Motor tax funds used to prop up Irish Water as roads fill with snow and ice

TD Colm Keaveney brands situation ‘unacceptable’

The R339 through Menlough this morning. Photo:- Ultan Burke

The R339 through Menlough this morning. Photo:- Ultan Burke

Motor tax paid by Galway drivers is being used to prop up Irish Water at a time when many roads in the county have become impassable due to the recent snowfall and ice, Galway East Fianna Fáil TD Colm Keaveney, has alleged.

Last week it was revealed that Galway residents paid more than €64 million in motor tax in 2014, but that a significant amount of this has been handed over to Irish Water to help cover the highly controversial semi-State’s set-up costs. Dep Keavney believes the money being taken from the Galway County Council is coming at the expense of road maintenance in the county and explains why roads were not gritted last night despite the current spell of bad weather being forecast by Met Éireann.

Snow and icy conditions have made travelling in many parts of County Galway both dangerous and difficult today, resulting in tailbacks, delays, and at least one case of a truck jack-knifing. Schools have also faced disruption, as have many businesses with workers forced to stay at home, and deliveries have had to be cancelled.

“It is astounding to think that Galway County Council is being forced by the Government to hand over money to Irish Water,” said Dep Keaveney, “while at the same time being unable to treat the road network to make it safe to travel on. It is unacceptable. Motor tax money is spent on keeping our road network open.”

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