JOHANNESBURG – The City of Johannesburg on Thursday said as much as it was mindful of the tough economic climate and pressure on residents, its rates and tax increases effective next week were guided by increasing operating costs.

From 1 July, Joburg residents will pay 2% more for property rates, electricity rates will go up by 14.59%, water and sanitation by 6.8% and refuse removal by 4.3%.

The high electricity hike is linked to the energy regulator Nersa giving Eskom the green light to charge customers and municipalities more.

City Power’s Frank Hinda said: “We’re also on the receiving end as far as this is concerned. We’re cushioning the customer given that our increase from Eskom is higher.”

Hinda said he realised that the 14.59% electricity hike passed on to customers would hit residents pockets hard given the current economic climate.

The average electricity user – prepaid or conventional – consuming 800 kilowatt-hours a month – can expect to fork out between R200 and R260 more a month.

Source: Eyewitness News