Septic tank bill ‘totally unfair’ for rural areas

An Inishowen TD says the proposed septic tank bill is totally “unfair” towards people who live in rural communities.

Speaking after a packed meeting in the Lake of Shadows Hotel in Buncrana last Friday night Deputy Charlie McConalogue said the bill was completely unacceptable.

“We regard it as totally unfair that people who live in towns and cities have their sewerage systems funded by the state while those living in the countryside have to cover the cost of upgrading works themselves.

“This proposal will be fought at every turn, and it will be a tough campaign but we need to ensure that common sense prevails in the end,” he said.

Deputy McConalogue believes there is no rationale in upgrading septic tanks which have been installed over the years to meet modern day standards and he maintains any attempt to do this would be unjust on people and cause an extra financial burden.

‘Left alone’

“We decided at Friday night’s meeting that the Minister Phil Hogan needs to write into the legalisation that tanks which are in good working order and doing the job they are supposed to do should be left alone.

“The Fianna Fail representatives in Inishowen also proposed that if people’s septic tanks do need to have remedial works carried out then the government should put a grant scheme in place to allow for work to be done.”

The meeting on Friday night with almost 300 people was chaired by Inishowen councillor Rena Donaghey.

Colr Paul Canning also conducted a presentation about the current regulations, while the Carndonagh Deputy also addressed the crowd.

“This is an important issue to a lot of people in Inishowen,” explained Deputy McConalogue.

“This bill was rushed through the Senate without time being taken to read the 72 amendments which was proposed by Fianna Fail and other opposition parties. As a party we have concerns about the regulation of standards which septic tanks will be required to meet.”