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  • by Karma Loveday

Castle calls for market improvements for customers with sub meters

Castle Water’s chief executive John Reynolds has called on Ofwat, MOSL, CCW and the Strategic Panel to reform market arrangements for business customers with sub meters.

In a letter, Reynolds flagged up the extensive problems facing the thousands of customers who have sub meters or private meter networks. The list included:

  • arrangements for submitting sub-meter readings to CMOS (by wholesalers);

  • the absence of a process for customers or retailers to provide these reads to wholesalers;

  • the resulting lack of sub meter readings in CMOS and a “complex and illogical” provision where reads are absent, which is to use Industry Level Estimates rather than the more common Yearly Volume Estimates. This results in very high estimated usage for sub meters;

  • “since the non-household customer receives a bill based on their own meter usage minus sub-meter usage, the ILE results in an unusually high and incorrect deduction, and systemically under-estimated overall charges”; and

  • knock on effects for billing, and the risk of catch up bills for customers running to thousands of pounds.

Reynolds noted: “Castle Water works proactively with wholesalers including Thames Water, South East Water and Affinity Water to resolve individual issues, but this is intensive and not an acceptable alternative to a proper settlement mechanism."


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