Council to transfer tenant information to Irish Water

Councillors have branded as “despicable” the news that Westmeath County Council will be required to hand over the names and addresses of its tenants to Irish Water.

Westmeath County Council has confirmed that it will have to comply with legislation in transferring the names and addresses of its tenants to Irish Water, when asked, though it has not handed over any information yet.

Cllr Paul Hogan raised the issue at Monday’s council meeting, saying he had “huge concern” over the potential transfer of the names and addresses of council tenants, as he felt it would be “in breach of data protection”.

“To forward this information without checking with tenants is a despicable way of treating tenants,” he said.

However chief executive of Westmeath County Council, Pat Gallagher, said the Data Protection Commissioner had confirmed that the request for information from local authorities was consistent with data protection legislation.

“Irish Water will be in further communication with us to arrange for the transfer of this information,” he added.

Cllr Mick Dollard said the council should inform tenants, as a matter of courtesy, that their information was to be provided to a third party.

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