Proposed ESB Bills Hike Must Be Rejected

Independent TD Mattie McGrath has called on the Commission for Energy Regulation (CER) to immediately withdraw its proposal to sanction an extra €1.8bn in spending increases for ESB and Eirgrid between 2016 and 2020. Deputy McGrath made his comments as fears are growing that if the proposal goes ahead it could add up to 5% to the annual ESB bill of the average family:

“This proposal is absolutely absurd and must be immediately withdrawn or revised to be cost neutral to struggling families.

The fact that families are expected to bear yet another hike in their utility bills is simply too much.

We have seen year on year increases in the cost of energy that households depend on while the CER stands back and gives the green light to them without any apparent consideration for the impact they are having on families.

What will infuriate people in particular is the knowledge that these increase are being sanctioned to offset costs associated with the running of Eirgrid, where it is reported today that staff costs have increased by more than €16million in the past five years to more than €134million.

We have seen from the Irish Water fiasco that families are already struggling to afford water charges to maintain the bloated quango. They should not be made to also cover the excessive staff costs associated with a company like Eirgrid that has already proven itself contemptuous toward local communities,” concluded Deputy McGrath.

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