RTE boss Dee Forbes has clarified rumours of an increase in the tv license fee.
Earlier today while on Today with Sean O’Rourke, the station’s general director told listeners that the current fee is “incredible value for money” and much lower than most other countries.
“The licence fee is 40c a day. Quite honestly, I think it should be double that,” she added.
Since then, Dee has gone back on that statement, saying “Any notion that it be doubled is nonsense.”
Clarifying what she meant, and speaking of the sale of land on their Donnybrook campus, Dee revealed, “RTÉ has been operating with vastly reduced commercial and licence fee income, now in the region of €330m, compared to €440m in 2008, and has been under-investing in the organisation for nearly a decade now. That is unsustainable.
“The funds from the land sale will be used to invest in much-needed technology upgrades and in key digital infrastructure, to reduce debt levels, and to carry out other essential workplace improvements.
“The reality is that RTÉ has maintained services and output on vastly reduced income and that is no longer sustainable.
“The current licence fee, at just over 40c a day, is I believe great value. Any notion that it be doubled is nonsense.
“What I am focused on is reform of the fee collection system to recover some €40m per annum that is lost to the entire Irish sector every year through evasion.”