€108 million rise in water meter costs unacceptable - Seán Crowe TD
Dublin South West TD Seán Crowe has said that the €108 million rise in water meter costs is unacceptable and that hard pressed tax payers deserve answers to why millions of extra euro is being spent on unwanted water meters.
Deputy Crowe was speaking after it emerged at the weekend that there was a €108 million 'mark up' in water metering costs in a period of eight weeks last year. Metering costs were originally supposed to come in at around €431 million when assessed by external consultants back in May 2013 but rocketed to €539 million just a short couple of weeks later.
Deputy Seán Crowe said:
"The saga of Irish Water continues to be blight on the back of hard pressed taxpayers. They will no doubt be delighted to hear that the cost of unwanted meters has rocketed from €431 million to €539 million.
"A more serious question emerges out of this huge jump in costs. This increase of €108 million also occurred a month after the contract for water meters was awarded. Irish Water has been rightly described an unmitigated disaster with scandal after scandal emerging almost on a daily basis.
"Members of the public, many who are tax payers with shrinking pay packets, are quite rightly asking where all this is going. The Government is not producing the figures to account for this huge increase in expenditure. It is becoming increasingly evident that the Government is intent on simply giving Irish Water a blank cheque.
"Irish Water needs to be fully accountable to the Irish Parliament, with The Comptroller and Auditor General as well as the Public Accounts Committee having the right to scrutinise its accounts. Sadly Irish Water seems to be a law unto itself and lacking any oversight. €539 million is now being spent on unwanted meters.
"Irish Water is clearly not fit for purpose and needs to be wound down. Environment Minister Alan Kelly also needs to come into the Dáil again and answer more questions relating to this water 'meter millions' madness”.