herald

Friday 9 December 2016

Irish Water starts sending bills to 1.5 million customers

Elizabeth Arnett, Head of Communications and Corporate Services with Irish Water, said bills will be processed over the coming eight weeks
Elizabeth Arnett, Head of Communications and Corporate Services with Irish Water, said bills will be processed over the coming eight weeks

Irish Water has confirmed it has started to post bills out to more than 1.5 million customers.

Householders are expected to start receiving the controversial bills from tomorrow as billing for domestic water services is rolled-out nationwide.

Irish Water said it is been preparing to issue the first batch of quarterly bills to 1.5 million customers.

It is also boosting the number of customer service agents at its site in Abtran, Co Cork, to 750 to address any queries customers have over the coming weeks as billing rolls out on a phased basis.

Elizabeth Arnett, Head of Communications and Corporate Services with Irish Water, said bills will be processed over the coming eight weeks

“It’s a significant task and we expect to face challenges, particularly, for example, when we have incomplete customer information or unregistered customers,” she said.

“In these cases we may not have the right billing details and it’s possible that the details we have may not be 100pc correct.

“Having said that, our billing systems are working well and our contact center staff are ready to correct any data inaccuracies quickly.

“They are on-hand to answer any questions or concerns customers have.”

Irish Water said a  total of 1.7m bills will be issued - including to those who are not customers, such as those on Group water schemes – whether they are metered or unmetered.

Charges for the first bill will be €40 (or less) for a single adult household and €65 (or less) for a two adult household. Some households with a meter can beat this cap and pay even less, it said.

It called on customers to register with Irish Water before 30th June to ensure they are eligible to apply for the Government’s Water Conservation Grant, which will be available in September from the Department of Social Protection.

“No bill will be greater than €160 per year for single adult households or €260 per year for households with more than one adult,” it added.

“It will take eight weeks to issue all bills in the first cycle so bills will arrive between April and June.  Any customer who hasn’t received a bill by June should contact the Irish Water Customer Contact Centre.”

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