Frank O’Rourke has said insurance providers need to pass on some of their massive profits to consumers and called on the Government to immediately implement the recommendations of the Cost of Insurance Working Group.
Deputy O’Rourke was commenting following reports that three insurance companies in Ireland made a combined profit of €200 million last year and said, “Insurance companies are raking it in by imposing huge premiums on consumers for their home, motor and business insurance. Individuals across Kildare cannot keep up with rising motor and home insurance costs and businesses such as nightclubs, marts and childcare facilities are considering closing down because of the massive increases in public liability and business insurance.”
“While I accept that the personal injury awards are far too high in Ireland and that they are a key contributor to the rising insurance costs, I do not accept insurance companies not passing on some of their profits to their customers – that just makes good business sense. Insurance premiums continue to rise far in excess of what is fair or justified. These rising costs are a huge burden on customers, business, charities, and sports clubs. It is very important that the recommendations of the working group, formed to tackle rising insurance costs, are implemented immediately. So far it appears little has been done in this regard.”
“The establishment of a national claims database is just one step we can take. The legislation for this database was enacted some time ago, yet it languishes in the Department. In addition to the database the establishment of a dedicated Garda insurance fraud unit is one action which is often brought up by businesses and communities as an essential measure.” The Department must do more to prevent rising insurance costs. There are options on the table but little has been done to date while premiums continue to rise. The Minister ought to take this matter more seriously and step up efforts before we see the closure of more businesses and homeowners taking risks with their homes”, concluded Deputy O’Rourke.
Frank O’Rourke TD has welcomed the confirmation of news that Traffic Signals are going to be installed at the junction of Ryebridge in Kilcock.
Frank commented, “Residents from Ryebridge Estate had contacted me over the last number of years highlighting the need to improve traffic management for cars trying to get onto the Old Galway Road from their estate at the Enfield/Summerhill junction.”
“I am delighted that we now have confirmation that Traffic Lights will be installed in the coming months which will bring benefit to the residents of Ryebridge. I have also been informed that there will be a cycle track installed by the end of this summer form Ryebridge Estate to Kilcock Town Centre via the Mill Lane.”
“I want to acknowledge the work of the Council, the developer and the Residents in the Estate for their work with me in relation to this project. I look forward to the works been completed as soon as possible.”
Frank O’Rourke TD has welcomed the introduction of new rules by the Central Bank which will make it easier for mortgage holders to switch banks.
Frank said, “I have made repeated calls for a fairer mortgage market in Ireland. Irish variable mortgage rates are nearly double than of the EU average. The rest of Europe is paying interest of around 1.8% – while Irish customers are paying an average of 3.2% ” “Under new central bank rules, Banks will have to tell customers if they can make savings on their mortgages. Recent research has established that approximately one-in-five homeowners could save money by switching to a better interest rate.”
“I am hoping that the new central bank rules in relation to mortgage switching will bring increased competitiveness to the market, with better rate offers from banks who will not want customers to switch to another lender.”
Frank O’Rourke TD has welcomed confirmation that the Department of Education has approved a three classroom extension to the Tiermohan National School (NS).
Frank commented, “Last year, I met with the Principal of the School and saw at first hand the need for this extension. I made representations to the Minister and the Department of Education to put pressure on to secure approval for this extension. I am delighted that the extension has now been approved.”
“As our demand grows for extra school places, we must build extensions or provide new schools for growing areas. I am delighted that Tiermohan have been successful in securing approval for their extension. Great credit is due to the Principal, Parents and Board of Management for their work in securing this approval.” Concluded Deputy O’Rourke.
Frank O’Rourke TD has criticised the government for delaying legislation which would clamp down on insurance fraud.
Frank commented, “Recent findings published by the insurance industry has labelled half of all personal injury claims brought to court as “potentially fraudulent”. False and misleading claims have negative …consequences for Irish policyholders and drive up the cost of insurance premiums.”