Someone said :
That's not the point, we already PAY for water...see below.
Yes but how can you have a decent service that was dependant on revenues generated by excise taxes? There are people can't drink their water, pipes bursting every time there is a bit of cold weather, lack of supply any time the reservoirs can't keep up with the demand. The fact is they weren't spending enough money on it even during the good times, and now that general revenue has significantly dropped the money is not there to pay for it anymore.
People have had a tax reduction overall and will get more over the next 2 years hopefully. For someone earning 20K (16K under the actual average in this country) they will have 175euro more per year after tax cuts. With water charge of 175 minus the 20% tax relief you can claim back on it means the water charges are 140 leaving you 35 better off in a year. Not much I know but couldn't you argue that the money you were paying as per the 1997 act has been given back to you and now they are just taking it a different way?
In saying that I think Irish Water themselves have been an absolute balls at setting up the company, dealing with the public etc