herald

Friday 15 December 2017

Homeowners to submit PPS to Irish Water

IRISH water will require PPS numbers for homeowners - and all children living at home - as well as bank account details before they begin charging for water.

The first bills for water usage are due to arrive in January.

But householders will begin to receive an 'allowances application form' from September and must be completed by the end of October.

PIPED

The account holder for the new utility bill will be asked to provide full details including what type of piped water they receive and what type of sewerage facility they use.

The homeowner will be asked to provide their personal public service (PPS) number as well as numbers of any children aged 17 years or younger "who are in receipt of child benefit".

It is believed that the PPS numbers are required to identify water allowances for children in each home.

The Government announced a free allowance of 38,000 litres per year per child.

But this figure has not yet been finalised - Irish Water has applied to the Commission of Energy Regulation (CER) to have this level reduced.

The annual allocation of free water per household will be 30,000 litres, or 82 litres a day.

However, it was reported that Irish Water are pressing for the allowance to be allocated on a daily basis, with no carryover permitted, meaning that customers must effectively "use it or lose it".

The move prompted serious concerns about public health and safety from the HSE, which has told the Department of the Environment that it will impact on vulnerable families.

"Hand washing and hygiene protects against a range of infectious diseases," a HSE representative said. "Most members of the population would see that as unreasonable not to have a carryover."

The comments come after concerns were raised about the number of children who do not have PPS numbers - including those from Roma families.

payment

The final section of the form is a direct debit mandate which requires details about the international bank account number to be debited, the name of the bank and signature.

The option of a "recurrent payment" is pre-ticked.

A representative for Irish Water has confirmed that the company is still working through the communication detail with the CER. They added that it is their priority to ensure that the information being sent out is "accessible to all and meets the needs of all our customers".

hnews@herald.ie

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