Water referendum must 'not be rushed', says Eoghan Murphy

Water referendum must 'not be rushed', says Eoghan Murphy

Housing Minister Eoghan Murphy has insisted that the government will still to hold a referendum on whether water should be protected in public ownership but the vote must “not be rushed”.

The minister told the Dail this morning that wording for the referendum was still being worked on by the Attorney General among others, before it is debated with the Opposition in the Dail.

Fianna Fail's Darragh O'Brien pushed Mr Murphy to commit to when the vote could be held and when details around it and the transfer of water assets from local authorities to Irish Water would be completed.

Mr Murphy said that the government had decided against having the vote in May because of the need to get language right over the contentious issue of group and private water schemes.

The decision to postpone the referendum has been viewed by Opposition TDs as a way to avoid any further controversy or backlash over water in the lead up to the May local and European elections.

Meanwhile, Mr Murphy also said regulations for affordable housing and rent schemes were being finalised.

Up to 29,000 such homes are planned and applicants with an income under €50,000 or a joint income of 75,000 can apply, the minister told the Dail this morning.

Sinn Fein's Eoin O'Broin said rents should be set for the properties and local authorities required to meet targets for affordable homes.

Mr Murphy said, once schemes are up and running, that overall targets would be set in a similar way to social housing.

More on this topic

Book reveals former finance minister opposed water meters but was overruled by Enda KennyBook reveals former finance minister opposed water meters but was overruled by Enda Kenny

Government accused of delaying potential referendum on public ownership of waterGovernment accused of delaying potential referendum on public ownership of water

C&AG remit may cover water - Vote neededC&AG remit may cover water - Vote needed

New water charging system described as 'thin edge of the wedge'New water charging system described as 'thin edge of the wedge'


More in this Section

Man charged over ATM thefts in Co AntrimMan charged over ATM thefts in Co Antrim

589 people are waiting on trolleys589 people are waiting on trolleys

Sports minister open to 'constructive suggestions' over possible FAI splitSports minister open to 'constructive suggestions' over possible FAI split

Three arrested in connection with Lucan murderThree arrested in connection with Lucan murder


Lifestyle

For wine-lovers, a tour of the Rioja region of northern Spain is like a visit to your very own fairytale — but with added wine, writes Anna O’DonoghueSip sip hooray in the capital of Spanish wine Spain’s wine capital

Sorting out Cork people for agesAsk Audrey: Being nice to poor kids is everything that is wrong about Christmas

Ever wondered if liqueurs or drink-laced Christmas puddings might put you over the drink-driving limit? Pat Fitzpatrick picks up a breathalyser and puts six sweet treats to the testDo these boozy treats put you over the drink-driving limit?

Kya deLongchamps investigates the history behind the mythCan you really be arrested for eating a mince pie on Christmas Day in Britain?

More From The Irish Examiner