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Tag Archives: Fine Gael

Minister Pat Breen

Pat Breen chairs meeting on Gaza conflict

The Oireachtas Joint Committee on Foreign Affairs and Trade, chaired by Deputy Pat Breen, is to meet on this Wednesday afternoon with both the Ambassador of Palestine to Ireland and the Ambassador of Israel to Ireland. On the agenda for discussion is the situation in Gaza, as well as the wider Middle East Peace Process. Palestinian Ambassador H.E. Ahmad Abdelrazek will address the Committee at 2:30 pm and engagement with Israeli Ambassador H.E. Boaz Modai will follow at approximately 4 pm. Committee chair, Fine Gael TD Pat Breen, said, “This committee has a long-standing interest in Israel-Palestine relations and has monitored recent events closely. It is with optimism that we welcome the recent cessation in violence brokered last week. “Through constant contact with both ambassadors during the conflict, members were keen to stress that both sides need to end their use of violence immediately in order to spare ordinary citizens on all sides the terrible consequences of war. At tomorrow’s meeting, …

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€150,000 to elect council

OVER €150,000 was spent on campaigning by the 58 candidates who contested the Clare County Council election last May. According to figures obtained by The Clare Champion, the 28 new county councillors spent a total of €87,434, while 30 candidates who did not secure election incurred expenses totalling €66,985, giving a total of €154,419. The newly-elected Mayor of Ennis, Johnny Flynn, topped the list with a figure of €5,204, of which €3,811 came from his own resources and €1,392 was spent by Clare Fine Gael. It included €1,946 on adverstising, €1,464 on election posters and €1,417 on other election promotional literature. He was closely followed by former Ennis Town Councillor, Frankie Neylon, who spent €5,200, which included €2,000 on advertising, €1,000 on publicity and other election material, €500 on transport and another €1,000 on his campaign workers. In reaction to the figures, Sixmilebridge-based Richard Cahill, who spent in the region of €1,000 on his Euro South campaign, has called for …

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Students urged to choose accommodation carefully

Clare third level students, who will be studying away from home,  have been urged to take their time when choosing rental accommodation. The advice has come from Clare County Councillor, Mary Howard who said, “Students should take their time when looking for accommodation to ensure that their potential landlord is an experienced professional and what is on offer is within regulations. “Similarly, I would advise students to choose their flatmates carefully. Tenants are legally obliged to pay their rent and if they or their flatmates fall into arrears and do not repay them, they could face prosecution.” Councillor Howard said students should also consider the term of the lease being offered. “If they are only planning on renting for the academic year, a 12 month lease may not suit them. The Private Residential Tenancies Board (PRTB) maintains a register of all private tenancies and landlords are legally obligated to register the tenancy with the board. The PRTB has replaced the courts for the vast majority of landlord …

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‘See farms through children’s eyes’

Ennis Councillor Mary Howard has called upon farmers and residents living near farming areas to “see their farms through children’s eyes” and take the necessary precautions to ensure all areas are kept safe. “2014 is becoming a very dark year for farm deaths in Ireland,” the Fine Gael councillor said. “Seventeen people have died in farm accidents this year – one more than in the whole year of 2013. The Bank Holiday weekend marked a particular low, with two children dying in farm-related accidents. “I commend the IFA for trying to highlight the dangers of farming, and compliment the association for holding the first National Farm Safety Awareness Day with the Health and Safety Authority.”

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Conway seeks extension of small area policing

Fine Gael Clare Senator and Seanad spokesperson on Justice, Equality and Disability, Martin Conway, has proposed the nationwide extension of the Small Areas Policing Programme currently operated by An Garda Síochána in Dublin. The Small Areas Policing Programme aims to put gardaí back in touch with the communities they serve by building relationships with local people, instead of just responding to crime after it happens. It currently operates in Dublin with great success since its inception five years ago. “I believe that this ‘back to basics’ programme, which reconnects the gardaí with the communities they serve represents a welcome return to the core essence of policing-community engagement. It represents an adherence to the fundamental mission of An Garda Síochána, which is to work with communities to protect and serve. In the course of an Adjournment Debate on this matter in the Seanad Senator Conway asked the Minister to consider the expansion of this programme to cover the whole country in …

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European Parliament posts for Kelly and Clune

Two Ireland South MEPs, Deirde Clune and Sean Kelly have secured membership of much sought-after European Parliament committees. As the new parliamentary term began in Strasbourg this week,  Fine Gael delegation leader in the parliament, Mairead McGuinness, confirmed the party’s committee memberships. They are: Mairead McGuinness (Midlands North West) – Full membership of Agriculture & Rural Development/AGRI, substitute on Environment, Public Health & Food Safety/ENVI Sean Kelly (South) – Full membership of Industry and Energy/ITRE, substitute on Internal Market/INTA Deirdre Clune (South) – Full membership of Transport & Tourism/TRAN, substitute on Employment & Social Affairs/EMPL Brian Hayes (Dublin) – Full membership of Economic & Monetary Affairs/ECON, substitute on Development/DEVE & Budgetary control/CONT “We have been successful in securing membership of committees which are important to Ireland and the EU. These committees will be pivotal in driving the agenda for growth and jobs in the EU,” Ms McGuinness said. “The next five years in the European Parliament must focus on creating …

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Dooley critical of inaction on mobility allowance grant

Clare Fianna Fáil TD, Timmy Dooley TD has deplored the Government’s failure to make any attempt to replace two support schemes for people with disabilities that were discontinued last year. The Mobility Allowance and the Motorised Transport Grant were closed to new applicants from February 2013. The Government promised last June that these schemes would be replaced. “There was outcry when the Government discontinued these two important supports for people with disabilities were cancelled last year. Almost 400 people in the Mid West are dependent on the Mobility Allowance alone. They are still in limbo as the Government drags its heels on establishing alternative support schemes. It is completely unacceptable that a year later, these people are still waiting,” said Deputy Dooley. “The Government first announced the cancellation of these schemes early last year, describing them as ‘obsolete’. It caused great distress among people with disabilities who depend on such support to maintain a level of independence. The Mobility Allowance …

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Mayor odds favour Ennis councillors

Seven out of the eight Clare County Councillors elected to the Ennis area will hold the title of mayor over the coming five years, it emerged this week. Fine Gael’s John Crowe, from the Shannon Municipal District, was elected Clare’s first citizen on Friday, after days of negotiations between his party, Fianna Fáil and the technical group made up of independents and the local authority’s only Sinn Féin member. The Sixmilebridge man will be the only Fine Gael mayor of Clare during this council term. However, at Tuesday’s meeting of the Ennis Municipal District, the only municipal area where the title of the chairperson is ‘mayor’, Fine Gael’s Johnny Flynn was elected as Mayor of Ennis. This is due to the fact that Ennis has a population in excess of 20,000. His fellow Ennis councillors, Independent James Breen and Fianna Fáil’s Tom McNamara, will both hold the county’s first-citizen role during this five-year term. The Mayor of Ennis position will …

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