Mayo Fine Gael TD John O’Mahony has described the imminent establishment of a joint policing committee in Ballina as a hugely significant development for the town. A public meeting will be held in the town shortly at which details of the committee will be outlined.
Deputy O’Mahony, who will also be a member of the newly formed committee, said the committee will have real powers. “Its remit will be quite broad and will cover areas such as patterns of crime, anti-social behaviour and misuse of alcohol and drugs. It will also refer to the broader issue of the underlying factors that contribute to crime in the town,” he said.
He added the establishment of the committee should not be taken as a signal that Ballina is a “no-go” area or that crime is rampant in the town. “Ballina is no different to any other town of its size in Ireland. It has its problems but they pale into insignificance when compared with all the positive influences that are at work within the community. What the JPC will attempt to do is make the town of Ballina an even safer place to live and work in and that is an admirable aim for any community,” said Dep O’Mahony, who also paid tribute to the role played by Councillor Mark Winters in the establishment of the body.