The embargo preventing local authorities from recruiting staff is having a serious effect on the public, as it is preventing many elderly people from getting essential repairs to their homes.
This is the view of Fine Gael Galway West TD Pádraic McCormack. He is calling on the Government to lift that embargo, thereby allowing the Galway city and county council employ more staff to deal with the issues that come up on a day to day basis.
“I was dealing with a case recently where a person had applied for a grant for repairs to his roof under Housing Aid for the Elderly Scheme,” said Dep McCormack. “During the recent wet weather water was pouring into his kitchen. Someone from the Council went out to inspect the situation and the proposed works to be carried out.
“Despite his contact with the Council and several phone calls from me I have been informed that because the technician who was dealing with these matters has now left, the council does not have a replacement technician to send out to inspect proposed works to be carried out.”
Dep McCormack said “hundreds of applicants” will be denied the grants because no one is available from the local authority to inspect the work.
“This obviously suits the Department of Environment whereby grants were sanctioned but no money will have to be paid out,” he said. “People in dire situations waiting for repairs are being penalised in being unable to have the necessary repairs carried out. This is an intolerable situation.”