We are an independent regulator that promotes the long-term interests of Victorian consumers with respect to the price, quality and reliability of essential services.
What we do
Better essential services for Victorian communities.
To promote the long-term interests of Victorian consumers with respect to the price, quality and reliability of essential services.
In place of the Office of the Regulator-General, we were established in 2001 to regulate Victoria’s energy, water and transport sectors, and administer the rate-capping system for the local government sector. We also regulate the Victorian Energy Upgrades program, which aims to reduce greenhouse gases by making energy efficiency improvements more affordable for consumers. We occasionally review other sectors at the request of the Victorian Government.
As the state’s economic regulator of essential services, our work touches the lives of every Victorian every day. Whether we are setting prices, enforcing consumer protections, reporting on service standards or market performance, or determining rate cap applications, our decisions have the potential to affect many aspects of life for every household and business across the state. We are required to give consideration to many factors, including the effect of decisions on consumers experiencing vulnerability.
In line with our stakeholder engagement framework and submissions policy, we consult with stakeholders by conducting workshops, public forums and formal submission processes to help inform our decision making.
We are led by four commissioners and our chief executive officer who promote thought leadership and the delivery of great performance in how we regulate the energy, water, local government and transport sectors.
We achieve our purpose by living our key values:
We will be a strong and fair regulator
To increase trust that we will deliver in the best interests of consumers we will:
- hold regulated businesses to account and deter behaviour that is not consistent with the rules we administer
- promote behaviour in the best interests of consumers
- make use of all the powers available to us in our legislation.
We will be an active regulator
To continue to respond effectively to the changing environment and solve real problems we will:
- engage with the community and stakeholders to understand their needs and expectations
- use data sources and intelligence to assess what is happening in regulated sectors
- continuously improve our regulatory processes and reform our codes
- look for ways to proactively solve issues
- break down barriers to consumers accessing essential services.
We will create incentives for regulated businesses to provide value for customers
To ensure regulated businesses deliver value for customers we will:
- ensure our regulatory frameworks and practices are designed to create effective relationships between those who deliver essential services and their customers
- create incentives for regulated businesses and markets to have strong governance, systems and culture
- promote transparency and accountability for and in regulated businesses
- hold events and campaigns to inform consumers about their rights.
Our strategy outlines how we will deliver better essential services for Victorian communities and continue to promote their long-term interests. It has a medium-term outlook covering a rolling three-year period and is refreshed annually to reflect changes in government and commission priorities.
We have outlined our plans to improve our culture, business systems and processes to help us achieve our strategic goals:
- teams that focus on engaging with stakeholders
- systems and data that drive regulatory outcomes
- engaged people with the right capabilities
- a workplace that is diverse, inclusive and flexible.
We have identified the following priorities for 2023–24 to help us achieve our strategic goals:
- implement reforms in the Victorian Energy Upgrades program
- build the maturity of our enforcement capability
- transform our processes for supporting consumers
- adapt our responses to climate change
- use technology to deliver value to the community.
In addition to the Essential Services Commission Act 2001, several documents make up the framework we use to promote the long term interests of Victorian consumers.