To assist in our review of the rate of return guideline, we have appointed a consumer reference group.
Our rate of return guideline (Guideline) sets out the approach by which we will estimate the rate of return, and comprises the return on debt and the return on equity, as well as the value of imputation credits.
Estimation of the rate of return is complex, and the rate of return is a significant driver of regulated revenue.
We have now engaged the initial group of 13 members representing a range of consumer perspectives. However, we encourage other consumer representatives to contact us at email@example.com if you are interested in joining the CRG during the course of the review.
What is the consumer reference group
Contributions from consumers are a central part of our process – we recognize that the decisions we make and the actions we take in performing our regulatory roles and other activities affect a wide range of individuals, businesses and organisations. The NEO and NGO, which are the overarching objectives on which the entire regulatory framework is based, focus on promoting the long-term interests of consumers.
The role of the CRG is to provide direct and ongoing feedback to the AER during guideline development, and to facilitate broader consumer participation and engagement. We anticipate that CRG members will take up opportunities to work collaboratively, provide submissions on our issues papers and draft decision, and contribute to our workshops and forums.
Engagement with the CRG
CRG members will have opportunities to:
- participate in monthly meetings with AER staff
- where interested, attend skills or information sessions to assist them with better understanding the review process or contentious issues
- attend major forums or workshops in person.
We anticipate providing some compensation for the costs incurred by CRG members participating in the process.
We will seek to minimise the time and cost requirements by conducting regular meetings and skills sessions by phone or video conference. Where we are hosting sessions at which it is important for the CRG to attend in person, we intend to provide funding to cover the CRG’s costs.