Mullingar councillors angry with public lighting supplier

A number of councillors voiced disappointment with electricity supplier Aerticity in the chamber this week (January 18 ) after it was revealed the company was refusing to meet elected representatives to discuss issues of street lighting.

At the last meeting of the Mullingar area commitee, some of the councillors were not happy with the standard of public lighting around the town but were told it was no longer the council’s responsibility because it had entered into a contract in 2007 with Aertricity to maintain the town’s lights.

After writing to the company after the last meeting, local director of services, George Lambden, read the reply to the chamber in which Aertricity said it couldn’t meet with any of the elected representatives of Mullingar because of “prior commitments”.

“That response is an insult to us and to the people who voted for us,” said Cllr Ken Glynn.

“This is supposed to be a partnership. We can meet them any time. They can set the time.Are they brave enough to face us?”

“Their executives have steadfastly refused to meet elected members of Westmeath County Council,” said Cllr Mick Dollard.

“In 2007 the council had entered a programme for public lighting and it hasn’t been dealt with.

“Are they getting paid by Westmeath County Council for a service they’re not providing?” he asked.

“I think the time for niceities is over,” said Cllr Aidan Davitt. “I propose sending a stern letter to tell them we’re reviewing our service options.”

“The lights are a problem in Kinnegad,” said Cllr Denis Leonard. “It leads to a lot of anti-social behaviour.”

Cllr Fintan Cooney wanted to know if any other local authorities were having the same diffficulties with Aertricity but no answer was forthcoming from the executive at this meeting and the issue was left unresolved.

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