Carrick-on-Suir Town Council has decided to relax its policy on prohibiting its tenants from getting gas meters installed in their homes to help with household budgeting.
Town Clerk Michael O’Brien informed the Council’s April meeting that rather than having a blanket approach to the gas meters issue the Council would look at it on a case by case basis.
The Council would take into account such factors as the length of a tenant’s residence in a council home and rent arrears when deciding whether to allow a gas meter to be installed.
“We haven’t formally changed our position yet but are looking at it. We will have a Housing Committee meeting prior to the next Council meeting and come back with something,” he told councillors in response to questions from Cllr Patsy Fitzgerald.
Mr O’Brien added that the Council would hold off on writing to Bord Gais to request it again to pay for the removal of unwanted gas meters in Town Council homes.
The provision in the Town Council’s revised Tenant Handbook prohibiting council tenants from installing gas meters was strongly criticised by Cllr Sylvia Cooney-Sheehan at the Council’s meeting in March.
She pressed council officials to delete from the handbook the sentence stating that card type gas meters were not allowed in Town Council homes. The Mayor Cllr Liam Walsh and Cllr Patsy Fitzgerald suggested the wording of the clause be amended.
Town Clerk Michael O’Brien explained the Council hadn’t any issue with the installation of gas meters as long as Bord Gais paid the cost of removing them. The Council didn’t want to be left liable to pay the estimated E200 to E300 it cost to remove one from a house when a new tenant moved in and didn’t want the meter.
Following further debate, Mr O’Brien agreed to take a look at the issue again.