With the continued lack of rainfall that has resulted in one of the longest droughts in recent memory, The Executive Council of The Public Entity Saba has decided to increase the emergency water subsidy. The subsidy, which was introduced in August, will go up from the current two cents per gallon to four cents per gallon, for potable water. The subsidy was introduced to provide relief to residents who have had to endure months of paying for water, at prices which are much higher than those in the region and as well as the Dutch Kingdom. The funding for the subsidy comes from the Drinking Water Covenant signed between the Executive Council and the Ministry of Infrastructure and the Environment.
The Council made the decision as the impact of the drought continues to be felt throughout the island, and there has been no significant rainfall. Also, production of water has been less than was initially calculated before the introduction of the subsidy. Additionally rainfall outlooks by experts continue to point to lower than average rainfall amounts going forward.
The emergency subsidy will continue to be provided to consumers as it has been done since the introduction. Consumers will pay less for water when the water is purchased through the water distributors, AquaSab, and HES N.V. The amount that is being subsidized by the government, four cents per gallon will be directly passed on to consumers. Water prices should be respectively: $40 less if a consumer buys 1000 gallons of water, $30 less for 750 gallons and $20 for 500 gallons. All truckers that are delivering water must reduce their price accordingly. Persons that have questions about the pricing should contact the Executive Council. The subsidy will into effect on Friday, October 9th.
Residents are reminded that they should take all necessary measures to conserve water and be cognizant of their water use. Additionally considering the limited number of water distributors, residents should also make sure that they do not wait until their cisterns are empty before ordering water. Instead, they should place their order while there is an adequate amount of water for regular activities in the cistern, this way they will not have to be without water for any length of time.
Press release GIS Saba