Header Item Water Services (No. 2) Bill 2013: Committee Stage (Resumed) (Continued)
 Header Item Business of Seanad
 Header Item Water Services (No. 2) Bill 2013: Committee Stage (Resumed)

Thursday, 12 December 2013

Seanad Éireann Debate
Vol. 228 No. 6

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  Progress reported; Committee to sit again.

Business of Seanad

Senator Maurice Cummins: Information on Maurice Cummins Zoom on Maurice Cummins I propose an amendment to the Order of Business that rather than conclude this Bill at 6 p.m., the debate will resume on Monday, 16 December.

An Cathaoirleach: Information on Paddy Burke Zoom on Paddy Burke Is that agreed? Agreed.

Water Services (No. 2) Bill 2013: Committee Stage (Resumed)

NEW SECTION

  Government amendment No. 38:

In page 13, between lines 26 and 27, to insert the following:
“Agreement in relation to water charges
18. (1) Irish Water may make an agreement with a customer for the charging of that customer for the provision of water services.
(2) An agreement under this section may include provision for—
(a) a method of calculation of charges under section 16 in respect of the customer concerned that is different from that applicable to customers to whom an approved water charges plan applies, and
(b) the application of rates of charge under that section in respect of the customer concerned that are different from those that apply to customers to whom an approved water charges plan applies.
(3) Irish Water shall submit an agreement made under this section to the Commission and the Commission shall, as soon as practicable thereafter—
(a) approve the agreement, or
(b) refuse to approve the agreement.”.

  Amendment put and declared carried.

  Question, "That section 18 stand part of the Bill," put and declared carried.

  Question, "That section 19 stand part of the Bill," put and declared carried.

SECTION 20

Senator Sean D. Barrett: Information on Sean D. Barrett Zoom on Sean D. Barrett I move amendment No. 39:

In page 14, line 17, to delete “Minister for Communications, Energy and Natural Resources” and substitute “National Consumer Agency and the Competition Authority”.

  Question, "That the words proposed to be deleted stand," put and declared carried.

  Amendment declared lost.

  Question proposed: "That section 20 stand part of the Bill."

Senator Sean D. Barrett: Information on Sean D. Barrett Zoom on Sean D. Barrett Section 20 states:

(1) The Minister may give a direction in writing to Irish Water, in relation to the performance by Irish Water of its functions under this Act, requiring it to comply with such policies of the Government as are specified in the direction.
(2) The Minister may, by direction in writing, amend or revoke a direction under this section (including a direction under this subsection).
(3) The Minister shall not give a direction under this section without first consulting the Minister for Communications, Energy and Natural Resources.
(4) Irish Water shall comply with a direction given to it under this section.

As always in these matters, the consumer is weak and the producer is strong. The other day I read the record of regulatory capture pointed to by eminent Nobel economics laureates. To protect the consumer we have a regulator.


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