Bill only signed into law on Christmas Day
THE bill to allow Irish Water to charge "all domestic customers" on the main public supply was only signed into law on Christmas Day, it has emerged.
The Commission for Energy Regulation (CER) also took over regulation of Irish Water on December 25 as well.
The legislation governing the establishment of Irish Water passed all stages through the Oireachtas on December 19.
But Irish Water managing director John Tierney told the Joint Oireachtas Environment Committee yesterday that it was only signed into law on December 25.
The legislation formally granted Irish Water authority to charge all domestic customers who are in receipt of public water and waste water services from October 1, 2014, with the first bills to be issued in early 2015.
But it also emerged that Irish Water is required by law to submit a plan for the charging of customers for the provision of water services to the Commission for Energy Regulation for approval.
The Act also required Irish Water to prepare and submit a 25-year water services strategic plan to Environment Minister Phil Hogan for approval.
Included in this plan is a seven-year project aimed at delivering a viable long-term water supply for Dublin, the committee heard yesterday.