Compass Research Survey Form

THE IMPACT OF HIGHER ELECTRICITY BILLS ON BUSINESSES IN REGIONAL QUEENSLAND

Compass Research is carrying out an independent survey in regional Queensland to help ascertain the impact of rising electricity prices on businesses and the economy of regional Queensland.

We are seeking responses from all types of businesses including agricultural businesses and would be grateful if you could complete the following brief survey. (Your best estimate is better than no response).

Confidentiality:
Responses from individual businesses are confidential and are only used to develop aggregate estimates of regional impacts.

If preferred please feel free to ring Compass Research (business hours) on 40 312 970 to complete over the telephone
or you can print the survey out here and return through the mail.

Further information:
Who for and why?
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Who for?

The Survey is being carried out for the Queensland Electricity Users Network (QEUN).

The Queensland Electricity Users Network is a network of regional Queensland electricity users including local government, Chambers of Commerce, economic development organisations, retirees, tourism operators, irrigation farmers, dairy farmers, the mining industry and urban developers.

The aim of the QEUN is to advocate for affordable and reliable electricity for business and residential customers in Queensland.

The survey is funded by Energy Consumers Australia.

Why?

The QEUN has found that there is a distinct lack of reliable information on the impact on regional businesses and jobs of the steep rises in electricity prices over the past decade. The aim of the survey is to remedy that lack of information by conducting a comprehensive survey in four regional centres in Queensland:

Businesses outside of the council areas above have shown an interest in expressing their opinion on the impact of rising power bills on their businesses. The survey has consequently been extended to include businesses in two other areas; regional Queensland and South East Queensland.

In all six areas we seek responses from all types of businesses including agricultural businesses.

It is proposed that the aggregated results from each of the six areas will be conveyed to, and the implications taken up with, the following:

About Compass Research
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About Compass Research

Compass Research is an established leading market and community research organisation based in regional Queensland. The firm has been operating from a base in Cairns since 1982.

The firm is a long standing member of the Market and Social Research Society (AMSRS) of Australia and adheres to its strict code of professional conduct.

The firm has staff with extensive experience in survey design, questionnaire design, interviewing and data analysis.

Recent clients have included the extensive social research background to the Eliminate Dengue program, Cairns Airport. The firm has carried out numerous surveys of business, including recent research into coastal shipping in Northern Australia and amongst electricity users in the Daintree area.

Any enquiries contact:
e-mail address: admin@compassresearch.net.au
Telephone: 4031 2970
Postal: PO Box 2148, Cairns, QLD, 4870
Street: 38 Grafton Street, Cairns, QLD, 4870







QA. Where does your business operate?
Mareeba Shire Council
Mt Isa City Council
Southern Downs Regional Council
Whitsunday Regional Council
Regional Queensland (Where outside of the 4 regional council areas above)
South East Queensland (Brisbane, Ipswich, Gold Coast, Lockyer Valley, Logan, Moreton Bay, Redland, Scenic Rim, Somerset, Sunshine Coast and Toowoomba)



QB. How does your business receive electricity bills?
From Ergon only
From a landlord or body-corporate
From an electricity retailer other than Ergon
From Ergon + another electricity retailer
Do not receive an electricity bill



QC. Does your business generate any of its own electricity?
e.g Solar, Diesel or Petrol generation.
Yes
No



QD. Is your business off grid?
Yes
No



Awareness



Q1. Has the cost of electricity for your business risen in the last 12 months?
Yes
No
Not sure / don't know



Q2. Has the consumption of electricity by your business changed over the last 12 months?
Risen
Fallen
Stayed about the same
Not sure / don't know



Q3. On a scale of 1 to 10, how concerned are you about the ability of your business to pay electricity bills in full and on time, with 1 being not concerned at all and 10 being extremely concerned.

Not concerned Extremely concerned




Q4a. Are you aware that electricity charges for regional Queensland businesses increased on 1st July 2016 by a further 11.2% to 15.8%?
Yes
No
Not sure / don't know



Q4b. Are you aware that electricity charges for regional Queensland businesses will increase on 1st July 2017?
Yes
No
Not sure / don't know



Own business / industry



Q5. Which of the following decisions have you made to enable your business to accommodate electricity costs over the past 12 months? Have you:
YesNo
Passed the increased cost of electricity onto your customers through higher prices for your products / services
Reduced electricity consumption through changing behaviour eg. adjusted the temperatures set for air-conditioners, heaters and hot water systems, turned off equipment and lights not in use.
Reduced electricity consumption through investment in more energy efficient appliances and equipment, eg. air-conditioners, fridges/freezers, coldrooms, irrigation pumps, lighting etc.
Invested in alternative electricity generation
Reduced staff hours or staff numbers
Accepted lower profits from the business
Increased the debt carried by the business
Other:



Q5a1. Did you pass part or the full cost of rising electricity costs onto your customers?
Partial
Full

Q5a2. What was the resulting percentage increase in prices to your customers?
Your best estimate is better than no response.
%
Don't know



Q5a3. Why didnít you pass the increased cost of electricity onto your customers?




