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Two parties in running for Kilkee Dive Centre business

CLARE County Council is considering two expressions of interest in Kilkee Dive Centre, which local town councillors say is extremely expensive to operate. At Monday’s meeting of Kilkee Town Council, Town Mayor Paddy Collins asked for an update on the centre. Kilkee town manager Anne Haugh read a letter from Michael McNamara, corporate services of Clare County Council, where he outlined the latest situation. “Some months ago the council sought expressions of interest from parties interested in leasing the dive centre in Kilkee, consequent of a previous lease being terminated. Three parties expressed interest. Detailed submissions were subsequently received from two interested parties. These submissions are under consideration at the moment and before the end of the month, the council hopes to be in a position to select a preferred party,” the letter read. “This will give that party ample opportunity to have the facility up and running for 2014. The council are committed to ensure that the facility is …

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Manuel fumes over key refusal

KILKEE man Manuel Di Lucia has reacted angrily to the local town council’s decision not to give him a key to the East End barrier in the town, which accesses the slipway in the resort. Earlier this year, the town council undertook to distribute a limited number of keys to relevant boat or sub aqua clubs. However, there have been instances of visitors to the town being unable to access the slipway because the barrier has been locked. Monday’s meeting heard that Limerick and Athlone Sub Aqua clubs had written to Kilkee Town Council seeking a key apiece. “Cyril [Feeney executive engineer], and the lads had no problem as long as they sign indemnities,” town mayor Paddy Collins commented. However, Councillor Collins was less enthused at the prospect of handing out keys to individuals. “Can Manuel (Di Lucia) sign an indemnity as an individual? I don’t see the need for Manuel to have a key at this present time,” the …

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Great Dane invades to protect Brianna

By Dan Danaher RE-ENACTMENTS of Brian Boru’s heroics against the Vikings are planned for Killaloe next year but a Great Dane has made a pre-emptive strike and stolen the hearts of a local family. Charlie, a two-year-old member of the much-loved dog breed, has become so attached to toddler Brianna Lynch, who suffers from epilepsy, that he has developed an uncanny ability to detect her frequent seizures, 20 minutes before the start of each episode. The giant dog simply adores Brianna and is very protective of her any time he senses she is about to have an epileptic fit. In fact, the family pet will pin the child to the wall and not leave her until someone comes to her aid. Her mother, Arabella, describes the dog’s sixth sense without any training as “amazing”. “Charlie is so sensitive to her needs; if the other dogs get boisterous, he will stand by her side to ensure she doesn’t get knocked over. …

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Windfarm could power 11,000 homes

By Peter O’Connell A PROPOSED windfarm extension in Kilmaley parish could power up to 11,000 homes nationwide, if a joint ESB Wind Development Ltd/Coillte application is successful. Details relating to the proposed extension to the Boolynagleragh windfarm will be outlined at a public information event in Kilmaley GAA Club from 3pm to 8pm next Tuesday. ESB Wind Development Ltd, in conjunction with Coillte, will host the event. “The proposed windfarm will potentially generate enough electricity to power over 11,000 homes,” Wind Development Ltd and Coillte stated in a joint statement. “ESB International is preparing the Environmental Impact Statement, as well as the planning application for the proposal. Representatives from ESB Wind Development and Coillte will be present to provide information and answer any queries regarding the proposed windfarm,” the statement added. On Wednesday, Stephen Cosgrove of ESB International said it could take more than two years for electricity to be generated on the site, if planning permission is approved. “It …

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ASBOs suggestion to target ‘untouchables’

By Jessica Quinn THE chairman of Ennis’ Joint Policing Committee (JPC) has come out in support of the use of ASBOs (Anti-Social Behaviour Orders) to target a group of “untouchables” in Ennis’ town centre. Councillor Paul O’Shea, chairman of the JPC, was speaking after a proposal was put forward by Councillor Johnny Flynn for greater use of ASBOs at this week’s meeting of Ennis Town Council. The proposal is now to be referred to the JPC, where the committee, which includes the gardaí in Ennis, will further discuss it. Speaking at the meeting, Councillor Flynn called on the local authority to send out a strong message of “no messing in Ennis”. He proposed that the council “urgently recommend that a planned pilot scheme of greater usage of ASBOs for Ennis town centre area by the gardaí and the court services be implemented against criminal and public order offenders, including juvenile and other age groups of offenders”. He added that following …

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Health and Safety Award for Clare Local Authorities

WHEN it comes to in-house health and safety performance, Clare Local Authorities lead the way. This week, at a ceremony in Galway, Clare Local Authorities was named overall winner of the Local Authority Award in the 22nd annual national safety awards scheme. Organised by the National Irish Safety Organisation (NISO) and Northern Ireland Safety Group (NISG), the scheme recognises organisations which demonstrate a consistently good or continuously improving health and safety performance and an outstanding contribution to occupational safety, health and welfare during the previous year. Mayor of Clare, Councillor Joe Arkins lauded the success. “The fact that Clare Local Authorities were deemed the overall winner out all local authority areas on the island of Ireland is a recognition of the strong leadership and commitment demonstrated by management, influencing of stakeholders and particularly the engagement of staff at all levels of the organisation to continuously improve health and safety performance and comply with the law as a minimum standard of …

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Hurling icons champion Clare’s Age Friendly Programme

TWO All-Ireland senior hurling championship winning managers participated in the launch of the West of Ireland’s first Age Friendly Strategy. Ger Loughnane and Davy Fitzgerald, accompanied by the Liam McCarthy Cup, joined more than 300 people at Treacy’s West County Hotel in Ennis for the launch of Clare’s Age Friendly Programme. The multi-agency initiative has been prepared by the Clare Age Friendly County Alliance Board and Clare County Development Board, with the support of the National Ageing Well Network. Among the actions contained in the plan is an expansion in the number of Voluntary Housing Schemes for older people. The programme also seeks to make pedestrian crossing times more age appropriate, support the development of community gardens, provide more shelters and better lighting in bus shelters, and host of an annual celebration of the contribution of the county’s older musicians and artists. The newly launched programme has been developed in the context of the growing international awareness of the need …

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Jobs under threat as IMPACT and Aer Lingus clash

THE creation of 40 new Aer Lingus jobs at Shannon to service the airline’s transatlantic services in the New Year is under threat this week. This is due to disagreement between the airline and trade union IMPACT, which represents cabin crew staff, over the staffing of the flights and as a result Aer Lingus has said it will be outsourcing the work. They have also warned that some of the existing cabin crew jobs may be jeopardised. The trade union claims that the airline has failed to negotiate with them in a meaningful way, and they are balloting their members for industrial action. IMPACT also claims that Aer Lingus are using scare tactics to try and get what they want, and it is imperative that their members don’t give in to them. In a letter to staff, Aer Lingus chief executive Christoph Mueller put the blame firmly on IMPACT. “I wish to update you on an important and very regrettable …

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