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Greater Western Water: a new era

On 1 July 2021, City West Water and Western Water integrated to form a new water corporation - Greater Western Water.

Greater Western Water will deliver water services across Melbourne’s CBD, inner- and north-west suburbs, through the Melton and Sunbury growth corridors, to Bacchus Marsh and Macedon Ranges.

Over the next 30 years, Melbourne’s west is expected to double in population.

This rapid growth across our two neighbouring service areas has meant we have needed to look at new ways of doing things to ensure high-quality, affordable and secure water services well into the future.

We have worked closely with the Victorian Government to form Greater Western Water in the interests of all City West Water and Western Water customers.

It’s not a decision we’ve made lightly

We have worked together to identify the best solution, which will lead to better service, more secure water availability and put downward pressure on costs for the fast-growing outer-western region.

It’s an exciting step forward to ensure we can meet the needs of everyone living and working in the diverse and vibrant communities of our city and the west, as well as the growing demand for new infrastructure and services.

Our new name will be Greater Western Water

Our name will change to Greater Western Water from 1 July.

We’ll support our people and customers to smoothly transition into one organisation and will continue to form partnerships with our community.

More information and next steps

Regular updates will be available online as we move towards 1 July.

Below are a range of questions and answers about Greater Western Water. You can also ask questions and provide feedback via our Engage (Western Water) and Your Say (City West Water) pages.

What will happen to the City West Water and Western Water brands?

From 1 July 2021, City West Water and Western Water will become Greater Western Water. We will have a new brand and website.

Customers will continue to have access to customer support and services via our new website: gww.com.au. You can also call us on 13 44 99.

Are water costs likely to rise?

We are delivering on the Victorian Government’s commitment to providing sustainable, reliable and affordable water services now and into the future.

Integrating Western Water (WW) and City West Water (CWW) supports secure, affordable and reliable services for Melbourne’s outer west.

Our pricing proposals for the next two years aim to reduce typical bills for all our Greater Western Water customers. We are already planning for the next price submission for 2023-2028.

As part of this process, we’ll focus our attention on customer service standards, tariff structures and cost savings. We will keep you updated as we develop the 2023-2028 price submission.

What about the community sponsorships and partnerships in place with each organisation?

Community is at the heart of our corporate strategies.

Sponsorships and community partnership programs currently underway with City West Water (CWW) and Western Water (WW) will continue as they do now until the end of 2021 and under the terms of the existing agreements.

For the second half of 2021, we will have a sponsorships and partnerships program for the entire Greater Western Water community.

We are working on a new Greater Western Water sponsorship and partnership program for 2022.

What will happen to the current Western Water and City West offices?

Greater Western Water will manage the existing City West Water (CWW) and Western Water (WW) offices. We’ll remain in the regions at our Footscray and Sunbury offices, as well as all depots and offices of CWW and WW - in line with current coronavirus (COVID-19) guidelines.

The GWW executive is expected to work across the GWW service areas in line with COVID-safe practices, including a continued, strong executive presence in Sunbury

The Victorian Government has committed $500,000 to start planning upgrades to the Sunbury office, focused on creating a COVID-safe Greater Western Water Hub to support the growing region.

Due to flexible working arrangements and many current CWW employees living closer to the Sunbury office, an extra 50 existing or new staff will be offered the opportunity to work out of the Sunbury office over the next three years.

What will happen to existing water services and works in progress?

All services and works will continue as they do now. We are committed to providing the best customer experiences and affordable services to our customers.

What is happening now, leading into the integration on 1 July 2021?

The Victorian Government is supporting the integration of City West Water (CWW) and Western Water (WW). A Joint Transition Committee independently chaired by Cheryl Batagol PSM, and comprised of members from both CWW and WW Boards, is overseeing the transition.

A project team with representatives from both CWW and WW is managing the integration process and a detailed program of works will be delivered over coming years.

We’re looking in detail at our work programs, systems and processes, as well as organisational structures.

There is ongoing consultation with all employees and the relevant unions as this work progresses, under the WW and CWW enterprise agreements.

Who is the integration between?

Western Region Water Corporation and City West Water Corporation are two government owned water entities that operate in Melbourne’s west. The two water corporations will be integrated into a single water entity, known as Greater Western Water, to service Melbourne’s CBD and outer metro west region from 1 July 2021.

Why is the integration happening?

City West Water and Western Water have worked together in the region for many years to provide infrastructure and water resource solutions for our shared region. With the population of Melbourne's west expected to double over the next 30 years, Greater Western Water will help us meet growing service demands and maintain reliable, affordable water services for all our customers.

As Greater Western Water, we will reduce household water bills into the future, provide new job opportunities and stay local with existing offices and field depots.

