Michael Fitzmaurice TD has reiterated his belief that people who paid Water charges should be refunded and that Group Water Scheme subvention be increased.
Commenting on the issue Michael Fitzmaurice said “There has been a lot of speculation and talk over the past week about what should be done about people who have paid their water charges and I have said on a consistent basis for the past six months that the people who paid have to get their money back.”
Deputy Fitzmaurice went on to say “It would be totally unrealistic economically to pursue those who didn’t pay, and to hire people to try to retrieve that money would not be viable. In giving the money back to those who paid, there could be a 10% bonus if the money is given back in a tax credit say, over a two year period. Budget constraints may dictate that this money might not be able to be repaid in one year but if it is done over a period of time then why not pay a bonus as a gesture of goodwill”.
Group Water Schemes
Michael Fitzmaurice has also called for the subvention to Group Water Schemes to be restored to previous levels. “With regard to the Group Water Schemes there is confusion around the country now. The Department dropped the subvention by €55 per house. This year all the Group Water Schemes are getting now is €110 per house which is nothing near what it was originally. If we want to treat everyone fairly throughout the country then payments to Group Water Schemes must be brought up to, and past what they were.”
Deputy Fitzmaurice added “Remember too that sewage is also going to be free to those on the public supply as well and we have to remember that people who live in rural areas and who use septic tanks have to have them de-sludged every few years and the Government must take that into account as well” he concluded.