Written Answers. - Housing Grants.

John McGuinness

Question:

131 Mr. McGuinness asked the Minister for the Environment and Local Government if he will investigate the cases of persons (details supplied) in County Wexford, all of whom have been refused a grant from his Department due to the fact that a material (details supplied) was used in the construction of their homes; if he will reconsider the decision in view of the fact that the contractor ceased using this product when he was informed by his Department and the houses concerned had already been completed; and if he will arrange an immediate investigation and payment of the grants. [22258/98]

John McGuinness

Question:

132 Mr. McGuinness asked the Minister for the Environment and Local Government the reason the use of a material (details supplied) is disallowed under his Department's house grant scheme in view of the fact that the product carries European specification and is accepted by the EU; and if he will review the decision of his Department and accept the EU guidelines on the product. [22260/98]

I would refer to my replies to Questions Nos. 577, 578 and 579 of the 30 September 1998. There is no satisfactory evidence before my Department that this material conforms to the draft harmonised European specification [pr EN 12318 — 1] of the European Standards Organisation [CEN] for polyethylene pipe. My Department has had no communication from the EU Commission expressing a reasoned opinion on the acceptability, or otherwise, of this product. Accordingly, the position in regard to the non-payment of grants for houses incorporating this material remains as set out in the reply referred to.