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Ennis

Lower insurance premiums for low-risk flooding says Flynn

INSURANCE companies shouldn’t be allowed to use flood-relief works in Ennis to line their own pockets, according to Councillor Johnny Flynn.At this week’s meeting of Ennis Town Council, he suggested that the OPW should issue certs for people who live or have businesses in areas that are now much safer from flooding, due to works carried. He said that lower premiums should now be charged due to the much lower risk of flooding.Councillor Peter Considine claimed “two well-known companies” had refused to even give quotes to people in Ennis. “Two people phoned for quotes and when they said they were in Ennis, they were told quotes weren’t being made up for Ennis.”At the meeting, councillors also complained about poor water pressure in the town. Mayor of Ennis Frankie Neylon said that pressure was being diverted away from certain areas at certain times and he said that before he had left his house for the meeting, the water pressure had been …

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Support for regular pedestrianisation

THERE is some enthusiasm among Ennis Town councillors for introducing extending pedestrianisation beyond Christmas and possibly providing free parking at certain times.At the meeting, town clerk Eddie Power said that some retailers felt more regular pedestrianisation would be helpful. “This year, we had pedestrianisation on three Saturdays and the last Sunday and Christmas Eve. One of the comments from the business sector was that the council might consider more regular pedestrianisation because when it comes in pre-Christmas, it leads to some confusion.”He said more consultation would take place with the commercial sector and more detailed views would be available to the councillors at the February meeting.Councillor Johnny Flynn expressed support for having some free parking while Councillor Brian Meaney said that anything making retail premises more accessible and the town more pleasant, needed to be considered.Councillor Meaney also said that the council should look at creating a position of town centre manager. Regarding pedestrianisation, Councillor Peter Considine said he agreed …

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Turnpike pub blaze not malicious, say gardaí

GARDAÍ believe there was nothing malicious about a fire that gutted Aylmer’s Rest pub on St Stephen’s Day.

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Community development group in appeal to councillors

ENNIS Community Development Project (CDP) is appealing to all local councillors and TDs to examine the impact on the most marginal and disenfranchised communities of the possible reduction of the number of CDPs nationally.Chairman of Ennis CDP, Dermot Hayes, has described Government plans as “another blow to the communities who need to participate and engage at decision-making”. “The implications of closures are stark. Disadvantaged communities will be further undermined and there will be consequences for employment, training, education, and anti-social behaviour,” Mr Hayes claimed.He claimed Ennis CDP is cost effective. “The Government has announced it will reduce the number of CDPs nationally and is in the process of scrapping the national Community Development Plan. Community development will be subsumed into local development. We believe that there is every possibility that this will mean the loss of valuable skills and experience built up over the last 20 years of the programme. This programme was designed by Government to directly target disadvantage …

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Facelift plan for Tim Smythe Park

Ennis Town Council has engaged a consultancy firm to prepare plans for a major facelift of Tim Smythe Park, known locally as The Fairgreen, which includes the construction of a new children’s playground.Consultants Commane Stratton Reynolds are preparing revised drawings for the park and the town council intends to proceed to tender in mid-February, with work to upgrade and improve amenities commencing on site next April.A pedestrian crossing will be provided at the northern end of the park leading to the relocated playground, while there will also be a separate play area for young teenagers. The project will also include the replacement of existing exercise bars, the development of walkways and landscaping improvements. The Fairgreen is home to several junior soccer clubs in Clare and the redevelopment plan will see the demolition and replacement of the existing dressing room block. Minister of State Tony Killeen said that while improvement works such as the development of new playing pitches have taken …

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Roadworks needed after flooding

A SIGNIFICANT amount of roadworks are likely to be needed in Ennis due to the November flooding, according to the town council’s budget for 2010.“Road grants received in 2009 were substantially less than anticipated, due to funding restrictions at national level. The council has maintained its own resources allocation to the roads programme at €210,000. The overall situation regarding roads will need to be reviewed when road grants are notified in 2010, as there is evidence of significant work required as a result of the serious flooding that occurred in mid-November,” stated town manager, Ger Dollard in his introduction to the budget.He also said that the council is still looking at providing more off-street parking, while fewer people are breaching parking regulations in Ennis.“During 2009, the council advertised for expressions of interest for the provision of off street car parking in the town. Six expressions of interest were received and the council formed an assessment panel to consider the proposals. …

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No change to commercial rates

PARKING charges and commercial rates will remain at 2009 levels for another 12 months at least, as Ennis Town Council adopted its budget for the coming year at a special meeting last Thursday.There was little rancour, with the budget being adopted unanimously. Reviewing 2009, town manager Ger Dollard said that the grant to the town council had been cut twice in 2009, and when preparing the budget, an assumption of a 10% cut for 2010 had been made. Mr Dollard claimed that the current commercial rate in Ennis is “at the lower end of the scale” when compared to other similar-sized towns. He also said that it was estimated that the tax on second homes would generate around €350,000 for 2010.While Councillor Brian Meaney queried the assumption made that the cut in the Local Government Fund would be limited to 10%, Mr Dollard said that there were a number of unknowns but that the draft budget gave scope to deal …

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Chamber hopes for festive cash splash

WHILE the recession had hit hard leading to a slower than usual shopping splurge, Ennis Chamber is expecting business to gather momentum in the coming weeks as shoppers finally splash the cash.Chamber president, Guy Flouch said the town was bracing itself for a bumper shopping season and key shopping streets had been pedestrianised and parking spaces have been massively increased in anticipation of large shopping numbers. “The town is a fantastic place to shop. The town centre is compact, pulsating with family-friendly stores all offering a range of initiatives to create a traditional festive atmosphere,” Guy stressed.Mr Flouch added, “Visiting Ennis this Christmas will restore a hassle-free shopping experience imbued with traditional seasonal values. You will have choice, convenience and fantastic bargains.”To promote the town, Guy and Chamber CEO, Rita McInerney have been appearing on regional radio stations and have launched an intensive advertising campaign. They have also tapped into social networking sites.Ennis Town Council is playing its part, with …

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