The proposals put forward to convert TECT Consumer Trust to TECT Charitable Trust over five years looks great on paper, but the reality is somewhat different.
Having been a member of the consumer base for some time, it is great getting the TECT cheque. The cheque amounts to about six to eight weeks power and its payment is brought about by consumers paying a premium for power.
If one checks other power suppliers it is obvious Trustpower is more expensive as a direct comparison, but take into consideration the TECT cheque, then it comes out almost the same as some of their competitors.
We also have the added advantage, or disadvantage depending on your views, of contributing to community projects and charitable organisations.
There is also the costs involved in paying trustees and other workers associated with the trust's day-to-day operations. If both the consumers and charitable trusts were disbanded, Trustpower could reduce their pricing and become more competitive and consumers could make donations to charities as they saw fit.
Whatever happens, consumers should think long and hard about the changes suggested and then make a submission. After all, there is a lot at stake.
P Burrell, Katikati (Abridged)