Fine Gael TD for Laois/Offaly, Marcella Corcoran Kennedy, has called on Sinn Fein and in particular its Environment Spokesperson, Brian Stanley, to stop misleading people on the issue of water charges. Deputy Corcoran Kennedy also welcomed confirmation that the average annual charge per household will not exceed €240.
“I was disappointed to hear Sinn Fein’s Environment Spokesperson, Brian Stanley claim on the News at One today that the free allowance for children was plucked out of the air when it is in clearly based on the latest research.
“I call on Sinn Fein and the opposition not to scaremonger and misinform people on this vital consumer issue. As public representatives we have a responsibility to ensure that we stick to the facts on key issues such as the provision of water.
“The creation of Irish Water is a direct effort to fix our water system which was neglected during the previous decade despite the massive surplus enjoyed by the then government.
“I welcome the confirmation that the average annual charge for water per household will not exceed €240 as the Taoiseach previously outlined. And I particularly welcome that water provision for children will be free. I support today’s recommendation that each house serving as a primary residence will be provided with a free allowance of 30,000 litres per annum.
“I fully understand the frustration that some will have at having to pay for water. The six years since the collapse of the economy has been extremely challenging for families and individuals around the country. However I welcome the fact that charges will be capped for people with high water usage due to certain medical conditions and that those who receive the Household Benefits Package will receive €100 per year towards paying their water charges.
“Forty per cent of our water currently goes to waste as a result of leakages in our antiquated pipes. Water charges will help fix our water system and in doing so make it economically and environmentally sustainable in the long run.”