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Mysterious 'No Irish Water Tax' Graffiti Pops Up on Flushing Building

By Katie Honan | January 23, 2015 5:28pm
 The message was posted near the top of a tower under construction on 37th Avenue. 
Flushing Graffiti Speaks Out Against Water Tax in Ireland
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FLUSHING — A mysterious graffiti message appearing to reference a fight over the tax on water in Ireland has popped up on a Flushing building.

"No Irish Water Tax!" has been scrawled in white on top of a new tower on 37th Avenue in Flushing, Queens — apparently a message against the new tax for water consumption in Ireland.

The tax is assessed for everything from drinking water to using the toilet, but its connection to the Flushing building, or when the message was painted, is unclear.

The entrance to the building is at 136-33 37th Ave. but the message, positioned underneath what appears to be two water towers, is visible from Northern Boulevard.

Calls to the building's owner were not immediately returned. The building was issued a partial stop work order on Jan. 12 for expired permits, according to the Department of Buildings. 

A construction worker outside the building said he wasn't aware of the graffiti.

"What is a water tax?" the worker, who declined to give his name, asked.

The government in Ireland began taxing its residents for water consumption in the fall of 2014, sparking protests from residents who say they already pay enough in taxes, especially after its 2008 economic decline.

It costs between $2.75 and $5.50 dollars per 1,000-liters of water per household, depending on which services are in use, according to the BBC.

Households already get "free" 30,000 liters per household, with more allotted to homes with children.

Thousands protested in Dublin and throughout the country on Human Rights Day on Dec. 10, 2014, and protests continue across the country.

Tara DeDanann, and organizer for the movement and creator of the Boycott Irish Water group on Facebook, said they have been "greatly humbled and overjoyed by the support rolling in from all over the world for our campaign."

Seeing the photograph from Queens was great, she said, and "means that people who perhaps have no connection to Ireland whatsoever, may still be aware of this important campaign against the erosion of people's basic human rights and of their resources."

They are planning another protest on Jan. 31 in Ireland.