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Homeowners opposed to flood levy to help others get insurance

The idea of a 1 per cent levy was mooted by Minister Phil Hogan last month – but a recent survey shows little desire among the public.

Passage East, Waterford post flooding earlier this year.
Passage East, Waterford post flooding earlier this year.
Image: Laura Hutton/Photocall Ireland

A NEW SURVEY shows there is no appetite among homeowners to help their counterparts in areas at risk of flooding to get insurance.

According to the research, homeowners are “emphatically against” an idea mooted by Minister Phil Hogan to introduce a 1 per cent levy to enable 50,000 houses to get flood cover.

The AA Consumer Panel of 16,500 people met the idea with “widespread cynicism”.

Just 13 per cent of those polled gave their full support to a plan to enhance flood prevention infrastructure along Ireland’s coasts and rivers.

AA Director of Consumer Affairs Conor Faughnan gives the Minister more credit for his idea, calling it a “constructive proposal” to a “real problem”.

“However…People seemed to be supportive of the principle but had little faith that government would use the money appropriately. 87 per cent did not believe that the State would keep a promise to spend the money on flood relief; 76 per cent felt that paying property tax was enough.”

The research indicated that if the proposed tax was used for a no-hods barred access to flood insurance cover for every home – irrespective of claims history or location – then support would be slightly stronger. However, 28 per cent were still completely opposed.

Many participants in the survey expressed frustration at the granting of planning permission by local authorities in these areas.

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