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Minister Simon Harris

Clonahinchy omitted from flood relief list

CLOHANINCHY Action Group chairman, Michael Neenan, has reacted with frustration to news that Minster of State Simon Harris detailed €390m of an Estimates Allocation on behalf of the Office of Public Works (OPW) on Tuesday, which contained no mention of areas in Clare, including Clohaninchy near Quilty, which is in need of a permanent coastal defensive structure.

The Clohaninchy Action Group is due to meet with Minister Harris in Leinster House on Wednesday next.

“This allocation reaffirms the commitment of the Government and I to tackling the problem of flooding throughout the country, despite very difficult decisions made in many expenditure areas,” Minister Harris said in his statement.

“A total of €225 million has been set aside for capital flood risk management and mitigation expenditure in the Infrastructure and Capital Investment Medium Term Exchequer Framework for the period 2012-2016. This annual allocation of €45m has enabled the OPW, in conjunction with its local authority partners, to address both existing and future flood risk pro-actively and systematically through a number of complementary programmes,” he added.

Mr Neenan expressed frustration that a proposed feasibility study, for which €200,000 has been sanctioned, has yet to be carried out.

“From the time that (former OPW minister) Brian Hayes came down to us in February and said to get on with the work, I did not think that we would be in the middle of October waiting for a feasibility study and a report to be done. I thought that there would be something sent up to the OPW and that we would be considered for funding for a permanent structure in Clohaninchy. There is nothing done nine months down the line. It’s only gone out to tender for the feasibility study. That should have been moved on quicker and we should have been considered,” Michael Neenan said.

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