By Elaine Loughlin, Irish Examiner Political Reporter
Fianna Fáil have put Irish Water front and centre in a negotiation document given to Independent TDs today.
This is at odds with Fine Gael, who did see the issue of water charges as a major topic in a 122-page document issued to Independents TDs last night.
Fianna Fáil have provided a shorter document to the 15 Independent TDs still in talks on government formation, however, this is more targeted with specific time-frames for introducing measures.
The first item addressed in the 26-page document is water.
Micheál Martin’s party promise to end charges – saving families €160 per year – within six months.
They would also fully provide for the costs of winding down Irish Water and the abolition of the Water Conservation grant to save the state €110m in the first six months of government.
Within 18 months Fianna Fáil have promised to abolish Irish Water to create a “new slimmed down agency”.
Independent Alliance member Shane Ross said: “Fianna Fáil who we negotiated with yesterday presented a series of much shorter documents in response to specific requirements.
“It was more specific, less general, less of a vision there but we are expecting more documents to come back from Fianna Fáil in the days ahead if Fianna Fáil and Fine Gael met today,” Mr Ross said.