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SF accused of ‘populist politics’ on LPT proposal

Enda Cunningham

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Derek Nolan TD

Labour TD Derek Nolan has said that housing must be seen as a basic right and should not return to a situation where it is controlled by market forces. He accused Sinn Féin of ‘populist politics’ after their proposal to cut the Local Property Tax LPT by 15% in County Galway – which would have hit local authority coffers by €2.25 million.

“There is no question that we are in the middle of a housing crisis – a private housing crisis, a rental crisis and a social housing crisis.

“We are still picking up the pieces of a housing crash and a weak policy that existed under the previous Government. It did not build any social housing and simply handed it over to the rental market. Unwinding that is proving very difficult.

“Social housing is interlinked with the private market. If people cannot buy a home, they have to rent, which increases rental rates. If people cannot afford rent, they need social housing, putting pressure on the social housing market.

“This all feeds into the lack of supply and causes a problem. A much more holistic and comprehensive approach is needed.

“Treating the housing market as a flexible market, where supply and demand is paramount, will always leave us with problems. If we hand over responsibility and say that housing is not a right but is something that we allow market forces dictate, we will repeat the problems we had in the boom. Developers and people with connections will control the housing market once again.

“Housing is something that everybody requires. There is not a citizen in this State who does not need a roof over their head, irrespective of whether that is provided by themselves from their own income, or through a helping hand from the State.

“We need to stop speculators controlling the price of land and ensure that everybody in this country will be able to afford a home. Until we make that decision as a society we will be chasing rather than leading a proper housing system.

For more, read this week’s Galway City Tribune.

Connacht Tribune

Over half of west’s adults have no will

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Almost six out of every ten people in the west do not have a will – and that’s in line with the national average of 59%.

And according to the Royal London’s “Let’s Talk About Death” survey, one-third of the population say they’ve been meaning to, but just haven’t gotten around to it.

The survey was undertaken as part of a campaign launched by Royal London, which aims to tackle the taboo surrounding death to encourage a vital dialogue on bereavement, to help people enjoy the time they have with those they love and to honour those lost.

Padraic Benson, Royal London’s Broker Consultant for Galway, acknowledged that it was understandable why many people are reluctant to discuss the topic of death and dying.

But he added: “this survey indicates that it’s hampering the necessary provisions to be made. While men appear to be slightly more prepared than their female counterparts, with 48% saying they have a will compared with just 34% of women, it still leaves over half the population unprepared.”

But the pandemic has helped to focus the minds of many, he said.

“Since the start of the pandemic, there have been 254,870 recorded cases of Covid-19 in Ireland, with 10,511 confirmed cases in Galway alone.  And when asked, 55% of people surveyed said Covid-19 had made them realise how important it is to have a will in place,” he revealed.

“While the survey results do show that most people have a sense of when they should make a will, it seems the majority aren’t following through with the necessary actions. Many people have the best of intentions, with 34% saying they’ve been meaning to get around to it. Others believe they are too young (25%) and many more, 23%, have just never thought about it.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.

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Connacht Tribune

Council has no cash for tourism sector dig-out

Declan Tierney

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Cllr Evelyn Parsons

Hopes of a post-Covid helping hand for tourism interests in East Galway has been dashed by the local authority which said that any such leg-up could only be part of the budgetary process for later in the year.

The matter was raised by Cllr Evelyn Parsons at a recent meeting of Ballinasloe Municipal Council when she said that the east of the county needed to reap the economic benefits from the lifting of restrictions.

Cllr Parsons asked that a presentation be made to area Council members with a specific focus on works to develop, enhance and stimulate tourism growth for the area.

The independent councillor proposed that Director of Services Alan Farrell outline details of the various outdoor spaces and potential business opportunities to allow for the successful reopening of businesses, outdoor dining, drinking, retail, hospitality and outdoor entertainment as soon as possible.

Cllr Parsons also wants Director of Services Liam Hanrahan to consider short term and immediate measures with regards to sanitary and public needs should as portaloos, bins, benches, Covid-19 signage as well as outdoor power points.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.

Connacht Tribune Digital Edition App

Download the Connacht Tribune Digital Edition App to access to Galway’s best-selling newspaper.

Click HERE to download it for iPhone and iPad from Apple’s App Store, or HERE to get the Android Version from Google Play.

Or purchase the Digital Edition for PC, Mac or Laptop from Pagesuite  HERE.

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The Connacht Tribune Live app is the home of everything that is happening in Galway City and county. It’s completely FREE and features all the latest news, sport and information on what’s on in your area. Click HERE to download it for iPhone and iPad from Apple’s App Store, or HERE to get the Android Version from Google Play.

 

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Connacht Tribune

Transport key to success for west

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Ibec’s Helen Leahy....recommendations.

A world-class transport infrastructure is critical to the west achieving its economic potential, according to the umbrella group for the Irish business sector.

Ibec has again reiterated its shopping list for the West region, which it outlined in its recent NDP submission.

It wants to see the state step up to progress a host of key road projects – including the N6 Galway City Ring Road, and the Atlantic Economic Corridor from Galway northwards by completing the M17 Tuam to Sligo and N15 Sligo to Letterkenny.

It has also called for the implementation of the Galway Transport Strategy to deliver vital public transport across metropolitan Galway – and investment in future Port of Galway developments and expansion, including the facilitation of offshore renewable energy projects.

And in more general terms, across the region, Ibec has called for an increase capital investment in the further and higher education sector and establish a Technological University in the region, and the acceleration of the roll-out of the National Broadband Plan and ensure a supportive regulatory environment for the successful roll-out of 5G.

The body also wants to see town centres revitalized, to ensure their future viability and underpin recovery across the region.

For more, read this week’s Connacht Tribune.

Connacht Tribune Digital Edition App

Download the Connacht Tribune Digital Edition App to access to Galway’s best-selling newspaper.

Click HERE to download it for iPhone and iPad from Apple’s App Store, or HERE to get the Android Version from Google Play.

Or purchase the Digital Edition for PC, Mac or Laptop from Pagesuite  HERE.

Get the Connacht Tribune Live app
The Connacht Tribune Live app is the home of everything that is happening in Galway City and county. It’s completely FREE and features all the latest news, sport and information on what’s on in your area. Click HERE to download it for iPhone and iPad from Apple’s App Store, or HERE to get the Android Version from Google Play.

 

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