Deputy Bannon wants clarity on water charges

Longford/Westmeath Fine Gael Deputy James Bannon has expressed his annoyance at the response from the Department of the Environment on the value for money taxpayers can expect from the installation of water meters.

Longford/Westmeath Fine Gael Deputy James Bannon has expressed his annoyance at the response from the Department of the Environment on the value for money taxpayers can expect from the installation of water meters.

Deputy Bannon tabled a parliamentary question last Tuesday on the subject and instead of a direct response was referred to previous replies to other questions, which primarily related to the issue of Bord Gais and Water Ireland.

“Being conscious of the huge loss to the country and the taxpayer of the infamous e-voting machines, which were obsolete prior to purchase by the department, and incurred a staggering cost of €55 million in total, I was seeking clarification on the viability of the proposed water meters.

“It is essential that there is no repeat of previous errors and that the water meters, which are going to be a considerable ‘drain’ on the resources of hard-hit citizens, will not be aquatic dinosaurs,” Deputy Bannon said.

“As a public representative, it is my job to protect the taxpayer from waste of his/her hard earned income, especially in the current economic crisis. I wanted a specific response to a specific question.

“It is not good enough to avoid providing assurances and safeguards to the public. That was what my parliamentary question was intended to elicit. That is what I did not get,” the Fine Gael TD remarked.