreover, the water quality delivered to the public will be consistently maintained at 99 per cent, in accordance with the Ministry of Health (MOH) standards. This will be complemented by the integration of online analysers to monitor water quality,” he said.

Amirudin highlighted that the state government, in collaboration with Air Selangor, will enhance service quality to be more responsive and efficient for the public which includes upgrading the Air Selangor application.

Air Selangor stands as Malaysia’s largest water supply service provider, delivering clean water to a population exceeding eight million people. This service spans 2,661,743 accounts, catering to both domestic and non-domestic users.