Public should be consulted on major projects — Harkin

The public should be consulted on major capital expenditures, such as the €3.2 billion investment by EirGrid in a number of infrastructural projects.

That is according to Independent MEP Marian Harkin, who said the harsh austerity measures imposed on Irish people over the last five years should have earned them the right to have more of a say in plannng and spending.

“As the Irish people face into further erosion of their quality of life they have every right to be consulted on large scale capital expenditures that they will ultimately have to pay for,” said Ms Harkin.

“For example, no independent justification has been produced to prioritise investment in the national electricity grid. In a situation where demand for electricity will not meet originally made forecasts, and where cost of production will severely hamper the prospect of power exports, there must be absolute clarification on the need for the proposed expenditure of €3.2 billion on electricity grid enhancement,” she continued.

“It is the consumer who will have to provide this funding and the least the public deserves before further erosion of their incomes is a full cost benefit analysis to justify the proposed €3.2 billion expenditure.

“The time is past when the public have to accept the word of ‘experts’ on what is necessary investment in infrastructure.”

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