Government candidates in the local elections must “come clean” about the expected costs water charges will impos to householders.
This is the demand of the Anti Austerity Alliance which is running three candidates in Galway for May’s local elections - Tommy Holohan (Galway City West ), Sean Byrne (Galway City Central ), and Conor Burke (Galway City East ).
According to the AAA, various figures are being stated by different organisations that range between €370 to €500 per year per household.
“This is on top of the money we already pay for water through central taxation,” said Conor Burke. “The Government is clearly holding back on giving an accurate assessment of what the burden will be for households until after the local elections as they know it would have a significantly negative impact on their election hopes.”
Mr Burke said that despite Government claims that the economy “is on the road to recovery”, austerity has seen a 20 per cent increase of people dropping below the poverty line and an increase in the number of unemployed.
“Adding this extra austerity tax on to people is downright sadistic,” he said. “Rather than blowing up to €540 million installing meters and countless more setting up Irish Water, this money should be used to fix the network instead. So why isn’t the Government focusing on this side of the problem instead of hoisting yet another tax on people who can’t afford it?”