What research and investigation has resulted in this outcome?

City West Water (CWW) and Western Water (WW) have worked together for many years to explore ways to share assets, resources and opportunities to reduce costs to our businesses and customers.

WW and CWW have been leading discussions with the Victorian Government to balance urban growth in the region with the provision of affordable and secure water supply and wastewater services.

In 2019, WW, CWW, the Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning (DELWP) and Melbourne Water worked together to investigate ways to keep delivering high quality, affordable services.

This found that significant government investment and/or customer bill increases would be needed over the next decade and beyond to support WW to continue in its current form. As such, Greater Western Water was created to form a new integrated water entity, as the best option to support affordable, reliable services in the next decade and well into the future.

The Chairs of both Boards support this recommendation and the Minister for Water jointly announced the integration with the Chairs in October 2020.

We’ll continue to work with the Victorian Government to ensure we best meet your needs.

When will the integration take place?

Greater Western Water will integrate Western Water and City West Water on 1 July 2021.

We’re progressively aligning our systems and processes and it will be business as usual as this date approaches.

What does this mean for employees?

All existing staff from both City West Water and Western Water will be part of Greater Western Water from 1 July 2021.

As we combine the two organisations, one leadership team will guide Greater Western Water – a Board and a management team.

With another 100,000 customers forecast over the next 10 years, we expect overall job opportunities at Greater Western Water to grow. We aim to be recognised as an employer of choice.

Where will the new entity be?

We’ll keep our Footscray and Sunbury offices and all depots and offices of CWW and WW, in line with current coronavirus (COVID-19) guidelines.

We will focus on our staff living locally, which we expect will increase opportunities for staff to work across the Sunbury and Footscray offices and depots, depending on where they live and their circumstances.

The Victorian Government has committed $500,000 of funding to begin planning upgrades to the Sunbury office, focused on creating a COVID Safe Greater Western Water Hub to support the growing region.

This will include space for 50 additional staff to be based at Sunbury over the next three years.

The GWW executive is expected to work across the GWW service areas in line with COVD Safe practices, including a continued, strong executive presence in Sunbury.

Who will oversee the integration?

The Victorian Government is supporting the integration of City West Water (CWW) and Western Water (WW). A Joint Transition Committee (JTC) independently chaired by Cheryl Batagol PSM, and comprised of members from both CWW and WW Boards, is overseeing the transition.

In addition to Ms Batagol, Western Water is represented by current Board members Jane Doolan, Liza McDonald and Les McLean with CWW Board members Bruce Cohen, Tania Fryer and Sawsan Howard. The JTC will work with the community to help shape Greater Western Water.

Who is City West Water?

City West Water (CWW) is a statutory water authority incorporated under the Water Act 1989. It is one of three retail water corporations in metropolitan Melbourne owned by the State of Victoria. Its core business is to supply water, sewerage, trade waste and, where available, recycled water to customers in accordance with our Customer Charter.

CWW services approximately 431,600 residential properties, 41,600 non-residential properties (including schools, councils, industrial, commercial and small businesses) and more than 1.1 million customers. CWW manages $1.9 billion of infrastructure across more than 700 square kilometres.

Who is Western Water?

Western Water (Western Region Water Corporation) is one of Victoria’s 13 regional urban water corporations established under the Water Act 1989. Western Water provides water, recycled water and sewerage services in Bacchus Marsh, Melton, Sunbury, the Macedon Ranges and surrounds. In 2018/19, Western Water provided water, sewerage and recycled water to 72,825 serviced properties across 3,000 square kilometres to the north-west of Melbourne.

Will customers have a say?

The decision to create Greater Western Water was not made lightly. It was made in the interests of our customers, our staff and our region.

We have been keeping our people, customers and the community informed as we move closer to integration on 1 July 2021. We want our customers to provide feedback on the integration and the new water corporation. Customers can stay up to date with the integration, ask questions and provide feedback via the Engage (Western Water) and Your Say (City West Water) pages.

What will change for customers from 1 July 2021?

Here’s an overview of what’s changing for customers from 1 July 2021:

  • We’ll have a new Greater Western Water website gww.com.au
  • Customer bills will feature the new Greater Western Water logo and contact information
  • Payment options will stay the same, but your statement will be from Greater Western Water, instead of City West Water (CWW) or Western Water (WW)
  • There will be new contact details for Greater Western Water. However, you can still contact us in all the same ways you do now. All existing CWW and WW contact details will be redirected to Greater Western Water.

Even though our name, look and website are changing, you can expect the same customer-focused service and support from our team.

Service delivery partner and support FAQs

I have an existing contract with CWW/WW, what will happen to this contract on 1 July 2021?

