Friday 19 January 2018

Water under the bridge?

By David Tucker

Anti-water charges protesters march past the Crescent on Saturday
Anti-water charges protesters march past the Crescent on Saturday

EIGHTY per cent of County Wexford households have signed up for water charges, one of the highest registration figures in the country.

This translates to 42,384 households registering out of 52,747 in the county, according to figures quoted in the national media, although local water protesters said they found the figures hard to believe.

According to the reports, neighbouring County Wicklow stands at 71 per cent. The highest, in County Cavan stands at 91 per cent, while the lowest, Leitrim is only 57 per cent.

Up to 100 protesters from the anti-water alliance marched through Wexford town on Saturday ahead of a ceremonial 'binning of the bills.' The protest was organised by Cllr. Deirdre Wadding from the People Before Profit Alliance and other groups. She conceded the protest was smaller than those held several months ago, but the main focus was 'not paying the bills and getting enough solidarity on that'.

Asked to comment on the water bill registration figures being quoted nationally, Cllr. Wadding said she believed there could be discrepancies as people who had sent back their bills saying they did not intend to pay, may be counted as registered because they had been issued with bills.

A number of water bills were 'binned' by a smaller group of about 25 Wexford protesters at the end of Saturday's march.

'We need to hold out. There are no penalties currently in force for not paying the bills,' said Cllr. Wadding She said meanwhile that People Before Profit, the Right to Water group and other smaller groups were coming together at a newly-establised people's support centre in Mary's Lane, Wexford, to offer support and voice on a range of issues.

Wexford People

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