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Tag Archives: Deputy Cathal Crowe

High-Speed Rural Broadband Connections Are On Track

THE first high-speed fibre connections to rural homes in Clare as part of the rollout of the National Broad Plan (NBP) will be made before the end of the year, Communications Minister Eamon Ryan has pledged. In response to parliamentary questions from Deputy Joe Carey and Deputy Cathal Crowe, Minister Ryan confirmed design work “is complete or ongoing” in Clare and 20 other counties. Deputy Carey asked the Communications Minister to outline his plans to accelerate the National Broadband Plan (NBP) to facilitate remote working in homes and business in Clare, while Deputy Crowe asked a similar question about the roll out of the NBP in the county. Around 91,000 premises across the country had been surveyed as part of the €3bn plan to deliver high speed broadband to rural Ireland by September 15, according to Minister Ryan. In Clare, the minister confirmed to the two deputies that surveys have already commenced in Cratloe, Ballycannan, Ballyglas and Cloghrea. Further surveys …

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Minister slated over stance on defective Clare homes

SHARP criticism has been directed at the minister for housing, after he refused to help to Clare homeowners who believe their properties are affected by defective building materials containing pyrite or mica. One local TD has estimated that over 40 people in this county may be affected by the materials which can cause severe structural damaged to buildings, and that many others have not yet come forward. Following the setting up last month of the Clare Pyrite Action Group, the personal experiences of a number of homeowners across the county have been reported by The Champion. The situation in this county was raised in Dáil Éireann last week by Deputy Cathal Crowe and the Sinn Féin housing spokesperson Eoin Ó Broin, with Housing Minister Darragh O’Brien ruling out any extension to Clare of the existing remediation schemes. Dr Martina Cleary, the founder of the action group, has hit out at the fact that Minister O’Brien when in opposition, slated the …

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New petition seeks overhaul of public school transport

A LISSYCASEY father whose child was recently adversely impacted by the concessionary selection system for public school transport has devised a new petition to spearhead radical reform. Up to 15 pupils from Lissycasey and surrounding areas had their places on a bus to St John Bosco Community College withdrawn at the start of the school year because of antiquated boundary rules, which deemed them ineligible and put them on the concessionary list. West Clare pupils will get their place on a bus after a new contractor was appointed last week with a larger vehicle. Ciaran O’Flaherty is gravely concerned about the Bus Eireann school transport policy currently in place, in relation to “eligible” and “concessionary” categorisation, as the sole means to complete selection. Mr O’Flaherty believes the current policy is unfair, unethical, unreasonable and divisive, creating real divide in rural communities and resulted in the recent West Clare “Bus Fiasco”. Requesting Bus Eireann to abolish the two-tier system, he is …

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Work starts at new Lidl food discount store in Westbury

SITE preparations works are underway for the development of a new multi-million Euro food discount store in South-East Clare following a recent An Bord Pleanála ruling. Work has begun with the construction of a major new Lidl store at Westbury with workers clearing and excavating the ground for the pouring of foundations. The project was given the green light by An Bord Pleanála in July, after it sent to the planning appeals authority following a number of submissions to Clare County Council. The store will be located across from the Westbury estate, which is the largest in the county, with almost 1,000 homes and a sizeable population, while the site is on one of the busiest arteries into Limerick City. Welcoming this development, Deputy Cathal Crowe said it is fantastic to see that the shovel has broken the ground on this long-awaited development. “One of the key things I worked on during this process was the guarantee that road improvement …

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Political answers sought to Clare ‘pyrite’ issues

POLITICAL answers are being sought on behalf of a number of Clare homeowners whose properties are affected by what they believe to be defective building materials like pyrite and mica. The plight of Geraldine Kennedy of Parteen, which was highlighted in last week’s Clare Champion, prompted a visit from Deputy Cathal Crowe, who said he had been able to put his fingers into the cracks in the wall because they were so wide. Deputy Crowe has since tabled two questions to the Minister for Housing, Planning and Local Government, on behalf of Geraldine and several other homeowners. “There are as many as 42 confirmed cases in Clare,” he said, “and many more suspected cases. My first question for the minister is to explain the options available to homeowners here. The existing schemes are very county-specific. We will need the buy in of Clare County Council on this, but I don’t foresee a major difficulty in that respect.” Deputy Crowe said …

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Breakthrough in West Clare school bus dispute

THERE has been a breakthrough in the dispute between angry West Clare parents and Bus Eireann over the withdrawal of concessionary places for bus transport to a secondary school in Kildysart. Up to 15 pupils from Lissycasey and surrounding areas had their places on a bus to St John Bosco Community College withdrawn because of antiquated boundary rules, which deemed them ineligible and put them on the concessionary list. West Clare pupils can now return to the bus after a new contractor was appointed with a larger vehicle. This comes in the wake of an intensive lobbying campaign by frustrated and parents and public representatives including Deputy Cathal Crowe and Deputy Violet-Anne Wynne, Deputy Crowe said the larger vehicle enables the route to be fully compliant from a socially distant point of view and also meant the increased capacity is now there for those additional 15 pupils, with their parents getting notified on Thursday. “I’ve spoken with some of the …

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Growing concern over possible transfer of Aer Lingus aircraft from Shannon

SHANNON Airport looks set for yet another body blow following reports that Aer Lingus are considering moving their transatlantic services to the United Kingdom. Aer Lingus have a number of aircraft based in Shannon and two of them are A321, which is a narrow bodied aircraft with long range with a smaller capacity than bigger A330. They are ideal for long haul flights from Shannon as they are cheaper to run than other aircraft and can take smaller numbers of passengers. It understood some English airports have indicated they are interested in hosting these aircraft and developing transatlantic services from these locations. A Shannon Group spokesperson said the group is in ongoing discussions with Aer Lingus regarding the resumption of its Heathrow and transatlantic operations. “These long established services have been hugely successful and their resumption is critical for business and tourism across western and southern regions. “These and other services have been suspended due to advice against non-essential travel …

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Oireachtas members concerned over threat of nurses’s industrial action

FEARS have been expressed about the serious implications any strike at University Hospital Limerick will have on patient care following the decision of the INMO to ballot for industrial action. Deputy Michael McNamara recalled there have been calls in recent months to reduce overcrowding in UHL and the need to increase medical facilities in smaller hospitals such as and Ennis and Nenagh Hospitals. The chairman of the Covid-19 Special Dáil Committee stressed the time for talking about these improvements was now over and it was time that action is taken to address serious shortcomings in UHL. If necessary, Deputy McNamara said Health Minister Stephen Donnelly should be asked to intervene to prevent the threatened strike. Deputy Violet Anne-Wynne called on Health Minister Donnelly to intervene in a bid to avert the threatened strike. She called for a recruitment campaign in UHL as staff like porters and cleaners are experiencing staff shortages. “I am shocked Minister Donnelly hasn’t stepped in already …

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