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The members of Ballina Town Council took another step towards the opening of the Jackie Clarke Library in the town with the passing of a part eight report on the project put before them at their monthly meeting this week. The part eight report which was put out for public consideration last year saw one submission which came from three sons of Jackie Clarke received by the council in relation to the proposed project. Independent councillor Peter Clarke, who is also a son of Jackie Clarke, excused himself from discussion on the report saying: “It might be perceived that I have a conflict of interest in this matter, but I’d like to put it on the record that myself and my mother would hope that you do the right thing in relation to this.”
There were no ‘real’ emergencies unattended to by Mayo County Council during the bad weather which brought the country to a standstill over the Christmas period and beyond, and it was “no harm that we had to stay inside and talk to each other”, a senior council official said on Wednesday evening.
With a large workload being placed on Mayo County Council outdoor staff to repair damage caused during the recent cold snap, the members of the Ballina electoral area expressed their anger that the council is not allowed to replace retiring staff. The issue was raised by Fine Gael Councillor Eddie Staunton. “I recently attended a retirement function in Crossmolina where four members of the outdoor staff in this area had retired,” Cllr Staunton told the meeting. “Unfortunately another member of the outdoor staff has also died recently. That is five outdoor staff that this council are not allowed to replace. How can the council be expected to provide the services to the people if they are five people down on where they were last year?”
Councillor Robert Troy has been granted a renewal of his auctioneer’s licence months after it went out of date.
Independent Ballina county councillor Gerry Ginty this week hit out at planners’ interpretation of planning guidelines at the Ballina electoral area meeting. The meeting was discussing two planning applications. Planners had cited the visual impact of the house as a reason for the refusal.
The condition of the roads in the Ballina area after the recent cold spell led to a lengthy discussion at this week’s Ballina electoral area meeting. “The national roads inspector was in the area yesterday (Tuesday), to see the damage that has been caused,” senior engineer for Mayo County Council Noel Burke told the meeting. “We have asked him to allow us to be as flexible as possible with the local road grants that we have applied for. We hope they will let us be discretionary on where we spend the money rather than just rely on the list of priorities we sent up before the cold spell set in.”
Based on a Labour Party survey of water charges in each local authority area, schools in Castlebar and around the county could face an average increase of 100 per cent in their water bills if water conservation measures are not introduced immediately according to Labour Councillor Harry Barrett.