This initiative promotes the sustainable management of water through improvements to the statewide Bulk Water Entitlement Framework. The project's key objectives are to clarify roles and responsibilities for aspects of water management, introduce consistent legal rights for alternative water sources, and assist in transitioning smoothly to Water Resource Plans under the proposed Basin Plan. 

Total EC3 investment: $1.24 m 

2012-13 expenditure: $0.3179 m 
2013-14 expenditure: $0.2194 m 
2014-15 expenditure: $0.2472 m  
2015-16 expenditure: $0.4528 m 

Progress

An extensive review into Victoria's bulk water entitlement framework was undertaken, which identified a number of major policy reforms that would simplify the management of Victoria's water resources at the bulk scale.  The most substantive reforms proposed under this initiative, which would require legislative amendments, include: 

  • the consolidation, in one place, of entitlement and water system management arrangements for specified areas; and 
  • the conversion of environmental entitlements into bulk entitlements to rationalise the number of entitlement products. 

The work culminated in a proposal to amend the Water Act 1989 to: 

  • Include a new instrument called Water Resource Management Orders (WRMO), which would include water system rules currently in bulk entitlements, licence restrictions, trading rules, carryover rules, capping arrangements, clarification of water for the environment and clearly set out water resource management roles and responsibilities. 
  • Codify statutory rights to stormwater enabling licensing of stormwater. 

The review also considered how to simplify the bulk entitlement arrangements within the current legislative framework. This included: 

  • Investigating what existing legislative power can be used to clarify current resource arrangements in the absence of a single amalgamated instrument. 
  • Carrying out a review of bulk entitlements to compare similarities and differences across all BEs and recommend improvements. 
  • Determining what changes to the entitlement framework might be needed to ensure Basin Plan Water Resource Plans can be implemented. 
  • Progressing entitlement framework improvements through the development of Victoria's new water plan,Water For Victoria.

Page last updated: 30/10/18