Galway politicians were among a group of 15 Independent TDs seeking Government help for Ireland's airports, in particular Shannon, Knock, Kerry, Donegal and Cork airports.
Catherine Connolly (Galway West ), Michael Fitzmaurice (Roscommon Galway ), Sean Canney, (Galway East ), Noel Grealish, (Galway West ), and Denis Naughten (Roscommon Galway ) planned to introduce a Private Members Motion to the Dáil yesterday seeking a range of Government interventions to offset “the imminent crisis facing Irish airports.”
The group is calling on the Government to implement in full the recommendations of the Aviation Recovery Taskforce, prepare a new national aviation policy that recognises the importance of regional connectivity to balanced and more sustainable regional development, revise Fáilte Ireland objectives to include attracting tourists to fly directly into the State’s regional airports, andacknowledge Shannon Airport’s traditional role as Ireland’s transit airport and the reduced carbon-emissions of intercontinental flights from the airport due to its longer runway and in acknowledgement thereof limit fifth-freedom rights to airlines using Shannon Airport for intercontinental transit flights.
In addition to group wants the Government to develop a testing regime for passengers to and from both Orange and Red listed destinations in the EU in order to fully implement the spirit of the recent European Council Recommendation on a co-ordinated approach to the restriction of free movement in response to the Covid-19 pandemic.
It believes financial assistance to both Shannon and Cork airports be increased "in recognition of the precarious financial position of airports outside Dublin".
“We are also asking Government to recognise that transatlantic flights to and from Shannon can be operated with a reduced carbon footprint per passenger to those operated from Dublin Airport and also the unsustainability of an ever-increasing proportion of tourists to Ireland flying into Dublin Airport whence they are being bussed to other regions of the State.”