AN unexpected spend could be in the pipeline for Clare County Council. And local authorities around the country as a result of changes in legislation with regard to septic tanks. One public representative could feel it in his waters and raised the matter with council officials recently.
Septic Tank Charges
Ruan councillor Joe Arkins casually enquired at the recent meeting of North Clare councillors. Whether or not the local authority would have to register septic tanks associated with some of its public toilets.
The question as part of a discussion in which it was claimed that people in Doolin will be forced to break the law. If the Government does not provide money for a new sewerage system in the village.
Under the Water Services (Amendment) Act 2012, owners of domestic wastewater treatment systems will have to register their systems with their water services authority. Inspections will begin next year and where an on-site system fails an inspection, remedial works will be carried out.
Unfortunately, it is not yet clear how this change in the law will affect Clare County Council and other local authorities nationwide.
Public Toilets in Clare
Clare County Council confirmed to The Clare Champion that it has five public toilets on septic tanks. They are located at Fanore beach, White Strand in Milltown Malbay, Spanish Point beach, Lough Derg amenity area at Ballycuggeran, Killaloe and in Lissycasey village.
Sean Ward, senior engineer with Clare County Council water services, said the council has yet to be told what will happen in these cases.
“Regarding eligibility for septic tank charges, I can’t answer this yet as, like all councils, we are awaiting full guidelines and/or directions from the Department of Environment, Community and Local Government about the operation of the charges and inspection system,” he stated.
Mr Ward also pointed out that not all public toilets in the county operate on a septic tank system.
“Public toilets in Ennis, Kilrush, Kilkee (town and seafront), Lahinch, Killaloe and Mountshannon marina are served by sewers,” he concluded.