Sunday 21 January 2018

If TV licence system is broke, fix it - don't penalise the payers

Dee Forbes Photo: David Conachy
Dee Forbes Photo: David Conachy
Letters to the Editor

Letters to the Editor

Some months ago, RTÉ director general Dee Forbes suggested doubling the licence fee, now she wants just a 7pc increase. Presumably, we are all supposed to feel relieved, like the annual debacle of budget scares by Government "leaks".

Ms Forbes says the increase would generate an extra €15m. We are also told that there is a 15pc non-payment on the current fee, a shortfall of €40m. This is a very high rate of payment default, despite the constant TV and radio ads threatening doom for non-payers.

Ms Forbes herself said that failure to reform the system means those who pay the licence fee are now subsidising those who don't. She said the TV licence fee system is "fundamentally broken", yet RTÉ's suggested solution is to further penalise those who pay, to make up for those who don't. Here's another solution that could work: if it's broke, fix it!

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