Water Charges and Services


Council is responsible for providing a safe, reliable and cost effective drinking water supply which is customer focused, enhances the environment and caters for the sustainable growth of the local government area.

Customers can apply to connect to Council's water supply or sewerage systems, or make changes to existing water connections such as installing an additional water meter, changing the size or relocating your existing meter, installing meter guards or a backflow prevention device. If you are not the property owner, you must obtain the owner’s written approval in accordance with the Local Government Act 1993.

For further information and to apply, please visit Council’s Connect to water and sewerage page and complete the Application to Connect to Council’s water supply system. Council will provide a written quote to the applicant within ten (10) working days of receipt of the quote request. The quote will only be valid for three (3) months after issue.

Customer Service Standards

Every two years, Council adopts Customer Service Standards for Water Supply Services. These define the level of service Council aims to supply to its water supply customers. The Water Supply and Sewerage Customer Service Plan 2022/2023 & 2023/2024 (PDF 4.6MB) was adopted at the November 2022 Council Meeting.

Depending on where you live, there may be differences in the level of service. This is because Council has adopted different Customer Service Levels within the Local Government area.

Dubbo - Water supply services area (PDF 1.5MB)
Eumungerie - Water supply services area (PDF 272.7KB)
Geurie - Water supply services area (PDF 132.9KB)
Mumbil - Water supply services area (PDF 145.5KB)
Wellington - Water supply services area (PDF 463.8KB) 
Wongarbon/Ballimore - Water supply services area (PDF 449.4KB)

water SUPPLY SERVICES policy

Council's Water Supply Services Policy (PDF 1.7MB) deals with water connections from Council's water reticulation network supplying drinking water onto the property of the water supply customer. The policy also includes information on water meters, fire services, backflow prevention, water theft, technical administration, pricing and charges.

The fact sheets for the former Dubbo (PDF 1.3MB) and Wellington (PDF 1.4MB) regions provide an overview of frequently asked questions on water connection, types of services, water meters, water service access and usage charges.

The Water Responsibility (PDF 650.3KB) fact sheet provides information on your and Council's responsibility for water supply services.

Current water charges

The water consumption is shown on the Rates and Charges instalment notice each quarter. The consumption figure is for the water consumed in the previous quarter.

Dubbo has adopted a flat charge for water usage. Customers pay $2.22 for each kilolitre used as per Council's Revenue Policy 2022/2023.  There is no "allocation" and no step increase in charge beyond a certain level of usage.

A kilolitre is one thousand litres of water. It occupies one cubic metre and weighs exactly one tonne (t).

Wellington uses a step tariff to calculate water usage charges. There are two tariffs depending on if the property is classified as residential or commercial. The steps go over the full year.

0 - 300 kl         $2.42 per kl
301 to 500 kl $2.47 per kl
501 to 10,000 kl $2.65 per kl
10,001 + $2.86 per kl
0 - 300 kl  $1.67 per kl
301 to 500 kl  $1.80 per kl
501 to 10,000 kl  $2.19 per kl
10,001 +   $2.75 per kl

Water Access Charge

A Water Service Access charge is an annual fee to cover the cost of making a water service available to a property. Water Access Charges are levied on all properties to which the service is available, regardless of whether the water is connected to the property or not.

The charge is determined by the size of the meter connected to the property, or, if no meter is connected, the default rate for one 20 mm meter is charged. Most residential meters are the 20mm size.

The water availability charge depends on the size of the water meter and is charged per meter.

Water Meters

Water meters accurately record the water consumed by each property, which enables billing by Council for the water consumed and permits Council to account for all the water supplied to the community.

Access to meters

Under the Local Government Act, Council can enter private property to carry out water supply work such as meter reading. It would be appreciated if you could assist with providing access and regularly trimming shrubs from around the meter.

If your meter is in a locked area or, if there is a dog in the yard when the meter reader calls, you may receive a card in your letterbox asking you to self read your water meter. The card gives instructions on how to do this and doubles as a reply paid letter, which may be posted back to Council without a stamp. If you receive one of these cards and you have any questions, please contact Council on (02) 6801 4000.

It is an offence to tamper or interfere with the normal operation of water meters. If you believe that your meter has been tampered with, please contact Council as soon as possible.

Council sometimes installs tamper evident devices on water meters. If one is fitted to your meter, you do not have to do anything.

If you damage your meter or the pipes connected to it, contact Council as soon as possible.

Meter replacement

In order to ensure the ongoing accuracy of Council's Water Meter Fleet, Council has adopted a Water Meter Replacement Program. Water meters may be replaced after they have reached their useful life, damaged, faulty, or as deemed by the Director Infrastructure.

Water meter testing

Water meters accurately record water consumption for charging purposes. If you believe your water meter is not accurately recording water consumption you may apply to Council for your water meter to be tested.

In accordance with Council’s Revenue Policy, charges apply for testing of water meters.

The completed Application for Water Meter testing by a Third Party (PDF 739.1KB) along with payment must be submitted to Council.

Council will reimburse the charge, if the water meter is found to be outside the range of +/- 4% accuracy.


Categorisation of Water Customers

Council is required to report to NSW and Commonwealth Agencies on the amount of water used by different sectors of the economy. In order to effect this, Council categorise each of its water supply customers into one of the following:

  • Residential: Water use associated predominantly with human habitation of the land and building. Internal use of water such as bathroom, kitchen and laundry. External use includes garden watering. This includes water supplied to stand alone residences, flats, strata units or duplex, triplex or similar.
  • Commercial: Water supplied to properties where the predominate activity is commercial or business but not industrial. This includes offices, shops, clubs, hotels, motels, caravan parks, etc.
  • Industrial – mining: Water use by customers that mainly extract naturally occurring mineral solids (e.g. coal and ores); liquid mineral (crude petroleum); gases (natural gas), underground and open-cut mining, dredging, and quarrying. Water use in  processing activities (crushing, screening, washing, flotation etc) is also included.
  • Industrial – manufacturing: Includes customers mainly engaged in physical or chemical transformation of materials, substances, components into new products. This includes geophysical surveying activity, refining, smelting, coking or cement manufacture. It excludes agriculture and construction activities but includes meat, seafood and agricultural processing activities.
  • Industrial – electricity generation: Includes potable water supplied to electricity generating customers.
  • Industrial –  other: Includes potable water supplied to all other industrial customers.
  • Rural: Includes potable water supplied for stock and domestic uses outside urban zoned land, including market gardens and agricultural irrigation.
  • Municipal – excluding public parks: Includes hospitals, schools, nursing homes, colleges, universities, gaols, etc.
  • Municipal – public parks: Includes watering of public parks, gardens and ovals, etc.
  • Bulk Water: Water sold in bulk to another person, organisation or corporation. Water sold in bulk to other utilities or entities outside Council’s geographic area of responsibility.
  • Unbilled: Includes fire fighting and water mains flushing as this is authorised supply and is not a water loss. Examples include fire fighting via customer fire connections and street hydrants.

The categorisation can affect the water charges customers have to pay. While the Water Service Access Charge (S.501) does not distinguish between customers, different Water Supply Usage Charges (S.502) are levied, depending on whether the customer is categorised as Residential, or Non-Residential.

Also, the category will affect the Sewerage Charge. Council’s Revenue Policy has different Sewerage Charges, depending on whether the property is categorised as Residential or Non-Residential.

If you do not agree with the customer category Council has assigned to your property, please contact Council’s Customer Experience Centre on 02 6801 4000.

Last Edited: 29 Nov 2022

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