Q5b. What alternative electricity generation have you installed since 1st of July 2016?
Solar panels
Solar hot water
Battery storage for electricity
Diesel or petrol generation
Other:



Q5c. Approximately how many staff hours per week have been reduced to accommodate rising electricity bills?
hrs per week

Q5d. Has the reduction in staff hours resulted in the loss of any full or part time jobs?
Yes
No

Q5e. How many?
Full time jobs lost
Part time jobs lost



Q6. Approximately what percentage of your total business costs is your annual electricity costs?
Your best estimate is better than no response.
%
Don't know



Q7. On a scale of 1 to 10, how satisfied are you with the electricity prices being charged to your business with 1 being very dissatisfied and 10 being very satisfied?

Very dissatisfied Very satisfied




Q8. On a scale of 1 to 10, how satisfied are you with the reliability of the electricity supply to your business with 1 being very dissatisfied and 10 being very satisfied?

Very dissatisfied Very satisfied




Q9. On a scale of 1 to 10, how much financial stress would be caused to your business if the cost of electricity increased again on 1st July 2017, with 1 being no stress and 10 being severe stress?

No stress Severe stress




Q10a. If the cost of electricity was reduced on 1st July 2017, please select which of the following would apply to your business. Multiple responses allowed.
The viability of my business would improve
I would consider employing more staff and / or increase staff hours
I would consider upgrading equipment and machinery necessary for my business
I would consider expanding my business



Q10b. If the cost of electricity increases on 1st July 2017, please select which of the following would apply to your business. Multiple responses allowed.
I would consider investing in solar generation
I would consider investing in diesel or petrol generation
I would consider investing in battery storage
I would consider reducing staff hours



Q11. Can you name any businesses (or types) in your community that are especially affected by rising electricity costs?



Demographics



Q12. What type of business do you own or manage? Please describe in a few words. (For farming businesses please specify the crop or animal which is your primary source of income).



Q13. What is the postcode of your business?



Q14. How many staff are usually employed including owners?
Full time
Part time
Casual



Q15. Is your business locally owned or a branch office?
Locally owned
Branch office



Q16. Do you rent or lease all or part of your place of business or farm?
Yes
No



Q17. What is the approximate annual gross turnover of your business:
(Annual gross turnover is the annual sales revenue)
Under $500,000
$500,000 to $1M
$1M to $5M
Over $5M



Q18. How many electricity bills for different accounts do you receive for your business monthly or quarterly?
(For example, a farm business can have different accounts e.g machinery shed, irrigation pump and home office and thus receives 3 electricity bills for the one farm business.)
No. of accounts
Monthly
Quarterly
Don't know / Not sure



Q19. What are the tariffs listed on your electricity bills? Multiple responses allowed.
Tariff 11 Tariff 22A Tariff 47
Tariff 20 Tariff 37 Tariff 48
Tariff 20 (large) Tariff 44 Tariff 62
Tariff 21 Tariff 45 Tariff 65
Tariff 22 (small) Tariff 46 Tariff 66
Tariff 22 (large) Tariff Other
Don't know / Not sure



Q20. Do any of the electricity bills received by your business include a portion for home consumption?
Yes
No
Don't know / Not sure



Q21. What is the annual power bill of your business?
Your best estimate is better than no response.
$ per year Don't know / Not sure



Q22. On a scale of 1 to 10, how much do you believe the economy of your regional community is impacted by rising business and household electricity bills, with 1 being not impacted and 10 being severely impacted?

Not impacted Severely impacted


Thank your for your time, this business survey is only for customers supplied partially or fully by grid supplied electricity. Please feel free to make comments in the box below.

Thank you for your time. We are unable to ascertain how your business pays for electricity. Please feel free to make comments in the box below.



CONFIDENTIAL
To help with any clarifications can you please provide contact details.
Business name
Contact name
Contact tel no.



If you would like to receive a copy of the Survey Report on the four regions of Mareeba, Mt Isa, Southern Downs and Whitsundays, please provide your email address.
Email



Please record any other comments regarding the impact of higher electricity bills.




Your individual comments are confidential and will only be used to develop aggregate estimates of regional impacts.

Our contact number is (07) 4031 2970.

Thank you very much for your time, your participation will help to estimate the impact of rising electricity costs on your regional community.







Compass Research | T: 61 (0)7 40 312 970
www.compassresearch.net.au | admin@compassresearch.net.au
38 Grafton St, PO. Box 2148, Cairns, QLD, 4870, abn: 99734 489 175
© 2017 Compass Research