Councillors to seek legal advice
Wexford County Council is to seek legal advice after a notion of motion laid down by Cllr Johnny Mythen raised a number of queries.
In the notice he said 'that data details of the tenants of Wexford County Council should only be passed onto Irish Water, when the following conditions have been met: That Wexford County Council consults with their tenants before handing over their personal information to Irish Water and will only do so with their full knowledge and consent.'
Cllr Mythen said he didn't believe that the council should be a 'debt collector' for Irish Water and said collecting arrears would put pressure on everyone.
Cllr Keith Doyle said he understood that the responsibility for unpaid water rates from tenants lay with the landlord and he said Wexford County Council act as landlord for local authority tenants.
Cllr Paddy Kavanagh said he would like to know the legal position from the council's point of view.
'This whole think is a complete farce', said Cllr Davy Hynes 'and it should be scrapped'.
'It's a case of people wanting everything and want to pay for nothing', said Cllr Robbie Ireton.
Cllr Michael Sheehan said he didn't 'want to expose the council to any liability' and Cllr Michael Whelan said the matter needed to be clarified from a legal standpoint.
The actual legal standing of any decision taken was questioned by Cllr James Browne. 'Has this any legal binding on the executive. Al this is coming from national legislation and I don't think it will have any legal binding because the executive is bound by national legislation.'
CEO of Wexford County Council Tom Enright said he had been looking into the matter and said it was a 'matter of grave concern' to the council 'if we ended up footing a bill' especially in respect of vacated properties.
'I see no difficulty with you passing this but the implementation will depend on national legislation'. In the end the members decided to get legal advice and the motion was deferred.