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Ombudsman received 45 complaints about Galway City Council last year


From this week's Galway City Tribune

From this week's Galway City Tribune

Ombudsman received 45 complaints about Galway City Council last year

From the Galway City Tribune – Sixty percent of complaints to the Ombudsman about Galway City Council in 2022 related to housing.

Ombudsman Ger Deering (pictured) confirmed his office received 45 complaints about the City Council last year.

A total of 27 of these related to housing, with three more about Traveller Accommodation, and five related to homeless services.

A breakdown of the complaints supplied to the Galway City Tribune show fines (four), planning (two), roads/traffic (two), motor tax (one) and pollution (one) were among the other issues brought to his attention.

Housing was also the subject of most complaints to the Ombudsman about County Hall.

Galway County Council had 56 complaints investigated by the Ombudsman last year, with 33 of these (58%) related to housing.

Planning (11), roads/traffic (three), motor tax (two), pollution (two) and other (five) made up the remaining complaints to the County Council.

The Ombudsman, in its annual report for 2022, confirmed that there were eight complaints lodged last year relating to University of Galway.

Two of them were for bias or harassment, but the Ombudsman clarified to this newspaper that “neither of these complaints were upheld”.

It had two complaints about course fees, two about progress in education and two more about the university.

This article first appeared in the print edition of the Galway City Tribune. You can support our journalism by subscribing to the Galway City Tribune HERE. A one-year digital subscription costs just €89.00. The print edition is in shops every Friday.

Mr Deering said his office received the highest number of complaints ever last year. There were 4,791 complaints about public service bodies, an increase of over 19% on the 2021 figure. Of these, some 221 complaints were made from people living in Galway, he said.

In a separate report published last week, Mr Deering, who is also the Information Commissioner, said 35,465 requests were made to public bodies under the Freedom of Information (FOI) Act in 2022.

This was up 26% compared with 2015.

It included 153, 125 and 104 FOI requests to Galway City Council, Galway County Council, and University of Galway, respectively.

The Information Commissioner dealt with 657 applications to review FOI decisions made by public bodies.

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