Time for the Minister to call out the rubbish bin company- Ellis

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Sinn Féin TD for Dublin North West, Dessie Ellis, said that “Greyhound waste management company is leading Minister Coveney and their customers on a merry dance in relation to their price plans”.

Deputy Ellis highlighted the fact that some customers will have to pay twice in one calendar year for a yearly contract with Greyhound, going against the agreement to postpone proposed bin hikes in June.

Deputy Ellis said:

“In a reply to a Parliamentary Question that I asked last month, the Minister said that Greyhound’s approach is “out of step with the arrangements made by other collectors in the industry”. The Minister also said that he was “informed that a large number of customers have already been in contact with the company to indicate that they wish to retain their current price plan arrangements”.

“While this is true, it denies the reality for the majority of their customers. in terms of fees. The company in question is crediting customer accounts for fees pre-paid for the period after 1 July 2016, while at the same time requesting customers to enter a new annual contract from 1st  August 2016.

“By crediting customers again on August 1st, Greyhound are not charging extra, but the result of this is that customers will have to pay twice in one calendar year for a yearly contract.

“So in reality, any customer who paid their yearly charge last January now needs to enter another yearly contact in August, and pay now to continue their current plan – which they are compelled to honour until August 2017. More importantly it places a burden on those who can’t afford to pay.

“With no option for instalments or no bin waiver, many people including pensioners who have budgeted and paid their waste charges for the year last January, now have to find another sum of money to stay on their existing plan and cannot shop around for a better price.

“As the Minister said in his answer to me, this approach is out of step with other collectors. I would contend therefore that it is out of step with the spirt of the agreement entered into with the Minister himself.

“What have Greyhound to do to force the Minister to act to stamp out these sharp and customer unfriendly practices? It’s time the Minister called Greyhound to heel and force them to engage properly in the agreement agreed in June. “

Rising rates highlight urgent need for rent certainty – Ellis

Dessie Ellis TD speaking at 2015 Ard Fheis

Responding to a report from property website daft.ie today which showed a national increase in rents of 3.9% Sinn Féin TD Dessie Ellis TD urged the government to look again at introducing rent certainty to alleviate pressure on struggling households.
Teachta Ellis said;
“The consequences of these continuous rent increases are not trivial and it affects everyone dependent on the private rental sector for accommodation. This includes middle income working families who cannot afford to save to buy a home, low income families that are paying up to 60% of their disposable income on rent and the students whose number is on the increase every year, with fewer properties available to meet this growth.
“Sinn Féin brought forward a Bill that would have provided rent certainty for landlords and tenants alike and this was rejected by both Fianna Fáil and Fine Gael. This Bill would have linked rent increases and decreases to the Consumer Price Index which would have provided some stability for the market. The government’s housing action plan offers little hope for those in the private rental sector other than a vague pledge to commission a white paper included in the plan.
“The situation is such that many parents have to decide between paying rent and covering increasing back to school costs. In some cases families are being made homeless because of an inability to pay the rising rents or to secure rental accommodation. With 2,000 children now in emergency accommodation it is clear that household poverty is increasing. The government must recognise that rent certainty is key to alleviating pressure on these households.”