Thursday, 20 October 2016
Department of Housing, Planning, Community and Local Government
Water Meters Expenditure
137. To ask the Minister for Housing, Planning, Community and Local Government the total underspend on phase 1 of the water metering programme to date; the estimated final underspend; if this underspend can be or has been re-allocated to other capital projects; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [31451/16]
Since 1 January 2014, Irish Water has statutory responsibility for all aspects of water services planning, delivery and operation at national, regional and local levels. This includes the domestic water metering programme. The domestic metering contracts, awarded in 2013, had the objective of installing 1,050,000 domestic meters over a 3 year programme, which started in August of that year, supported by a budget of €614m including VAT. I understand from Irish Water that the expected capital expenditure under the programme will amount to €465m, which will deliver 880,000 meter installations on completion. As such, savings of about €148m will accrue on the capital metering programme. Up to 170,000 meters included in the original programme will not be metered at this stage, for a combination of health and safety reasons, service complexity or other technical reasons.
Future metering of domestic premises will be considered along with other investment needs based on cost benefit assessment and policy considerations relating to the future decisions on billing and charging. Decisions on such investments will be made under the regulatory regime whereby the Commission for Energy Regulation approves the Water Services Capital Investment Programmes.