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Dramatic drop in number of people paying water bills – Ó Broin

19 May, 2016 - by Eoin Ó Broin TD

Dramatic drop in number of people paying water bills – Eoin Ó Broin TD

Figures secured today by Sinn Féin spokesperson on Water, Eoin Ó Broin, from Irish Water via Freedom of Information have revealed a dramatic drop in the number of people paying water charges in the fourth billing quarter. The figures also show that 36% of people haven't paid any of their water charges over the last 12 months and that Irish Water have failed to collect almost 50% of their projected income from the charge.

Commenting today on figures released to him by Irish Water following an FOI request Deputy Ó Broin said:

"Unfortunately Irish Water have not provided clarity on the number of customers who paid their water charges during the fourth billing cycle. Instead they have provided cumulative figures. This is clearly an attempt to hide the dramatic drop in the number of people who have stopped paying the controversial charge.

"However we know from the fourth billing quarter figures, revealed today, that there has been a 21% drop in revenue between the third and fourth billing quarters. This clearly indicates a significant drop in the number of people paying.

“According to the information received via FOI domestic revenue due for 2015 was €271m. However actual revenue received was only €144.2m, just over half.

“This tallies with the fact that out the 1.522m people that were deemed to be  liable for water charges,  by bill cycle four, 975,000 had paid some portion of their bill, which is just over half.

“In the election last February, the majority of people votes to scrap water charges and abolish Irish Water. Over 90 TDs were elected on a mandate to scrap water charges.

"Next week Sinn Féin will use our Private Members time to table a motion signed by 39 Right 2 Water TDs to scrap Irish Water and end Water Charges. The figures released today once again highlight popular opposition to this unfair and unjust tax. The government should move to scrap it immediately."

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