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WATER SOLUTION? — 2 Comments

  1. There is a precident in the UK for this. The Dartford River Crossing was built with private money on the understanding that once the bill was paid, the tolls would be removed. A foreign company came along and bought the Crossing; now we're stuck with the tolls forever. They seem to be rising quite quickly, too.

    I don't believe that your politicians are any more honest or trustworthy than those over here. Let them put a "temporary" tax in place and you'll never see the back of it. It will be just another way to raise cash – no way the money will be effectively ring-fenced.

    As you say, you're already paying for your water. That means that a larger population leads to higher revenue, which should cover the costs of maintaining, upgrading and expanding the system. If it doesn't then they are either paying too much for the upgrades, or they are not charging enough. I know which of those two I'd bet on….

    • Mick,

      There is no doubt in my mind that our snake-like Irish Government, no matter who is in power, have an eye on selling a big State asset, to enrich themselves somehow. No-one will buy a water utility unless there is an established income stream, that can be ramped up through unit price increases. That is how the multi-nationals cost their business models after all. The projected income stream will determine the buy price initially.

      My suggested solution is practical and sensible because it recognizes that mistakes have been made in the past, with possible under-investment for example, and we are stuck with this shit now. The multiple fuckers who caused the problem are probably un-sue-able so lets swallow it no matter how unpalatable and progress. There are only a few small pockets in Ireland where the water from the mains is undrinkable however, if not addressed, more of these will come along. It is a small country but in its context, there is a massive one-off engineering project to complete that will forever take water off the national agenda.

      But our opposition to a water charge has drawn a line in the sand for future Governments. Have no doubt that over the last several years we have been threatened individually for non-payment and yet we’ve been defiant. Finally the blustering bullies caved in because their careers in politics are more important to them than the good of the country long term. So my suggestion is for a delicate compromise that might help this country in the future, long after I’m dead. My suspicion is that water, as a state cost, was factored into general taxation long ago and forgotten because it was never a political issue. Then the EU came along and told our lackeys to charge for water separately and hey presto, water was an issue.

      But when water was added to taxation way back when there were under three million people in the Republic. Now there are four and half million of us and no one aspect of general taxation has ever been increased in my lifetime to pay for water. Indeed, the annual road tax revenue is currently paying for company they call Irish Water.

      So something has to give!

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