Irish Water’s new non-domestic tariff framework for business customers is to be deferred as a result of the current Covid-19 emergency.
The new framework which supports a new national set of charges was due to come into effect on 1 May 2020, with customers due to receive communications about these changes in the coming weeks.
This decision has been taken by Irish Water with the support of our economic regulator, the Commission for Regulation of Utilities (CRU), and the Department of Housing, Planning and Local Government.
Head of Customer Operations, Yvonne Harris said, “With significant uncertainty facing businesses and enterprises at the present time, it was agreed that the introduction of the new framework and national set of charges should be deferred. The situation is to be reviewed in the coming months in light of emerging developments with Covid-19.”
She added, “We will ensure we keep businesses and their representative groups up to date as the situation develops. In the interim, we will continue to use the existing charges and work with businesses who have been impacted by the Covid-19 emergency.”
The new non-domestic tariff framework for Irish Water was approved by the CRU, and published in July 2019.
It will apply to over 183,000 water and wastewater connections for circa 164,000 customers from the business, industrial and agricultural sectors, as well as to public bodies, charities, and social enterprises.
It will ultimately replace the 500 different water and wastewater tariffs billed in 44 separate areas across the country which were in place before Irish Water took over responsibility for water services from local authorities in 2014 and continue to apply today.
In drawing up proposals for harmonised business charges, Irish Water used six guiding principles set by the CRU: equity and no undue discrimination; efficiency in the use of water services; cost reflectivity; cost recovery; stability; and simplicity.
Irish Water’s proposals, based on these principles, were submitted to the CRU and published for consultation in June 2018.
The new charges and tariff framework reflects amendments to Irish Water’s original proposals following two public consultations and consideration of the feedback received from businesses and a range of stakeholders, including representatives groups from the business and farming sectors, and was published in June 2019.
Irish Water is encouraging businesses to still visit www.water.ie where they can assess the impact of the new charges on their bill using our online calculator tool and case studies.
Further information including detailed Q&A is also available online or by visiting www.cru.ie.
Customers who may be experiencing billing or payment difficulties can contact our dedicated business team on 1850 778 778.