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Serious questions about legality of Irish Water’s 7 year plan – Doherty

7 October, 2015 - by Pearse Doherty TD

Sinn Féin Spokesperson on Finance, Pearse Doherty TD, today criticised Irish Water's new ‘seven year plan’ and has questioned the legality of the company’s plan to borrow more than is legally permitted.

Deputy Doherty said:

“Irish Water’s proposal to invest up to €5.5 billion, including €3bn of borrowing,  in their seven year plan when they are legally limited to borrowing €2bn raises a serious question as to how they can achieve such borrowing without a change in the law.

“Something does not add up here. Section 35 of the Water Services Act no 2, very clearly puts a cap in the borrowing at Irish Water at €2bn. Yet when I asked An Taoiseach this morning in the Dáil he was very clear that no legislative change is planned. As things stand Irish Water’s plan appears to be illegal.

“Rather than spinning headlines that job losses are about savings Irish Water need to answer more fundamental questions about how their plan is even legal. 

“This is the latest financial puzzle to come out of the shambles that is Irish Water. The Eurostat destruction of the government case that this spending would be off balance means that every cent Irish Water borrows is on the backs of the Irish people. Sinn Fein will this week, in our alternative Budget, show how domestic water charges can and should be abolished.” 

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