The Committee on the Future Funding of Domestic Water Services has voted in favour of a final report in line with the legal advice it received today. 

Fianna Fáil and Fine Gael supported the report, while other parties and groups voted against it. The report re-instates the words excessive usage and imposes levies on those that use excessive amounts of water.

It bases excessive usage on 1.7 times the average household usage, with consideration being given to average individual usage of 133 litres per person per day. 

It also states meters should be installed in all new builds. 

Reacting to the vote this evening the Fine Gael Parliamentary Party chairman, Martin Heydon, described the legal advice today as a vindication of the Fine Gael position and said it was a victory for new politics.

He said Fine Gael could not have stood by a report which opened up the country to possible European Union fines.

Barry Cowen of Fianna Fáíl said water charges are gone and he didn't care how this was being spun by others as a 2-0 victory to Minister Simon Coveney .

He blamed the delay in coming to an agreement on the report on the Fine Gael party. Committee chairman Padraig Ó Céidigh said he stood 100% by the report, while Sinn Féin, Solidarity- PBP and some independents accused Fianna Fáil of a U-turn.

The Green Party said the report did not go far enough on conservation matters.

Statements on water, which were due to take place in the Dáil this evening, have been postponed until tomorrow.

Following a decision at the Oireachtas Business Committee, statements will now be taken tomorrow evening after statements on the Fennelly Commission.