Tuesday, 27 May 2014

Questions (530)

Barry Cowen

Question:

530. Deputy Barry Cowen asked the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government if he is satisfied with the level of communication by Irish Water with local councillors; the systems that Irish Water has put in place for such communication; his views on whether Irish Water is sufficiently accountable to local authorities; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [22471/14]

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Written answers (Question to Environment)

The Water Services (No. 2) Act 2013 provides for the transfer of responsibility for the delivery of water services from the water services authorities to Irish Water. Since 1 January 2014, Irish Water is responsible for public water services and has been working in partnership with the local authorities under the Service Level Agreements.

Irish Water has put in place a dedicated support desk for elected representatives to engage directly with the company. All councillors have been contacted individually by Irish Water with details of the dedicated email address, localrepsupport@water.ie, along with the postal and telephone details for the company. Irish Water has informed my Department that all requests are acknowledged within 24 hours and that they endeavour to respond to all queries in a timely manner. As well as dealing with inbound queries on a daily basis, Irish Water keeps councillors informed on key events as they arise. In addition, a Director of Services in each local authority has been nominated as a local point of contact for information for councillors.