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Presidential hopefuls make pitches to Galway city councillors

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Galway Bay fm newsroom – Five presidential hopefuls have made their presentation to Galway city councillors this afternoon in their bid for the Aras.
Marie Goretti Moylan kicked off proceedings with a brief presentation at City Hall.
The Athlone native was first to address councillors after some of the candidates swapped places on the official speaking order schedule.
Ms Goretti Moylan delivered a four minute presentation and advised members she hopes to go to Trinity College in Dublin to study law,with a view to studying human rights at a later stage.
She said she has a particular interest in domestic violence issues and intends to conduct research in the Magdalene Laundries and other such institutions and eventually write a book.
Ms Goretti Moylan told the meeting she is representing herself and funding her own campaign for the Aras.
She declined to speak to Galway Bay fm News
A special campaign focusing on ability as opposed to ‘disability’ is among the action items which Sean Gallagher has vowed to highlight in the office of President.
The Dragon’s Den star spoke of his visual disability adding he has never been limited by disability, as he made his bid for the Aras in a presentation before city councillors.
The Cavan father of two told the chamber he has massive respect for President Michael D Higgins and is not seeking to be his replacement,but his successor, carrying on the important work he has been doing.
Mr. Gallagher referred to his previous campaign for the Aras in 2011 where he won a nomination from four local authorities to allow him enter the race.
He referred to the controversial tweet which brought his campaign into the spotlight stating it changed the outcome of the election.
The Dragon said he now has the courage to get back up thanked the half a million people who gave him their number one.
Galway native Patrick Feeney was third to make his bid for the presidency before Galway City Councillors advising he will fight for rural Ireland.
The Claddagh man and former Aer Lingus worker ran in the 2016 election as an Independent but was knocked out in the early counts.
He told the chamber he’d like to see an end to the ‘killing of rural Ireland’ and stressed he didn’t want to see any more post office closures.
He suggested building a LUAS from Galway to Clifden and from Galway to Oranmore.
He also spoke of the Tuam mother and baby home and joined calls for an inquest at the burial site.
Peter Casey was next to take to the podium.
The Dragon’s Den star told councillors he has lived one third of his life in Australia, one third in Ireland and the balance in America.
He also advised he began his business in Buncrana 23 years ago and has conducted business in many continents.
Mr. Casey said Ireland can create and engage an active diaspora, galvanising a love for Ireland which could lead to the development of a potent movement.
The Dragon said he believes the presidency shouldn’t be a burden on the Irish taxpayer and that there are ways to monetise it and allow it to pay for itself.
He said he would take the president’s salary but would give it away to charitable causes.
Peter Casey said he is committed to his bid for the Aras and has sold his home in Atlanta and bought a house in Donegal.
James Smyth was fifth to make his case for the presidency.
He said he’s running for the office of president based on three main platforms – the Arts, homelessness and the possible introduction of Article 47 and 48 into the Constitution.
The Navan native informed the chamber he’s an educator, musician and unpaid ambassador.
The lecturer said he is a big fan of Michael D Higgins and thinks he has done a fantastic job but that maybe it’s time for change.
Five more candidates have yet to make a pitch.
The meeting continues at City Hall.
Our reporting team in City Hall is Antoinette Giblin and Niamh Delmer.

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Works on Kirwan roundabout set to reach completion in third quarter

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Galway Bay fm newsroom – Works to turn Kirwan roundabout into a signalised junction are scheduled to reach completion in the third quarter of this year.

Galway City Council has awarded the main works contract to John Madden & Sons Ltd.

The multi-million euro project will see the current 5-arm roundabout transformed into a 4-arm traffic light junction.

Prior to the pandemic, it was estimated that around 40 thousand vehicles pass through the Kirwan Roundabout every day between the hours of 7am and 7pm.

The plan aims is to improve traffic flow, reduce congestion at peak times and offer increased safety to pedestrians and cyclists.

It also hopes to discourage the ongoing issue of ‘rat runs’ through local residential areas.

Sections of four private properties will be impacted by the change – the Menlo Park Hotel, a B&B, a home, and a residential site.

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Galway has third highest number of PUP claimants this week

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Galway Bay fm newsroom – Galway has the third highest number of claimants for the pandemic unemployment payment this week.

Over 24,900 people in the city and county are to receive the State support this week.

Dublin is the county with the highest number receiving PUP this week with over 146,500 claimants, followed by Cork with over 47 thousand.

Meanwhile, over 8,200 people in Galway have been medically certified for the COVID-19 related enhanced illness benefit.

This week, the Department of Social Protection has issued weekly payments valued at over €139 million to those in receipt of the pandemic unemployment payment.

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City Council to proceed with €3.5 million loan for first time buyers scheme

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Galway Bay fm newsroom – Galway City Council has agreed to borrow €3.5 million for a loan scheme for first time buyers.

The total allocation will go towards the provision of the 2021 Rebuilding Ireland Home Loan scheme for city residents.

At this week’s Local Authority meeting, councillors agreed unanimously to borrow €3.5 million from Government for the 2021 Rebuilding Ireland Home Loan scheme.

The scheme is only available to first time buyers who have already had two loan applications rejected by commercial lending institutes.

The income of a single applicant must not exceed €50,000 while the combined income of joint applicants must not be over €75,000.

Loans of up to 90% are available on properties up to €320,000 – with the maximum interest rate is set at just under 3%.

Director of Services for Housing Dermot Mahon told the meeting that since the scheme started in 2018, the City Council has financed 35 loan approvals at a total cost of just under €5.2 million.

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