There has been a surge in registrations for the septic tank fee in the build-up to tomorrow’s deadline of the €5 discounted rate ending.
That is according to Minister for the Environment Phil Hogan, who compared it to a late surge seen in relation to the household charge back in March.
Septic tank owners have until tomorrow to pay the €5 fee or have it increased to €50. People are legally obligated to register for the inspection of their septic tanks by February 1st 2013.
More than 113,000 households have registered and Mr Hogan urged those who had not paid to do so.
“People pay at the deadline, they pay when they have to, as I do with my motor tax. This week, to avail of the discount rate of a fiver, a lot of people have been coming to their local authority or paying online. Twenty-five per cent have paid to date – and most of that has happened in the last two weeks.”
“Anecdotal evidence has shown that the introduction of the registration has already improved our environment, with people locating their tanks for the first time in years and getting them desludged,” he said.
An objective and evidence-based system of inspections would start in 2013, Mr Hogan said. Unless there was evidence of endangerment of human health or the environment, the system in place should pass inspection.
According to last year’s census, there are 497,281 septic tanks and other on-site waste-water treatment systems in the State.
Mr Hogan said payment of the household charge had exceeded expectations: “I want to thank the people that have paid to date. Sixty-seven per cent of people have paid – contrary to what a lot of commentators predicted, who said only 30 per cent would pay.”