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Breaking News

Clare house prices stable, but low volume of transactions

THE number of houses being bought and sold in Clare has been lower since the pandemic struck, but prices appear to be fairly stable. Covid-19 became a part of life during March, but sales held up in that month, with 111 transactions filed in Clare, compared to 110 filed in March of the previous year. However, in April the figure was at 81 compared to 102 in April of 2019. In May, the figure was down to 63, compared to 91 in April of 2019. The June figure was 82, down from 110 in the sme month last year, while in July it was 83, compared to 119 in July 2019. While the volume of sales may have dropped, the mean and median prices don’t seem to have been impacted on very much, being relatively stable according to the figures, which are provided by the CSO. The most recent month for which statistics are available is July and at that …

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Councillors approve Local Property Tax 15% above standard rate

CLARE County Councillors have decided to adopt a Local Property Tax (LPT) at 15% above the standard rate for next year, despite an appeal from one councillor to reduce this charge. Last year, councillors agreed to increase the LPT 15% above the standard rate and this was retained again this year without a vote following a meeting in Glór on Monday. However, councillors have warned the General Municipal Allocation (GMA) must be retained at this same level to support community projects this year, which could prove to be extremely difficult for the local authority following a huge decline in its income stream due to the devastating impact of Covid-19. Councillor Donna McGettigan proposed the council should reduce the LPT rate in view of the uncertain times facing householders some of whom were in mortgage arrears. Her proposal was not seconded or supported by any other councillor. The need to increase the GMA considering the key role it plays in the …

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Lahinch and Kilkee bask in afterglow of staycation boom

AFTER an unusually warm and sunny weekend, Kilkee was overcast and somewhat autumnal on Monday afternoon. Staycationers were fewer than they had been even 24 hours earlier, but shopkeeper Donal Hayes wasn’t complaining as he said the season which is ending has been the best one for many years. While the pandemic has crippled many businesses and even some entire industries, it has actually helped his shop. “It’s been a huge benefit to us, I hate to say it, but it was. The only poor weekend was Whit weekend, I think that was the way for the whole of the town. The summer was excellent, last weekend was as good as any over the summer. You can see today it has quietened a lot so we’ll see how it goes until the October Bank Holiday Weekend, if we can get the weekends out of it we’ll be very, very happy with that.” Asked if business would have been up five …

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Major cocaine and cannabis seizure in Spancilhill

GARDAI arrested three people and seized over €100,000 of suspected drugs in Spancilhill on Wednesday night. As part of an ongoing operation Gardaí from the Divisional Drugs Unit, assisted by the Armed Support Unit, executed a search warrant at a house in Spancilhill shortly before midnight. During the course of the search Gardaí seized €100,000 of cocaine and a quantity of cannabis herb. €1,600 of cannabis plants were also seized from a small grow house that had been set up inside the house. All of the suspected drugs will now be sent to Forensic Science Ireland for analysis. Two men, aged in their 20s and 40s, and a woman in her 30s were arrested at the scene and are currently detained at Garda Stations in Co. Clare under Section 2 of the Criminal Justice (Drug Trafficking) Act, 1996. Speaking at Ennis Garda Station today, Chief Superintendent Sean Colleran said “This is a significant seizure of suspected drugs by our Drugs …

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CAB operation in Clare and Tipperary

THE Criminal Assets Bureau (CAB), in conjunction with English police, today carried out an operation in Counties Clare and Tipperary as part of a cyber-fraud and money laundering investigation in the UK. The CAB investigation is focussed on the assets of an international organised crime group who are suspected of laundering the proceeds of mandate fraud committed in the UK via a used car outlet in County Tipperary. Searches were conducted at two residential premises and one business premises in County Clare, and two residential and one business premises in County Tipperary. The search of the one business premises in County Tipperary, a used car outlet, remains ongoing. In excess of 80 cars were seized with an approximate value of €2,000,000, along with cash in the amount of €21,000. Also more than €200,000 has been restrained in financial accounts linked to the organised criminal group. This morning’s search operation involved CAB, the Emergency Response Unit, the Stolen Motor Vehicle Investigation …

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Rineen centenary: Plaque to mark ambush and reprisals

WHILE events to mark the centenary of the Rineen ambush and the subsequent reprisals have had to be scaled back due to Covid-19, a plaque in memory of those who died on that day will be unveiled at Flanagan’s bar in Lahinch on September 22. On September 22, 1920, following the killing of six RIC men at Rineen, the military arrived in Lahinch around 2.30pm, setting fire to businesses and homes, with the blaze at Flanagan’s bar claiming the life of Pakie Lehane. Brian J O’Higgin’s is the grandson of the Flanagan couple who operated the pub in 1920.“That pub was burned, the 19th pub was burned, it was O’Dwyers then. Vaughan’s Hotel, which is now the Atlantic Hotel was burned on that night. It would have been owned by Michael Vaughan’s grandfather,” he says. “They all lost their homes and they all had to go down to the golf sandhills as they were called, and live there for a …

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Shannon GP critical of Covid plan ‘chaos and confusion’

A SHANNON GP has hit out the handling of circumstances around the health minister’s Covid-19 test last Tuesday the day it unveiled the new roadmap for living with the virus. Dr Yvonne Williams said that misunderstanding over who should isolate while a contact of theirs is awaiting a test result, smacked of “chaos and confusion”. “The advice is that while someone is awaiting results of a test, their household should restrict their movements,” she explained. “If someone has a positive test, then their contacts are advised to isolate.” On Tuesday, shortly after addressing a press conference on the Living with Covid-19 plan, Minister Stephen Donnelly felt unwell and contacted his GP to arrange a coronavirus test. Following that news, the cabinet, as well as Acting Chief Medical Officer Dr Ronan Glynn, were told to restrict their movements as a precaution. The Dáil was then adjourned, at first for a period of one week, before being reconvened later on Tuesday evening. …

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Looking forward to Brunch

Doggy Brunch for Animal Welfare Charity

With apologies to my friend Bev, I have to take over the column again this week to tell you how I spent my weekend. I was lamped into the shower early so I knew something was up but then I went to Pat, my lovely dog minder. I haven’t stayed there much since Covid began so it was nice to have a proper catch-up as I was in residence for two nights. I love a little change of scenery. On Sunday, I was collected bright and early and after a quick dogguccino, we headed off in the car. When we arrived in Limerick, I was hoping we’d be going to The Buttery, where dogs are always welcome, although I was puzzled, as we usually go on a Saturday. What a sight met me! Dogs everywhere, inside and out. It turns out that this was a Doggie Brunch in aid of Limerick Animal Welfare. What a lovely idea, although I noticed …

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