Seems the minister has ruled out a licence fee increase or communications charge and they are going to concentrate on evasion.
There's a very simple solution: Get Sky / UPC / Eir to collect the licence on their monthly bills - €13.30 per month.
The problem is An Post gets about €14 million a year to collect the licence and they want Sky / UPC / Eir to give them their customers details so An Post can continue to collect the licence.
An post made €8.6m in 2015, so the TV licence is sort of a subsidy for both RTE and An Post.
So if the minister solves the RTE problem, he creates a much bigger and political one with An Post.
One solution would be for An Post to 'process' the RTE licence fee, so Sky / UPC / Eir would collect the money, give it to An Post and An Post would get the €9.87 fee per licence, or a smaller amount for optics.
The real problem for RTE is that if their services were optional they would lose a massive amount of income.
Young people, foreigners, people who prefer the internet, would completely abandon RTE.
This would affect the quality of the programs and more people would switch off, a vicious circle.
But so what, in 5 or 10 years we will have very few print newspapers, if any - what's so special about RTE?
How can RTE report about the real world if they don't even live in it?
Cutbacks loom at RTE as Brexit ad hit pushes losses towards
The organisation is now projecting losses of up €20m in the current year, with advertising agency executives suggesting that TV advertising will be down 20pc in October due to Brexit uncertainty.Ryan Tubridy €495,000 Joe Duffy €400,000 Marian Finucane €295,000, Sean O’Rourke €290,000 Miriam O’Callaghan €280,000.
Most of the larger advertisers manage their budgets from London. The fall in sterling, combined with caution about spending it, is squeezing spending.
This week, new director general of Dee Forbes met with Minister for Communications Denis Naughten to impress upon him the seriousness of the financial difficulties facing the organisation.
RTE had been seeking the introduction of a new broadcasting charge to bolster its coffers.
However, Minister Naughten has ruled that out.
RTE's biggest hope for a funding boost now lies in licence fee collection.
High evasion levels are costing around €30m a year, and RTE wants the contract, currently held by An Post, put out to tender