Half of the Department of Agriculture staff currently working in Galway city are moving to new premises in Athenry, a move which a local TD says will save €1 million in rent.
The new facility will be located on the Mellow’s Campus in Athenry. Fine Gael Galway East TD Paul Connaughton said the move makes “economic sense” as the staff can be accommodated “at much less cost to the exchequer” in the new premises.
“It is critical that as much money as possible is saved from the administration budget of the Department of Agriculture to ensure that the funding for farm schemes is maximised,” he said.
He said the move also makes sense in practical terms. “The building in Dockgate was completely unsuitable as it was most difficult to access,” he said. “Farmers will find it much easier to access a building in Athenry.”
However Dep Connaughton wants to see all staff relocated to Athenry in the coming years.
“I would be very disappointed if the full complement of staff is not moving to Athenry, but I believe that this is a step in the right direction,” he said. “This relocation is a welcome boost for Athenry, as it will bring new jobs to the town and see increased visits from farmers across the county as they visit the Department building