Home » Tag Archives: PJ Kelly

Tag Archives: PJ Kelly

Renovate derelict Clare buildings as public toilets, says Kelly

DERELICT buildings in rural towns and villages could be adapted to provide public toilet facilities, according to a local councillor. Councillor P J Kelly called on Clare County Council to provide grant aid to community groups who wish to enhance existing leisure facilities by providing low-cost toilet facilities. Speaking at a recent local authority meeting, Councillor Kelly outlined community facilities could be refurbished to include public toilets at a low cost compared with providing new standalone public conveniences. The long-serving Fianna Fáil Councillor thanked the council for maintaining the public toilets in Lissycasey, which are widely used by locals and visitors. He was supported by Councillor Cillian Murphy who stressed people were looking for facilities to help them access walking routes and mountains. Instead of building new facilities, he proposed that the council should look at existing facilities in local communities such as GAA clubs that already have car parks, changing rooms, toilets and showers. Last year, Councillor Murphy recalled …

Read More »

Council spending over €100k per week on consultants

WELL over €10.6 million was spent on professional consultancy fees on Clare County Council projects in 2019 and 2020. At the February meeting of the local authority, Councillor PJ Kelly sought information on professional consultancy fees in 2019 and 2020, and a subsequent report from the Council’s Director of Finance Noeleen Fitzgerald showed that €5.21 million had been spent on such fees in 2019 and €5.48 million the following year. However, she said the 2020 figure might yet rise further, as it only reflects costs processed so far. “It is important to note that approximately 85% of the overall costs for both years relate to capital projects that are fully funded and primarily recouped from grant income as part of our capital works programme. These costs do not therefore form part of our Revenue operational budget. “25% of the overall costs in both years relate to the SHIP Social Housing Investment Programme where we have a number of local authority …

Read More »

Safety works for Cranny Cross

A DANGEROUS stretch of road in West Clare will be upgraded, members of the local municipal district have been told. Following a number of serious accidents and representations by public representatives, a junction known as Cranny Cross, has been identified as in need of safety improvement works. The matter was raised by Councillor PJ Kelly at the most recent meeting of the West Clare Municipal District, when he called on Transport Infrastructure Ireland (TII) and Clare County Council to address the issues at the junction of the N68 and L2138. “This is a high-risk area,” he said, “and there’s an average of one accident a year there. One accident has been fatal and another has left a person invalided for life. There is a solution, a local farmer is prepared to cooperate to get this work done.” Councillor Kelly welcomed the reply from Senior Executive Engineer John Gannon who said TII’s Road safety inspection programme (HD17) had identified that the …

Read More »

Kelly chalenges council’s legal spending

If Clare County Council were a private company, it would be insolvent and its directors fired, Councillor PJ Kelly claimed at this week’s meeting of the local authority. He made his comments while discussing legal costs incurred by the council, having sought information about costs awarded to and against the council regarding court proceedings over the last five years. The information he sought was not available and a written reply said it “will take time to compile this information and, should the councillor require, this information can be collated over the coming weeks”. Councillor Kelly said the council has “very scarce finances” currently, while he noted that €100,000 had been spent on the council’s entrance door. He added that the council is open for 250 days in the year and that the legal expenses incurred averages at in excess of €3,000 per day. “That would be high wages for 15 people; I can’t accept that it is justified,” he commented. …

Read More »

Lissycasey garda cover ‘doubled’

THE Garda service in Lissycasey has “doubled” since the local station closed on March 1, according to the county’s most senior garda officer. Chief Superintendent John Kerin was speaking after a meeting in Lissycasey with a 12-person delegation representing local organisations. The group was seeking to transfer Lissycasey from the Kilrush Garda Division to the Ennis division. This has been turned down for now, although it will be subject to review. The Lissycasey station closure coincided with the reopening of Kilmihil Garda Station on the same date. “In most cases, the closure of a garda station results in a diminution of garda services. What has occurred here is that they will have more than double the garda service that they had before this. I also stressed at the meeting that Lissycasey is in a more enviable situation than any other rural area that I know in Clare. There are about 12 gardaí, who are based in Ennis, Kilrush or other …

Read More »

Councillors distribute €50k at ‘secret’ meeting

CLARE County Council is to seek legal advice on the status of a behind-closed-doors in-committee meeting, held by West Clare county councillors, at which €50,000 of public money was allocated to two disability projects in Kilrush and Kildysart. Both projects were granted €25,000 and details of the meeting and the decision made at it only emerged publicly at a West Clare Municipal District meeting this week.Since then, Clare County Council has said they are not in a position to release the minutes of the in-committee meeting until they receive “legal clarification on the status of the minutes”. At Tuesday’s meeting, Councillor Richard Nagle, who was unable to attend the contentious meeting on October 20, described the holding of the meeting as “reprehensible and regrettable”. He queried why the meeting was held in private with the media absent. “Why was that meeting held in-committee? It was an issue deciding on the allocation of public money,” he stated. Municipal area chairman, Councillor …

Read More »

Councillors vote for 15% reduction in property tax

CLARE  county councillors have voted to slash the Local Property Tax (LPT) by 15% following a special meeting of theb local authority on Friday morning. An alliance of Fianna Fáil councillors and some members of the so-called Technical Group ensured the maximum reduction will be passed on to property owners in Clare next January after it was passed by 17 votes to ten. The reduction, which prompted some heated exchanges during the meeting, was supported by 11 Fianna Fáil councillors, Sinn Féin Councillor Mike McKee as well as Independents Gerry Flynn, James Breen, Ann Norton, Michael Begley and P J Ryan. Two members of the Technical Group – long serving Independent councillor Christy Curtin and Ian Lynch broke ranks by opting to oppose the cut with eight Fine Gael councillors. The council’s chief executive, Tom Coughlan told councillors in a report on the “Local Property Tax Local Adjustment Factor” a sum of €1.56 million would be available for additional services …

Read More »

West Clare demands one-third share of budget

THE first chairman of the new West Clare Municipal Authority is seeking at least 33% of Clare County Council’s budget to be spent in the west and north of the county. Councillor PJ Kelly was elected chairman of the body at last Friday’s AGM, attended by all eight of the recently elected county councillors, who serve in the enlarged West Clare constituency. The meeting also decided to restrict to six the number of the public who can attend the bi-monthly meetings, while senior engineer, Cyril Feeney, acknowledged the council is facing challenges in adequately staffing the district, which stretches from Loop Head to Ballyvaughan. Councillor Kelly produced figures which he said proved Clare County Council collected millions of euro in rates from West Clare. “The county council takes in €36.2m in rates. Ennis takes in €5.4m and Kilrush €0.7m. That comes to a grand county-wide figure of approximately €42m. One establishment in West Clare, ESB Moneypoint, pays €13m. That is …

Read More »