Classifieds Advertise Archive Subscriptions Family Announcements Photos Digital Editions/Apps
Connect with us

News

City Council facing €5m budget deficit

Published

on

Galway City Hall

Galway City Council is facing a budget deficit of €5m this year due to councillors repeatedly bowing to requests for funding making the gap between income and expenditure “virtually unbridgeable” for officials.
City Chief Executive Brendan McGrath was arguing his case for a retention of Local Property Tax for next year at current levels, which councillors have discretion to vary up or down by up to 15%.
A decrease of 15% – as proposed by Sinn Féin Councillor Mairéad Farrell – would have cut the council’s coffers by €1.2m and would have returned €33.75 to 77% of property owners in the city.
Mr McGrath said he was not exaggerating when saying the gap was virtually unbridgeable between the amount the city had to spend and the money it was bringing in – 7% more than the budget allowed.
He asked where he would find the €400,000 in staff costs needed to run the two new community centres in Knocknacarra and Ballinfoile.
The main pedestrian thoroughfare through the city was “in diabolical order” and needed serious investment. Rusheen Bay would be washed away without investing €12m in an upgrade. An offer of €3.5m in funding for capital projects from the Northern and Western Regional Assembly (NWRA) would have to matched and built within three years if it was to be successful.
The European Capital of Culture 2020 bid would also take serious amounts of money to win, but would be a game changer if successful and well worth the investment for the future.
“I can’t wave a magic wand and make it happen unless you provide the money,” he exclaimed.
Cllr Farrell’s motion – supported by two party colleagues and independents Catherine Connolly and Mike Cubbard – fell after Cllr Donal Lyons’ motion to retain the same LPT received 16 votes in favour.

For more on this story, see the Galway City Tribune.

Connacht Tribune

Confusion reigns – but publicans continue serving pints outdoors

Published

on

Galway City publicans continued this week to serve alcohol in newly created on-street outdoor dining sections – despite warnings from Gardaí that it was against licensing laws.

The local branch of the Vintners Federation of Ireland (VFI) said it is hoping Government will, if necessary, introduce legislation that facilitates pubs serving alcohol in public spaces reclaimed for outdoor hospitality.

On Friday last, our sister newspaper, Galway City Tribune revealed that Gardaí had visited a number of city pubs warning they were not legally permitted to serve alcohol outdoors in temporary on-street seating areas created by Galway City Council.

Publicans were told that if they continued to flout the rules, files would be sent to the DPP.

When the crux subsequently hit the national headlines, Justice Minister Heather Humphreys urged Gardaí to ‘use their discretion’.

“The overwhelming majority of licensed premises are operating safely, and we in Government are determined to continue to support them. If local issues arise, I would urge local authorities, Gardaí and businesses to engage.

“However, I will also examine whether further measures are required from Government. Licensing law is a complex area but I have spoken to the Attorney General this morning and we will take further action if necessary,” Minister Humphreys said.

Read the full story in this week’s Connacht Tribune, on sale in shops now. Or you can download the digital edition from www.connachttribune.ie

Continue Reading

Connacht Tribune

Apple plans second bite at Athenry data centre

Published

on

An artist's impression of the proposed Apple Data Centre.

Apple intends to have another bite at plans to build a data centre in Athenry.  Apple Operations Europe has applied to Galway County Council for more time to construct a controversial data centre on a greenfield site at Derrydonnell.

The company said it will identify “interested parties to develop the project” between now and 2026 to meet global growth in demand for data storage facilities.

It will spark hope in the County Galway town of a revival of the €850 million project that was dogged for years by planning delays and court appeals and was subsequently shelved. It may also attract fresh objections.

The world’s largest technology company was granted planning permission to build a €850 million data centre near Athenry in 2015.

An appeal to An Bórd Pleanála by a handful of local residents was not successful, and the planning appeals board confirmed the local authority’s decision in 2016.

But the company ultimately aborted its plans for County Galway in 2018 after three objectors sought a review of the decision through the courts.

Read the full story in this week’s Connacht Tribune, on sale in shops now. Or you can download the digital edition from www.connachttribune.ie

Continue Reading

Connacht Tribune

Mum’s dream holiday turns to nightmare after cancer diagnosis

Published

on

Julia McAndrew, in hospital in Mexico.

A mother who went to Mexico on a dream holiday to spend Christmas with family is too weak to return home after being diagnosed with advanced cancer.

From the minute Julia McAndrew landed in the South American country, her health took a major downward spiral.

Her son and daughter were shocked when she asked for a wheelchair to make it through the airport.

She and daughter Eliska had flown out to see her son Patrick, who had relocated to Mexico to run an online learning business.

They initially thought she had fallen ill due to the rigours of a 22-hour, multi-stop flight.

But when her stomach problems did not improve and she began to lose a lot of weight and suffered from very low energy, they sought medical help.

This had to be done privately and without the financial help of an insurance company, Patrick reveals.

She was initially diagnosed with anaemia and kidney failure and underwent various treatments, including blood transfusions that appeared to be working.

But three weeks ago, medics discovered that what she had was Stage 4 breast cancer. Julia had cancer a decade ago but was given the all-clear after receiving treatment and a major change in lifestyle.

“It’s returned with a vengeance this time around. It’s spread to her pelvis, ribs and lungs,” reflects Patrick.

The cost of the treatment is $40,000 (€33,000) a month. Her family are hoping to build up her strength enough to endure the long flight home to Oranmore.

They have launched a GoFundMe campaign to raise €280,000 to pay for her treatment and in less than a week a phenomenal €36,000 has been donated.

Read the full story in this week’s Connacht Tribune, on sale in shops now. Or you can download the digital edition from www.connachttribune.ie

Continue Reading

Local Ads

Local Ads

Advertisement
Advertisement

Facebook

Advertisement

Trending