A number of councillors in the Castlebar Municipal District hit out at the slow pace of getting works done in the area at the October meeting of Mayo County Council this week. Independent councillor Michael Kilcoyne lashed out saying: "It's backwards we're going. To try to get work done is really impossible. Down in Curradrish, which is just outside this town, the footpaths there were started by the town council, two and half years ago and the work still isn't finished, and that's shameful. People who go out for a walk around that area, walking on broken chippings, there have been a number of accidents and there will be a number of claims to this council. I don't know what's happening, it has to be done. I've been given several assurances and if it's not done then, we'll fill the seats there [public gallery] with people from that area, meeting after meeting at this and at the Municipal District until it is done. Because it's not good enough and it's not right and promises were made and the money is allocated."
He was supported by Fianna Fáil councillor Blackie Gavin who added: "The Curradrish Road, the old town council provided the money for that and planned out footpaths to be put in place and public lighting and the road to be widened, in 2014 the last county council provided some money to surface the road. Two months ago Cllr Kilcoyne was on the radio and promised the people of that area that the road would start within the week. I'm getting awful frustrated as a councillor."
He went on to say: "I'm glad that Cllr Kilcoyne raised this issue to day. It's disgraceful that the money has been provided by the town council since 2009 and Mayo County Council and the road hasn't been finished yet. There is something awful wrong with it and when you ask for a simple job, the simple jobs that the councillors are asking to be done, why aren't they being done? I'm highly offended being a member of this council that these jobs aren't being done, and what have these officials against the county councillors that are elected by the people of these areas. It should not have to be raised here on this floor and it should be done in the Muncipal Areas, but we have to."
Independent councillor Frank Durcan joined in saying: "I agree, I'm in the same position, I've stopped promising people after getting it confirmed by the executive of the council that a job will be completed. Because you're telling them lies, the people think we're telling them lies, no councillor should find themselves in that position due to the fact that the executive of this council will not carry out the work, the top executive of this council is well paid and we're their bosses.
Mayo County Council chief executive, Peter Hynes, responded to the councillors saying: "As regards some of things not being done adequately by our staff, there is a forum for dealing with those and part of the intent of setting up municipal districts is that funds would be allocated and budgets would allocated, work programmes would be agreed and they would be adopted, so I would suggest that if work is not being done at local level it should be done there. If there is a consistent problem I will take it on board, it should happen there [at Municipal District level]."