Irish Water At It Again



McTell

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North Korea?
 

Orbit v2

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Wasn't impressed that their website didn't work last night either. It reminds me of the ESB powercheck app. It used to work beautifully when there were no power cuts, but then crapped out whenever there was a large scale cut. What is the point of something as pointless as that?

And Fingal County Council as well had a single page of info with a pathetic low resolution un-readable map of the affected area.

Our taxes are paying for these people's salaries.
 

PBP voter

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No real surprise.

The water network hasn't had proper investment over the years.

When the next downturn happens investment with be reduced even further.

Every other European country has water charges and won't face the same problems.

 

PBP voter

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In fairness, water charges has nothing to do with this. Investment in water infrastructure could be funded out of general taxation if we wanted.
Why does no other country use this model?
 

Baron von Biffo

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No real surprise.

The water network hasn't had proper investment over the years.

When the next downturn happens investment with be reduced even further.

Every other European country has water charges and won't face the same problems.

From the rivers to the sea
Irish water shall be free.

Oh what jolly japes we had.
 

Orbit v2

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Why does no other country use this model?
As I've said before, many countries charge for water because there is a shortage of the raw material and you have to put a price on scare resources.

Yes, there is obviously a cost associated with treating water (and building infrastructure) , but that is a different thing entirely, no different from building roads, hospitals, and paying their running costs.

You have to balance the revenue would get from charges against the substantial costs of collecting them.

I accept this isn't black and white, but not once have I heard a reasoned discussion of the point beyond the rhetoric of "treated water doesnt just fall out of the sky" (as in the post above ^)
 

Finbar10

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Why does no other country use this model?
Well, most countries actually have meaningful local government. Water is actually something that mostly is quite local (group water schemes etc.). In most places in Europe it is local government or municipalities that control it (or sometimes subcontract it out). In that case, it can be easily paid for out of local taxation (or there can be specific charges). IMO it's a bit crazy to have a unified national body for water provision.

However, Irish local government unusually has no real taxation powers (apart from business rates) and gets a slice of property tax now with a marginal degree of control over the rate for that. It mostly has to depend on handouts from central government.

With proper local government, local people might complain about shoddy water infrastructure, local politicians might raise taxes specifically in response. However, no one really has any responsibility in our case. They can't raise tax. Local government has virtually no powers left now. Raising taxes usually needs the justification to be explained to a local electorate. Why bother if you can't do that anyway? Or worry about the local water supply?

And a single unified national body was easier to oppose as we saw! :) Otherwise the same battle would have needed to be fought in local authorities around the country over time. Crumbling water infrastructure v a rise in local taxes and what form those taxes should take (exemptions for the low-paid etc.). As a country, we seem to like to do everything at a national level though.
 

ShoutingIsLeadership

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No real surprise.

The water network hasn't had proper investment over the years.

When the next downturn happens investment with be reduced even further.

Every other European country has water charges and won't face the same problems.

 

Buchaill Dana

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