Friday, 24 August 2018

A re-elected Andrews Labor Government will put the Latrobe Valley at the centre of the booming solar industry with a new Morwell-based government agency, Solar Victoria, to deliver our $1.3 billion Solar Homes program.

Premier Daniel Andrews today visited Gippsland Solar in Traralgon to meet workers following the Government’s landmark Solar Homes program, which will see 710,000 Victorian households benefit from lower electricity bills and 5,500 new jobs created across the state, including many here in the Latrobe Valley.

Through Labor’s Solar Homes program, homeowners can install half price solar panels with an interest free loan or get $1,000 off the cost of a solar hot water system via a rebate.

The program will save locals up to $2,250 on installation of an average 4kW solar panel system and around $890 a year on their electricity bills, or up to $400 a year on their electricity bills with solar hot water.

This program will be rolled out by Solar Victoria, who will be located at Morwell’s new $25 million GovHub building.

Solar Victoria will work with industry, regulators and training organisations to deliver this program, including providing information to households about eligibility, how to access rebates, how to find an approved installer and products, as well as providing advice to industry on accreditation and auditing programs.

The new Solar Victoria jobs will be in addition to the 150 Victorian public service workers from Parks Victoria, the EPA and Earth Resources Regulation that will also be based at Morwell GovHub.

Victorians are eligible for the program if they have a household income of up to $180,000 and live in their own home valued at up to $3 million. This means almost all Latrobe Valley homeowners will be eligible, with 95 per cent of local households meeting the income test.

Labor’s Solar Homes program will bring the number of homes in Victoria with solar panels to one million within ten years. It will also save Victorians more than $500 million a year on their electricity bills once the program is complete and generate 12.5 per cent of Victoria’s target to generate 40 per cent renewable energy by 2025.

Construction of the GovHub building at 65 Church Street will start later this year, creating 100 construction jobs and housing up to 300 workers when it is completed in 2020, including up to 50 Solar Victoria workers.

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Quotes attributable to Premier Daniel Andrews

“Victorian families are fed up with big corporations price gouging and ripping them off ever since Jeff Kennett and the Liberals sold Hazelwood off and privatised our electricity.”

“Only Labor will help Latrobe Valley families cut their electricity bills with solar power and create new, high skilled jobs for locals with the new GovHub building at Morwell.”

Quote attributable to Member for Eastern Victoria Harriet Shing

“Making Morwell the home of Solar Victoria will also bring up to 50 additional jobs to the Latrobe Valley as part of our ongoing transition and development work across the region.”