Dublin local authorities say they will not link college grants to household charge payments

DUBLIN local authorities are not adopting a policy of linking college grants to payment of the household charge, they have said.

The comments were made after Clare County Council asked third-level grant applicants to submit proof they or their parents have paid the €100 house levy.

A letter issued by the council states, in order to progress the payment of the first instalment of the college funding, applicants should return their household charge receipt.

Families across the country were concerned today that their own applications would be affected.

However, both Dublin City Council and Fingal County told the Herald they have not issued similar letters to grant applicants and have no plans to do so.

Education Minister Ruairi Quinn believes it was “reasonable” of Clare council to request the information of people who were seeking taxpayers' money.

He said he imagined other local authorities are doing the same.

Mr Quinn added the Department of Education had no role in the move and that collection of the levy is the responsibility of city and county councils.

Fianna Fail leader Micheal Martin branded the council's letter as “out of order”.

For full details see the Herald today