There will be no material changes to your contract as a result of the integration. More information will be provided to all existing service delivery partners, contractors and suppliers about what to expect on 1 July 2021.

I am accredited with CWW / WW, does that transfer across to GWW?

You will be able to continue to work with GWW under your current accreditations. Organisations accredited only to WW will need to apply for accreditation and/or dispensation with CWW prior to 1 July or GWW after 1 July 2021.

What standards will apply for GWW? How can I find them?

The existing CWW and WW technical standards will continue to apply from 1 July 2021. As GWW, we will work towards consolidated technical standards and provide more information as it becomes available.

What approved products list will GWW use? How can I access this?

Please continue to refer to the approved products list for CWW and WW. An approved GWW products list will be published when it is available.

What impact will the integration have on capital and operational budgets?

We are working on a GWW Corporate Plan for FY22. However, infrastructure delivery programs, including investment in growth, and important service delivery work programs will not be affected by our integration.

What changes will I see to the way projects are procured and managed?

There will be no immediate changes to CWW and WW procurement practices. We are working on a standardised approach for GWW and will keep you informed of any changes that might impact you.

Will any contract conditions (such as payment terms) change?

There will be no change to existing contract conditions when we become GWW.

Where can I see the planned forward work program for GWW?

Your existing contacts at CWW and WW remain the best source of information about our work programs. More information about our future GWW work programs will be provided after 1 July 2021.

Who should I contact for more information related to how this affects me or my business?

Your existing contacts at CWW and WW remain the best source of information about the integration and how it will affect you.

Who should I contact for more information related to how this affects me or my business?

Your existing contacts at CWW and WW remain the best source of information about the integration and how it will affect you.

What confined space entry (CSE) process will apply for entry to sewer networks?

There will be no immediate changes to our CSE processes. We are working to standardise these processes across the GWW service area and will keep you informed as more information becomes available.

Do I still ring the same number for CSE entry/exit?

Yes. Please continue to follow the conditions of your CSE permit from 1 July 2021. This includes calling us on our existing numbers before you enter and exit confined spaces. We will keep you informed before we make any changes to these conditions and processes.

Will GWW’s expectations on how we manage safety on sites change as a result of this integration?

As GWW, we will remain committed to providing a healthy and safe workplace for our people (employees, contractors, and visitors), customers and the community. This includes maintaining a work environment that is free from physical and psychological harm. We will also work hard to align differing expectations across our GWW service area in the future.

Will my project contacts or contract manager change on 1 July 2021?

Your contacts and contract manager will not change as a result of the integration. When we become GWW, existing contact numbers and email addresses will be redirected to our new GWW details.

Will my WW/CWW contact’s email change?

Email addresses will change from 1 July 2021 to reflect the new organisation. Our existing contact numbers and email addresses will be redirected to our new GWW number and email addresses.

I have a CWW email address, will my CWW email address change?

Yes. Your CWW email address will change on 1 July 2021 but you can continue to use your existing email address.

Do I need to submit anything to ensure payments continue under existing contracts?

Please continue to forward your invoices with relevant PO number to your CWW and WW contacts and/or accounts payable email distribution email.

How do I find out more?

Please speak with your regular CWW or WW contract contact or visit the delivery partner hub on the CWW website for the latest information.

Who do I call for a water or sewer fault?

From 1 July 2021, all water and sewer faults can be reported by calling 134 499. You will also be able to continue to use existing CWW and WW service faults numbers.

How will logos/signs used by delivery partners be managed from 1 July 2021?

We will launch our new GWW brand on 1 July 2021 and begin to apply this brand to across key GWW assets. However, it will take time for all of our assets to be rebranded.

How will GWW contractor online inductions be managed?

Your online induction process will not change. However, we will look to align our induction process as part of our integration activities.

Will the Land Development process or manual change?

The GWW Land Development Manual will be available via the GWW website from 1 July 2021.

Will the connections or metering process change?

Existing procedures and processes will remain in place, until a new GWW process has been developed.

Will my access to GIS be affected?

You will continue to have access to the asset information you use today. We will keep you informed of any changes to the GIS and assist with respect to any changes that might arise.

Will I need a new access card for depot access?

Your existing access card will continue to work at the sites you are accustomed to accessing. We will be in contact with you if we need to issue you a new card.

Will GWW Delivery Partners have access to all GWW sites?

You will have access to the same sites from 1 July 2021. If you require access to an additional site, you will be required to complete appropriate inductions, your Permit to Work (PTW) and, if required, be issued with an access card.

How will Facilities Inductions be managed?

There will be no change to our existing induction procedures while we work towards a standardised GWW induction process. We will inform you of any changes to our facility induction procedure when it is available.