The Workers Party have described the announcement by Environment Minister Phil Hogan that the registration fee for Septic
Tank Inspection is to be reduced to €5 if paid within the first three months of the scheme as an embarrassing climb-down
and a victory for those campaigning against the fees.
Meath West Workers Party Chairman Seamus McDonagh said that the minister’s about-face was a sign that the government’s
plans for this and other new charges were in disarray and it was only a matter of time before the minister would have to face
further face-saving action in relation to the Household Charges.
“This is a clear sign”, said Mr. McDonagh, “that the government is on the run from ordinary householders
around the country. The minister was clearly rattled when interviewed on television
after his announcement. For weeks now he and his colleagues have been on the
receiving end of the wrath of hardworking taxpayers who see this charge as merely another attempt to claw money from their
pockets. It is just another tax masquerading as an environmental measure”.
“The Septic Tank fee and
the Household Charge are probably among the most unpopular taxes ever introduced by an Irish government. They are grossly unfair and inequitable and do not take account of people’s ability to pay, they
are merely another revenue raising method to pay for the banking bailout. In the case of the septic tank fee the government
is making householders pay for the failure of successive governments to introduce proper standards in this area. Minister Hogan now has egg on his face with this u-turn, he will need to steel himself for further climb-down’s
because the tens of thousands of people around the country who have been flocking to meetings are not going to go away”,
said Seamus McDonagh
Issued 6th February 2012