SIGN THE PETITION NOW: https://goo.gl/Ai1pDe
On Tuesday or Wednesday of next week, the Joint Committee on Water will vote on whether they recommend water charges for “excessive use.” This will be a Trojan Horse for bringing in full water charges at a later date.
So far 10 members of the 20 person water committee have committed to scrapping water charges and ending the domestic metering process. If one more member abstains or votes to scrap the charges, the Dail will be instructed to end metering and end water charges for good.
We’re asking people to contact two members of the Committee who may support our position.
Senator Grace O’Sullivan of the Civic Engagement Group and Deputy Noel Grealish, Independent TD for Galway West.
We must convince these members to vote to scrap water charges:
1. If metered charges continue, eventually allowances will be reduced and full water charges will be introduced in time – meaning Ireland would have water poverty for the first time in our history.
2. Irish people are not wasteful with their water. In fact, we use less water than almost any other country in the EU consuming 25% less water than countries like the UK where they’ve had metered charges for almost 30 years.
3. There is a real problem with leaks in the system but only 3% of leaks come from the household side of the infrastructure. Funding should be directed to the public side where 97% of water is being leaked and also to district metering which could identify leaks.
4. A metering process for ‘excessive use’ makes no economic sense. Firstly, the ‘expert commission’ on water said there is no identifiable excessive use and using their formula for charging for excessive use would mean spending up to €300 million on a metering programme for a return of €27 million. This is a waste of valuable taxpayers money and would divert money from upgrading the real infrastructural problems.
5. The real agenda behind water charges is privatisation. Should the metering process continue, there is no doubt that our water would be privatised in the future.
6. Article 1.9 of the CETA international trade agreement could provide for the privatisation of our water in the future and having meters in place would facilitate this.
7. Two thirds of the Irish public voted for politicians who declared opposition to water charges. This is backed up by the Irish Times MRBI poll which shows that 64% of the population want the charges scrapped while only 34% want them continued. It is time to do the democratic will of the Irish electorate.
For these reasons and more water charges must be abolished.
We need you to contact Senator Grace O’Sullivan and Deputy Noel Grealish and demand they abstain or vote to end water charges for good.
As Senator Grace O’Sullivan is representing the Civic Engagement Group on the Water Committee, it is important that we tell the other members of the Committee to support our call. The full Civic Engagement Group includes:
Alice Mary Higgins – email@example.com<mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org>
Collette Kelleher – Colette.email@example.com<mailto:Colette.firstname.lastname@example.org>
Frances Black – email@example.com<mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org>
Lynn Ruane – email@example.com<mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org>
John Dolan – email@example.com<mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org>
Please sign this petition and share with everyone you know. We only have days to protect our human right to water and prevent privatisation and future water poverty.
I was present at the founding meeting of the Right2Water campaign in 2014 in Leinster House and I was present again today in Leinster House at the Oireachtas Water Committee meeting when it became clear that a majority of members are now in favour of abolishing these water charges and are also opposed to any charge for so called “excessive use” of water.
Hundreds of thousands of ordinary Irish people took to the streets to defeat this unfair double taxation.
While it’s early days yet, your opposition to these charges, your protest, your opposition to meter installation, your non-payment campaign has put us on the verge of an historic victory.
But beware, “there’s many a slip between the cup and the lip” and we must remain vigilant.
Keep up the good work.
PEOPLE POWER WORKS!
Seamus Healy TD – 0872802199
Speaking at Leaders Questions in the Dáil on 21st Feb Deputy Healy said
“All citizens have a right to a satisfactory and good-quality public transport service. It is the duty of the State to ensure that such a service is provided. It cannot and must not be left to market forces.
Members of the public in my Tipperary constituency and in rural areas generally are entitled to the same standard of public transport as the constituents of the Minister, Deputy Ross, here in Dublin.
Yesterday, Bus Éireann proposed the closure of the Clonmel to Dublin bus service among others. This is absolutely unacceptable and will not be tolerated.
Of course, it comes on the back of the closure of the Carrick-on-Suir to Dublin bus service in 2015. It comes on the back of the proposed closure of the Limerick to Waterford rail service and the Limerick to Ballybrophy rail service. The Limerick to Waterford rail line servicing Carrick-on-Suir, Clonmel, Cahir and Tipperary town is being undermined on a daily basis by management regularly and frequently cancelling trains on that line. In addition, the main social and economic corridor across the south of the county, the N24, has been left out of the road capital programme, which is particularly damaging to the Tipperary town and Carrick-on-Suir. Of course, the failure to build the Thurles bypass, which has been overlooked for years, resulting in chaos in the square, turning it into a car park.
County Tipperary is not getting a fair crack of the whip.
A Fine Gael led Government already abolished Clonmel Borough Council and the town councils in Carrick-on-Suir, Cashel, Tipperary town, Thurles, Templemore and Nenagh. A Fine Gael led Government with the help of the Labour Party also closed the St. Michael’s 50 bed psychiatric unit at South Tipperary General Hospital. Now north Tipperary patients must travel to Ennis and south Tipperary patients must travel to Kilkenny to avail of a service that is inadequate and substandard.
The abandonment of County Tipperary must stop.
I am asking the Taoiseach if he will give an assurance to stop any threat to the Clonmel to Dublin bus service. Will he give an assurance to re-establish the Carrick-on-Suir to Dublin bus service? After 20 years of waiting, will the Taoiseach give the go-ahead for the N24 upgrading, including the bypass of Tipperary town, Clonmel and Carrick-on-Suir? Also after 20 years, will the Taoiseach give the go-ahead for the bypass of Thurles this afternoon?
We have been waiting for 20 years for both the N24 upgrade and the Thurles bypass. The Taoiseach’s Government and the previous Government starved public transport and road budgets. The road budgets fell between 2007 and 2015 by €1.722 billion. The State subvention to CIE was slashed by €132 million, from €321 million in 2008 to €189 million in 2015. The State subvention to Bus Éireann is down €16.3 million from €49.4 million to €33.1 million. The free travel contribution from the Department of Social Protection is completely inadequate. It has been capped for years despite increased numbers and the fact that 30% of Bus Éireann’s passengers are availing of free travel.
In June 2016, the Taoiseach wrote to the President of the European Commission, Jean-Claude Juncker, seeking permission to borrow money for infrastructural works. He said at the time that investment in infrastructure in Ireland was “at its lowest level for many years, and also represents the lowest level of any member state at present”. He got no reply, or none that we heard of.
Italy recently told President Juncker it will borrow money with or without his permission.
I ask the Taoiseach to do likewise. Will he reassert Irish sovereignty and put the right of the Irish people to proper transport infrastructure, and other capital investment such as housing, before the EU and EU diktats.”
Seamus Healy T.D. 22/2/2017
Tel: 087 2802199