National Federation of Group Water Schemes

Equity & Fairness Secured in Revised Group Water Scheme Operational Subsidy

The National Federation of Group Water Schemes (NFGWS) warmly welcomes today’s
announcement by Minister Eoghan Murphy, TD of increased financial support towards the
operation of group water schemes.

These increases – agreed in the course of negotiations between the NFGWS and senior
officials in the Minister’s Department – fully meet the requirement for equity and fairness
demanded by the GWS sector and recommended by the Joint Oireachtas Committee on the
Future Funding of Water Services. They are based on real data, confirming that this level of
supports will meet the financial cost of supplying domestic connections on group water
schemes with a safe and wholesome drinking water supply and without cost to the
householder.

On Wednesday last, the package agreed with the Minister and his Department was approved
by the NFGWS Board and its decision received the unanimous endorsement of GWS
Federation representatives at a Special Delegate Conference organised by the NFGWS later
that evening.

As the changes come into effect from 1st January, we would urge group water scheme
organisers to meet with their members without undue delay and to agree with them the
changes that will be required in light of the new subsidy arrangements. In particular, group
schemes should move to remove any ‘flat rate’ charge on domestic connections and to
provide an allocation of ‘free’ water for the year ahead that will fully meet the needs of GWS
domestic connections.