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Additional finance for flood damage

FINANCE Minister Michael Noonan has confirmed that additional funding will be made available to deal with the aftermath of flooding due to the Catherine and Bridget storms. Speaking in Limerick this Monday afternoon, where he viewed flood damage,  he said he expected that the scale of devastation caused in recent weeks would mean that more money would be needed from central Government. Mr Noonan said the funding would come from the national budget and that the amounts required would be affordable in the overall national context. Individual local authorities are estimating the cost of damage and then when the overall Minister of State for the Office of Public Works Brian Hayes said a full assessment of the damage in western counties in January was due this week and a memo would be brought before a Cabinet meeting next week.

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Worse flooding to hit Clare

AS Clare County Council tots up the massive bill for the combined damaged caused by storms Christine and Bridget,  Met Éireann has forecast worse if still to come in terms of flooding. The local authority says most areas affected by severe weather in early January were again affected by the weekend storm with further structural damage reported along Clare’s Atlantic coastline and at some locations along the Shannon Estuary. Some remedial flood defence works carried out in recent weeks have been significantly undone in places as a result of the weekend weather, including at The Flaggy Shore, Seafield, and Kilbaha. Lahinch promenade  remains closed to the public until further notice after the walkways and seawall suffered further damage at the weekend. A number of other locations, which were not significantly affected by previous storms, have suffered infrastructural damage and flooding including Kilkee, Spanish Point and Moyasta. The  focus is on the cleanup of storm affected areas in addition to  remedial works …

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Mopping up after storms

COUNTY Clare is in mop up mode after the weekend storm, which undid much of the repair works carried out following Catherine a few weeks ago.  A considerable a mount of flooding occurred inland as a result both high tides and water pouring off the lands early on St Bridget’s Day and this was followed by further damage next day. A number of families found themselves, once again cut off by surrounding flood water.   Flooding on the main road into Shannon  

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Geopark shortlisted for international tourism award

THE management and promotion of the Burren and Cliffs of Moher Geopark as a sustainable destination has been officially recognised by one of the world’s foremost tourism and travel award schemes. The World Travel and Tourism Council (WTTC) has confirmed the Geopark is one of 18 finalists for its 2014 Tourism for Tomorrow Awards, just two months after the Clare destination was shortlisted for a top honour in the 2013 World Responsible Tourism Awards. The Tourism for Tomorrow Awards are one of the highest accolades in the global travel and tourism industry, recognising sustainable tourism best practices in businesses and destinations worldwide, ranging from local destinations to global hotel groups, international airlines, luxury tour operators and small eco-lodges. Award applications were received this year from 56 countries, representing all continents. The Burren and Cliffs of Moher Geopark has been shortlisted alongside Bonito (Brazil) and Temes SA in Costa Navarino (Greece) as Destination Award finalists for “showing commitment to supporting and …

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Lynch turns away from Fine Gael

 By Peter O’Connell KILRUSH town councillor Ian Lynch is to switch his political allegiance from Fine Gael and stand in the West Clare area as an Independent candidate in the May election. He will join the battle for votes in the West Clare capital with his town council party colleague Marian McMahon Jones, who was added to the Fine Gael ticket after the November  convention. Sitting county councillors Gabriel Keating and Oliver Garry were selected at the Fine Gael convention to represent the party in the expanded west Clare constituency. Currently Kilrush is without a representative on Clare County Council for the first time in the local authority’s history. Councillor Lynch was elected to Kilrush Town Council, on the first count, in 2009 and says that he regrets not running for the county council five years ago. “Looking back this may have been a mistake because since the local elections in 2009 Kilrush town and the greater hinterland have been …

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Rental properties used for cannabis growhouses

  By CAROL BYRNE GARDAÍ are appealing to landlords to frequently check their properties arising from the discovery of six cannabis growhouses, all located in rental properties in County Clare in the past three weeks. The warning comes after gardaí uncovered a sixth grow house in County Clare last Thursday, where cannabis plants with an estimated street value of up to €144,000 were found in Mullagh. This latest haul brings the total drugs seized in the county to €1.43 million. The seizure was made as part of an ongoing operation targeting the cultivation, possession and sale of cannabis in the county. “Because of recent discoveries of cannabis growhouses in the county we are asking all those who have rented properties to check them and ensure all is in order and if they have any suspicions to contact the Gardaí immediately,” Superintendent Derek Smart of Ennis Garda Station said. He said “in the vast majority” of grow house cases the operations …

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The show goes on at Bridgetown

FEARS for the future of the annual South-East Clare Agricultural Show in Bridgetown have been allayed after a rallying call achieved the desired result. New blood was urgently required to ensure the survival of the annual South-East Clare Agricultural Show in Bridgetown in July and show society chairman, Pat Hayes issued a clarion call in The Clare Champion recently for new members to turn out in large numbers at a special show meeting in Bridgetown National School last week. A number of key positions on the committee, including the secretary’s post, were vacant following retirements and emigration of possible replacement candidates. Mr Hayes said new members had to step forward to ensure the survival of the show. His plea was heeded after 35 turned up, including  new members, to meeting in order to ensure the show will go ahead as scheduled. Glowing tributes were paid to a number of outgoing members who opted to retire, some of whom have worked in …

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Heavy rains fill Fergus

Picture gallery from around Ennis showing the effects of the recent heavy rain.

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