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Tag Archives: clare county council

Water quality concerns to be tackled in new plan

DECLINING water quality across Clare will be addressed in a new draft plan for the management of river basins, councillors have been told.  An overview of the process of creating a new plan for the period 2022 to 2027 was presented at a meeting of the council’s committee on Physical Development last week.  Community Water Officer for the South West, Ruairí Ó Conchúir outlined how views are being sought across the county which will feed into a national plan for protecting Ireland’s water bodies. Outlining the situation in this county, Mr Ó Conchúir noted that the percentage of ‘high status’ waterways here have fallen from 14% to 3% between 2013 and 2018. In addition, the number of water bodies rated as being in poor condition also increased by a third since 2017 “We have seen improvements in the worst of the worst, and decline in the best of the best,” he said. He added that the biggest pressures on rivers …

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Irish Water accused of throwing up roadblocks to development in Clare

IRISH Water has been accused of creating “a huge obstacle” to the development of rural Clare. At a meeting of the council’s committee on Physical Development, frustration was aired at the fact that the authority is striving to protect water quality while Irish Water is unable to provide critical infrastructure in some locations. Councillor Clare Colleran Molloy made her comments following a presentation from Ruairí Ó Conchúir of the Local Authority Waters Programme (LAWPRO). Mr Ó Conchúir outlined the pressures on waterways across the Mid-West region, after which the Fianna Fáil member asked him if he believed there is a policy problem when it comes to funding waste water treatment. Thanking Mr Ó Conchúir for his presentation, the Ennis member noted the recent criticism of Irish Water by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) over the discharge of raw sewage at a number of coastal locations. “I want your opinion on this,” she said. “Do you think a different approach needs …

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Anger as more pyrite proof sought

State accused of ‘stalling tactics’ by Clare advocate “A LITANY of broken promises” has been condemned by the founder of the Clare Pyrite Action Group, after confirmation of further delays in access to the defective blocks scheme. Dr Martina Cleary said that more than 100 homeowners in Clare will now have no option but to take legal action and engage in further protests. Despite assurances from the Housing Minister on August 27, that a decision on extending the Defective Concrete Blocks Grant Scheme would be made “within weeks”, the process has become protracted. After raising queries with the council about the cost of a technical report it submitted in July, the Department of Housing, Local Government and Heritage (DHLGH) has now sought further technical data. This added hitch has sparked anger, with Dr Cleary accusing the Department of “stalling tactics”. “The Department is now looking for additional test data and it’s clearly a delaying strategy,” she told The Champion. “I …

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Dangerous dip on busy rural road

ONGOING concerns about the condition of the main road from Ennis through East Clare have been highlighted by Councillor Alan O’Callaghan. He told the November meeting of the Killaloe district committee of a bad dip on the R352 close to Henchy’s Cross where larger vehicles are experiencing problems. “The location is just as you’re coming from Clooney towards Henchy’s junction on the regional road,” he said. “There’s a section where the road is narrow with a dip and a jump. I first noticed when I saw a man in front of me with jeep and trailer. There was no speed involved. The trailer jumped a fine height into air. “Maybe the road has gone down a bit. It’s not on any works programme. Can something be done sooner rather than later? This is a busy thoroughfare from Scariff to Ennis, with lots of HGVs and agricultural vehicles using it. There’s a fine jolt off it when you hit it at …

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Christmas market is on but lights switch-on stays virtual

ORGANISERS of this year’s Christmas Market in Ennis have stated the event is going ahead. Confirmation comes after the official switch-on of Ennis’ Christmas lights, planned for this Friday in Abbey Street, has been replaced with a virtual switch-on. From December 2 to 5 Abbey Street Carpark will be transformed into a festive Christmas Village with live entertainment, creative crafts and food along with a vintage carousel, Christmas-themed amusements and other festive surprises. An estimated 10,000 people visited over the three-day event in 2019. Organisers say they are hopeful that by extending the event by an extra day this year, it will facilitate an anticipated increase in numbers. The appetite for live events has increased and to comply with government and public health guidelines an extra day is likely to be necessary. Thousands of people had been expected to turn out for the official switch-on of the county capital’s Christmas lights this Friday. However Clare County Council made the “difficult …

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Clare businesses could face 3.8% rates hike in 2022 Budget

CLARE businesses may be hit with a 3.8% increase in commercial rates, if local county councillors approve the first hike since 2009 in the Draft 2022 Budget at a meeting this Friday, writes Dan Danaher. With Clare County Council’s overall expenditure projected to increase to €138.6 million in 2022, up €7.8 million on the previous year, it is expected this proposed rates increase will generate an additional €1.3 million in revenue, if it is approved. The Clare Champion has learned that councilllors were presented with this proposed commercial rates increase at a recent briefing. In total, 3,430 occupied properties generated €37.2 million in commercial property rates in 2021. Ten levied properties pay more than €20 million. This income comes from energy generation plants, windfarms, global utility networks, national retailers and large industry. The balance of about €17 million is levied across 96% of properties in the county. While income from extra properties or new builds will generate an extra €1.15 …

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Clare County Council wins Chambers Ireland excellence award

CLARE County Council has won a Chambers Ireland award for an initiative that identifies opportunities to improve communities’ quality of life and advance economic development. The 2021 Excellence in Local Government (ELG) Award was earned for an initiative to restructure its four Municipal Districts (MDs) of Ennis, Killaloe, Shannon and West Clare. The Council’s winning entry was entitled ‘Restructuring of Municipal Districts to improve community and economic outcomes’. The restructuring initiative involved the realignment of staff structures at MD level in Clare County Council to identify and advance opportunities for economic development and to improve the quality of life of communities in County Clare. Under the initiative, a senior staff member – Senior Executive Officer (SEO) – was assigned to each of the MDs, and each MD was assigned to a Director of Service. The overall objectives of the restructuring were to: identify and develop sustainable solutions to enhance the wellbeing and quality of life of local communities; advance opportunities …

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Council hails community spirit as Ennis celebrates Tidy Towns success

THE Cathaoirleach of Clare County Council, Councillor PJ Ryan, and the Mayor of Ennis Municipal District, Cllr Ann Norton, have welcomed the news that Ennis has been named Ireland’s Tidiest Town 2021 and commended all those involved in achieving the prestigious accolade. Minister for Rural and Community Development, Heather Humphreys TD, announced the win at a ceremony in the RDS, Dublin last week. Ennis was judged to be the best from 847 entries to the SuperValu TidyTowns competition, which has been in existence since 1958. Ennis first entered the competition in 1959 and has won the competition on one occasion previously, in 2005. Cathaoirleach of Clare County Council, Councillor PJ Ryan, said the award reflects the collaborative approach taken by the local community and business sectors in Ennis, and said the local authority is delighted to partner with Clare’s community group. “I want to acknowledge the year-round work that is done by Ennis Tidy Towns and commend them on achieving …

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