FWC represents the interest of its members in facilitating fairness in the way that competitive water connections are offered FWC is a not-for-profit organisation which draws on volunteered time so that it can support worldwide provision of safe water services  

Fair Water Connections

Seeking a fair deal in water supply provision

About Fair Water Connections

Fair Water Connections (FWC) is an association which provides support to Self-Lay Providers.  These are independent connection providers, operating across England and Wales, who offer an alternative new water supply provision option to developers (rather than getting their new water mains and services laid by the incumbent water company). Because of a number of factors self-lay take-up varies across water company regions.  But FWC lobbying, and the support it provides to members, is changing the situation and helping to establish a more level playing field for water connection competition. More Self-lay Providers (SLPs) are encouraged to join. They will benefit from updates and information about what is happening in water connections competition and advice to assist them in their dealings with developers and water companies.  It will also help us increase our pressure on water companies, and on Ofwat (the sector regulator), to address the issues which continue to constrain self-lay competition. Latest Updates 1. Water companies (acting throught their Water UK trade body) has issued to Ofwat, for their approval, a suite of proposals aimed at setting a standardised framework for self-lay provision. Although our lobbying has resulted in some changes to the drafts proposals we do not regard what has been presented as passing a ‘fair and balanced’ test.  So we now wait to see what Ofwat does.  Our hope being that they recognise the non-compliance we can see against their Code and initiate their own consultation. The proposals are available to view on the Water UK Website - [Link] Download our full commentary on the proposed new water adoption framework. 2. English water companies can now set their own water connection (mains and service) charges in accordance with Ofwat Rules. Although the local charges are supposed to be more transparent and set after customer engagement the cross company differences, and some of the rates/allowances, continue to cause us alarm.  Hence we continue to lobby Ofwat, and companies, about these and have started referring charging disputes ourselves to Ofwat. 3. Ofwat is developing a new Developer Services Customer Experience Tool (known as D-MeX) which will either reward companies (with up to 2.5% of their Developer Services turnover) or penalise them (at up to 5% of turnover).  We are working to ensure that the mechanism Ofwat puts in place drives behaviour change towards self-lay. Find out more about FWC by looking through these pages. Please contact us if you would like more information or sense that FWC membership would better equip you to operate in the competitive water connections market. FWC has been set-up as a not-for-profit organisation which draws on volunteered time. This enables FWC to financially support charities, such as Pump Aid, who work internationally to give communities fairer access to safe water and sanitation.  Over the last 5 years FWC has funded supplies to 15 villages in rural Malawi.

Membership

Fair Water Connections (FWC) is a membership association open to individuals and organisations. FWC offers a range of membership types. The main categories are:- Full Member,    and Enhanced Member All members receive general information and updates covering competitive water connections work. Full/enhanced members can attend briefings, input into consultations and to prioritise the work of FWC. Also Follow FWC comments on Twitter

Help and Advice

Advice available to Fair Water Connections members covers: Legislative provision Contestable and Non- contestable Works Equivalence - water company v competitive provision Cost apportionment and phasing Service connections Surety requirements Allowable charges Basis for disputing unfair terms and condition FWC members are also provided with assistance, on a site specific basis, to challenge concerns they have about imposed terms and conditions. Follow link for more about available help and advice.

News and Updates

There is much currently happening which impacts on self-lay provision. (English) companies should have on their website all the forms, information, etc. SLPs need. (English) companies need to provide “appropriate redress” when they fail to achieve minimum service levels. Consultation on updating the arrangements applying to ‘Welsh’ companies have started. FWC is working for the water self-lay community on all of these. Follow the News and Update link  for more about what FWC has  been doing and other water  self-lay related news.
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