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Service Level Agreement between Irish Water and Tipperary County Council needs to be revised – Cllr Lonergan

Independent County Councillor for Clonmel Borough District, Martin Lonergan has called of the Service Level Agreement (SLA) entered into by Irish Water and the Tipperary Local Authority to be revised as a matter of urgency.

Cllr Lonergan's call was made following submission of a motion at the February meeting of Tipperary County Council which called for a revision of the Agreement as provided for under the Water Services (no.2) Act 2013; specifically that the transfer of water services functions from the Local Authority to Irish Water which occurred under the said Act will now be revised to include properties, both residential and commercial which had previously been maintained by the County Council and relevant Town and Borough Councils.

Moving the motion, Cllr Lonergan said, “as we all know a service-level agreement (SLA) is a part of a standardized service contract where a service is formally defined. Particular aspects of the service - scope, quality, responsibilities - are agreed between the service provider and the service user.

The service provider been, the Local Authority and the service user been Irish Water in this instance.

In the first instance, we have seen were heretofore, Local Authorities took responsibility for issues with combined drains where blockages were a regular occurrence, we now see Irish Water wiping their hands of the responsibility and putting the onus back on the property owner.

I would ask that, seen as the Local Authority and local Town Councils were and remain aware of where issues can and do arise in estates and indeed areas, some of which were actually built by the Local Authority I might add, why then was this service not included in the SLA when it was been drawn up and agreed?

I am simply asking that we seek a review of the SLA, if that means nationally, that we right to the Department seeking this, if it means we can review our own Local Authorities SLA with Irish Water that we immediately do so! We have seen too many instances whereby no responsibility is take by Irish Water in estates where there are serious issues with sewerage blockages. This remains unacceptable and needs to be addressed,” concluded Cllr Lonergan.