Government to receive report on water charges

An independent report recommending whether to scrap or continue controversial water charges is set to be given to the Government by the end of the month — sparking a fresh crisis for the coalition.

Environment Minister Simon Coveney confirmed the situation at Fine Gael’s parliamentary party meeting last night, amid separate debate over how public sector pay strikes and senator concerns over the lack of legislation being passed through the Dáil. Speaking at the weekly meeting of government TDs and senators, Mr Coveney said the independent expert water commission report remains on schedule and is due to be handed over to him within two to three weeks.

Once this occurs, he told colleagues it will set in train a schedule that will see the Oireachtas vote on whether to scrap, retain or reduce currently frozen water charges, a move which poses serious political dilemmas for Government parties.

In the same meeting, Public Expenditure and Reform Minister Paschal Donohoe gave an update on the ongoing public sector union industrial action threats alongside Justice Minister Frances Fitzgerald and Education Minister Richard Bruton.

Mr Donohoe confirmed to the meeting that the ICTU agreed with him on Monday that any pay deals should be conducted on an across-the-board, collective basis with all unions and that further individual deals should not come in the wake of last week’s Garda Representatives Association agreement.

More on this topic

Audit found serious deficiencies in Cavan water schemeAudit found serious deficiencies in Cavan water scheme

Leak losses unacceptable 'by any measure': water advisory bodyLeak losses unacceptable 'by any measure': water advisory body

Anger at postponement of Kilcummin sewerage schemeAnger at postponement of Kilcummin sewerage scheme

Bacteria which causes kidney failure found in 62 private water suppliesBacteria which causes kidney failure found in 62 private water supplies


Liz O’Brien talks to Niall Breslin about his admiration for frontline staff, bereavement in lockdown, his new podcast, and why it's so important for us all just to slow down.Niall Breslin talks about losing his uncle to coronavirus

Podcasts are often seen as a male domain — see the joke, 'What do you call two white men talking? A podcast'.Podcast corner: Three new podcasts from Irish women that you should listen to

Esther McCarthy previews some of the Fleadh’s Irish and international offerings.How to attend the Galway Film Fleadh from the comfort of your own couch

Whether you’re on staycation or risking a trip away, Marjorie Brennan offers suggestions on novels for a wide variety of tastesThe best fiction books for the beach and beyond this summer

More From The Irish Examiner