Mayo Fine Gael election candidate, Councillor Michelle Mulherin, is demanding answers from Ballina Town Council on its progress in taking in charge private housing estates in the town.
Cllr Mulherin says it is unacceptable that people who are paying expensive mortgages and rent should be left in the lurch and unable to be told by the Town Council as to when their estate will be taken over by the local authority. “It is outrageous the condition of roads, paths, public lighting, sewers and drains in some private estates and in some cases for quite a long time. It is both unsatisfactory and frustrating when residents contact the Council in relation to these common areas and public services that they cannot be readily assisted but instead are referred to a developer who may or may not be interested in addressing the problems”, said Cllr Mulherin.
At the last meeting of Ballina Town Council where there are 35 estates in this predicament Cllr Mulherin made progress in her efforts to find a solution to the problem. She succeeded in having a motion passed that calls on the Town Manager furnish to the elected members (of Ballina Town Council ) an up to date report detailing progress made in the taking in charge of the various estates in the town area (by the council ) and the issues outstanding with priority to be given to older estates.” The Town Engineer has accepted to do this and Cllr Mulherin is hopeful the many frustrated residents will soon be able to find out where they stand.
Cllr Mulherin said the matter is complicated by various issues such as instances of building bonds having been let lapse, cash deposits paid by some developers not being sufficient and in some cases the developer no longer in business. “There is a gap in legislation which did not place the responsibility on the council to monitor construction works while in progress. It is my belief that ultimately the Minister for Environment and local Government will have to intervene.”
The Cllr concluded that she is “working tirelessly to find a solution. It is not acceptable that people who are paying expensive mortgages and rent should be left in the lurch in this way.”