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Busy Christmas at dog shelter

AS fundraising efforts kick off for the development of a new Clare County dog shelter, warden Frankie Coote has described the Christmas period as one of his busiest yet. In the weeks leading up to Christmas, local organisation Rover Rescue, led by dog trainer and groomer Deirdre Ryan, sent a number of dogs from the county pound to be re-homed in Wales, with more dogs set to leave the country in the coming weeks. Deirdre, who has helped nearly 500 dogs find new homes in the past three years, hopes a recent grant of funding will mean even more dogs can be helped in the future.According to Mr Coote, “Christmas was one of our busiest, we worked every day over the Christmas and the figures are up. What we have noticed is that people are not in a financial position now to keep their dogs and they’re ringing us to come and take them. As bad as that is, it’s …

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BID plan would mean extra rate for businesses

THE creation of a Business Improvement District (BID) in Ennis would involve the levying of an additional rate on the business community, something which town manager Ger Dollard believes would be difficult in the current economic climate.A BID is a public/private partnership in which business owners elect to make a collective contribution to the maintenance, development and promotion of their commercial district.At this week’s meeting of Ennis Town Council, Councillor Johnny Flynn urged the council to consider a BID for Ennis. “There is an urgent need for Ennis to protect and grow jobs and deal with the scourge of unemployment and emigration. The rise in unemployment figures is having a huge effect on our young people and this could give a sense of hope.”He outlined that a group involved in a BID, if for example they wanted to develop a festival, would pay a sum equivalent to 4% of their rate into a separate fund to be used for the …

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Ennis continues to climb up the litter league table

ENNIS Tidy Towns chairman Noel Crowley has described Ennis’ position on the Irish Business Against Litter (IBAL) table as “positive”. The county town moved up six places to 16th in the national littler league. “In the Tidy Towns as we are always in the top echelon, and we would like to be at the top of IBAL,” he said.Mr Crowley was speaking following the release of the latest IBAL league table, which put Ennis at joint 16 out of 53 towns and cities surveyed across Ireland. Ennis was classified as Clean to European Norms in the survey, ranked the same as Ballina and Nenagh.An Taisce, who conduct the IBAL litter surveys, outlined in its report on Ennis, “Another satisfactory result but not as good as the Tidy Towns. Neither the Limerick or Galway approach roads are Clean to European Norms. Over half of the sites surveyed in Ennis got the top litter grade, these sites were not just clear of …

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No plans for museum at McParland’s building

THE opening of a museum in the historic McParland’s building on Parnell Street could not go ahead at the moment but will be considered in the future, members of Ennis Town Council have been told.The building, which is currently undergoing major conservation work, does not belong to the town council and its owner, Irene Clune, expects to return to the property when the works have been completed. However, the council have stated that the suggestion to create a museum on the site will be borne in mind for any future use of the property.Councillor Paul O’Shea told this week’s meeting of the council that funding should be sought for the opening of a medieval museum at McParland’s and he emphasised its historical importance. Town manager Ger Dollard told the meeting that the council is aware the building is one of “great significance”.He outlined the conservation works that are currently in progress on the McParland’s property have established that an increased …

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Joshua determined to be a new year baby

  IT was certainly a very happy new year for proud Clarecastle parents Vicky and Chris Howard as they welcomed little Joshua into the world on New Year’s Day.Weighing in at five pounds 10 ounces, the little bundle of joy arrived five weeks early at the Mid-Western Regional Maternity Hospital, Limerick at 2.36pm on Sunday.A delighted Vicky said from the hospital, “He was five weeks early. He wasn’t due until February 3 but he was determined to be a new year’s baby. We weren’t prepared, I had no bag packed or anything. I was a bit worried when we drove down to the hospital on Saturday night because he was early but the staff are brilliant and they put me at ease very quickly.”Although he was an early arrival, Joshua is thriving, with mother and son expected to return home from hospital on Friday. “He’s doing great, everything went perfect,” Vicky said. Looking forward to welcoming home the new addition …

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Rates collection falls below acceptable level

RATE payers in the town have been urged to pay up if they can, amid warnings a reduction in the amount of money collected next year by Ennis Town Council could result in a cut in services. At this week’s annual budget meeting of Ennis Town Council, it emerged that 60% of commercial rates were collected last year. Councillors were told between 85% and 90% of rates would need to be collected in 2012 for the council to balance its budget.At the meeting it was agreed, amongst other measures, to maintain parking charges at their current level of €1.30 and commercial rates at the level adopted in 2009 of €65.45.Town manager Ger Dollard described this year’s budget as “difficult” adding “we have made choices we think are right for Ennis and the future”.He said the local authority is “hugely conscious of the issues out there and the issues facing the commercial sector and the need to support economic activity and …

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