The latest twist in the water metering fiasco confirms that the Government has no clear strategy on water services reform, according to Fianna Fáil Environment Spokesperson Niall Collins.
Deputy Collins has described as ‘very significant’ reports today that another entirely new charging structure may be required for up to a third of homes that are not suitable for installing water meters.
“As each days passes, it becomes harder to escape the conclusion that Phil Hogan is just making this up as he goes along,” said Deputy Collins. “The fiasco began last week with mixed messages from the highest levels of Government about the cost to homes of fitting water meters. On Tuesday, the Government announced its policy on water services reform based on universal water metering, and Minister Hogan pledged to install meters to 95% of homes by 2014. Today we learn that up to a third of homes may not be suitable for meters and a whole new flat-rate charging structure will be required.
“This is descending into a farce. The scheme that he announced just days ago, without any sound rationale, is already riddled with problems and neither Minister Hogan nor the Taoiseach can provide clear answers to even the most basic of questions.
“Given the mess that has been made to date on this issue, the Minister needs to step back, publish the full business case relating to water reform and universal metering, and allow full public debate before proceeding further or incurring more cost.”