Although Fianna Fáil have called on the Government to put money aside in October’s Budget for the water charge refunds, the exact system still hasn't been agreed on - and now it seems that some people's refunds could be reduced.
How? Well, it's being debated that people who claimed a €100 water conservation grant and received the money should have that amount deducted from their refund if they did not pay their bill.
The Irish Examiner reports that Leo Varadkar has promised that “those law-abiding citizens who paid their bills don’t end up financially worse than people who didn’t pay their bills, but still claimed the grant”.
Mr Varadkar asked his department to check with Irish Water to make sure that only people who paid their charges and received the grant will be refunded.
Over 190,000 people claimed the €100 grant but did not pay their bill, and could now see their potential €325 refund reduced.
Almost one million households in Ireland will be entitled to refunds worth a total of €162.5m.
Housing Minister Simon Coveney agreed with the idea saying: “We need to ensure that people are treated fairly, but also that the State is not paying inappropriately, either, so that is why I have always said refunds should be net of the water conservation grant.
“Even though the two were not formally or legally linked, there is clearly a link between the water conservation grant and acceptance of the water-charging system.”