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County Councillors to call for private hospitals to be used to address breast screening backlogs

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Galway Bay FM Newsroom – Two County Councillors are calling for breast screening to be made available at private hospitals in Galway in a bid to deal with the backlog due to the ongoing pandemic.

Councillors Martina Kinane and Shelly Herterich Quinn plan to raise the motion at this Monday’s meeting of the local authority where they will urge Health Minister Stephen Donnelly to consider the use of private hospitals for women awaiting mammogram appointments.

The meeting of 39 councillors and officials will take place at Corrandulla Hall on Monday morning.

Councillor Kinane says Breast Check estimates it may take 36 months to complete the current round of checks instead of the 24 to 26 month standard formerly in place.

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City Councillor calls for Post Office network to be given PSO contract

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Galway Bay fm newsroom – A City Councillor is calling for the Post Office network to be given a Public Service Obligation contract to ensure the entire network can remain viable.

PSO’s provide subsidies to ensure services that are in the interest of the public can remain in operation, even if they are not profitable.

Councillor Niall McNeilis says many industries in Ireland already receive PSO contracts – such as agriculture, aviation, rail, bus, housing and energy.

He argues the Post Office network provides essential services in communities across the country and helped support local economies during the Covid-19 pandemic.

Councillor McNeilis is seeking the support of his colleagues to send a motion to Minister Eamon Ryan to operate the network with a PSO.

Labour Councillor McNeilis says the Post Office network could play a vital role in communities post Covid-19.

To hear more, tune into Galway Bay fm news…

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Galway Simon secures approval for independent living units in Newcastle

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Galway Bay fm newsroom – Galway Simon Community has secured approval for its plans to develop independent living units for older people in the west of the city.

The proposal sets out to demolish an existing fire damaged two storey dwelling and build 10 one-bedroom apartments in a three-storey building, with associated on site car parking.

The development is set to be located in the Upper Newcastle area.

City planners have given their backing to the plan subject to 24 conditions.

One states the apartments are only to be used by clients of Galway Simon Community and are not to be sold independently of one another, or as a block, to any third party.

It’s also stated that communal open spaces and access ways are to be maintained by a management company.

This company is also required to repaint the proposed block every four years.

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County’s 2021 draft budget of €136m to be debated by councillors today

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Galway Bay fm newsroom – The county’s draft budget for 2021 is set to be debated by councillors later today when they meet in Corrandulla Hall.

The budget of over €136 million represents an increase of €8 million on the figure for 2020.

The draft has been prepared with no rates increase due to members’ views not to increase the charge and also given the impact of the pandemic on business.

The roads grant funding in 2021 is expected to be over €4 million greater than that budgeted for in 2020.

Over 40 percent of revenue Income will come from State grants at over €55 million, while Local Property Tax and Pension Related Deduction is estimated to bring in over €14 million.

With reference to the recent allocation of €1 million funding for municipal districts, the report states the distribution of the funding will be considered in the first instance by the corporate policy group before being considered by MDs.

Interim Chief Executive Kevin Kelly concludes by stating that 2021 will undoubtedly bring challenges and change for Galway county council but he is confident key services can be provided to meet the critical needs of the people of Galway.

The budget draft will be debated in full at the statutory meeting in Corrandulla Hall at 11am.

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