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Sinn Féin Cllr Imelda Munster has called the setting up of Irish Water and the introduction of water tax as one of the biggest rip-offs we have ever seen. All of the infrastructure owned by our local councils, a priceless asset which belongs to the people of this county which taxpayers paid for over the years will now be transferred over to this new quango called Irish Water who will then put meters outside people’s homes and charge them for the privilege of using this infrastructure.
Commenting Cllr Munster said “There is no doubt that it will then be privatised down the line and people will face increased bills for water year on year, while this new private company makes millions in profit. To add insult to injury the money taxpayers paid for the Local Property Tax which we were told was to provide local services like street lighting, libraries, parks and playgrounds etc. is now being used by Junior Minister Fergus O Dowd to set up Irish Water. This will mean people will pay three times for their water. Firstly in general taxation, then through the public funds being invested in Irish Water and thirdly through water meter charges. From October this year people will be billed for their water receiving their first water bills in January in a deliberate attempt by the government to postpone posting the bills through already hard pressed taxpayers doors until after the local elections to try and save the skins of local FG / Labour government councillors”.
Cllr Munster concluded that the biggest insult of all is that from January 1st if we have a problem with our water, pipes, leaks or pressure we will now have to ring a “Call Centre in Cork” to report any problems.
The Louth TD said:“This is not the first time that someone has died following an incident in which the ambulance service was unable due to under resourcing to be able to respond speedily to the emergency. Continue reading
In a New Year message for 2014, Sinn Féin President and Louth Gerry Adams TD has called for a ‘change of political and economic direction to break the cycle of austerity, inequality, unemployment and emigration’.
Louth Sinn Féin County Councillor, Tomás Sharkey who has fought for many years to save services at Dundalk hospital, reacted angrily and said “The Services Plan for 2014 is a sick joke and offers nothing for the people of Dundalk and County Louth. Despite the fact that FG and Labour TDs and Senators gave election promises to reinstate A&E in Dundalk’s hospital, this 2014 Plan shows no sign of our services being returned.
“In fact, the government and the HSE are planning on cutting another 2,600 jobs from the health system. That means less care for patients. We have had a baby boom in recent years, 70,000 babies were born in this state in 2013. We know that we also have a large older population. The demands on the health service are getting greater but the service is being shrunk back.”
Councillor Sharkey continued, “The 2014 Plan is cutting €619 million from the health budget of last year. That is bringing it to the worst level of funding of this Austerity Emergency. No health service worker can see the merit in this plan, no patient will see a better service and no politician should stand over it.
“I am asking that politicians like Senator Mary Moran who voted against the government and their own parties in order to save their jobs in Seanad Éireann show the same radicalism in standing out in public and condemning this new round of health cuts.”
For further comment contact Cllr Sharkey at 087-9090629