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Tensions rise as Connemara councillors debate proposed merits of city and county councils

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Galway Bay fm newsroom – The proposed amalgamation of Galway Co Council and Galway City Council sparked off strong reactions at today’s meeting of the Connemara Municipal Authority.
Councillors from west of the Corrib clashed about the merits of the proposed merger from the Dept of the Environment.
It was a spirited debate with a few expletives thrown in.
The clamour suggested amalgamation of Galway City Council and Galway County Council was lead by Oughterard councillor Séamus Walsh, who said it was now ironic to think that there were demands for a separate local authority for Connemara at the time of the last local election.
This larger body of city and county would leave the peripheral areas out in the cold, Councillor Walsh stated.
And he went on to say Fianna Fáil would not stand for it at national level.
Another Oughterard councillor, Thomas Welby, saw the situation differently.
Councillor Welby said he would not bank on Fianna Fáil standing their ground if the crunch came in Dublin.
Furthermore, he believed that the amalgamation would strengthen the status of Galway in general and give the local authority a critical mass of population and greater funding.
As it is, Galway county council is not doing much for peripheral areas, Thomas Welby said, and it does not have the resources to do so.
Councillor Niamh Byrne said she also saw merit in the link up of the city and county.
But councillors Tom Curran, Seán Ó Tuairisg and Thomas Healy all opposed the idea.
Councillor Ó Tuairisg said the issues of geography and the Irish langauge were critical factors.
And Councillor Healy was fearful of its effect on the status of Connemara saying “God help Connemara if this happens”.

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City to host public consultation on new hydrogen hub at Galway Harbour

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Galway Bay fm newsroom – A public consultation meeting will take place in the city next week on a planned major hydrogen hub at Galway Harbour. (14/12)

The major zero-emissions transport facility will research, produce and use renewable hydrogen gas.

The fuel will initially be distributed for use by buses and trucks, and then extended to maritme and aviation.

The public consultation will provide an overview of the project and the proposed route options for electric cables.

It takes place the Harbour Hotel on Wednesday December 14th, from 3 to 8pm.

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Obsolete public phone boxes removed across city

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https://mcdn.podbean.com/mf/web/dwjnwq/niallphone.mp3

Galway Bay fm newsroom – It’s the end of an era – as the last of the obsolete public phone boxes across the city are being removed.

Crews have been removing boxes at Eyre Square, Bridge Street and in Galway’s West End in recent days.

They’ve been described as eye-sores – while Councillor Niall McNelis says they were effectively being used as public toilets.

In recent years, some of the boxes have been replaced with modern open-air kiosks, which combine a pay-phone with a digital screen offering public information.

Councillor McNelis has been speaking to David Nevin.

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Tanaiste Leo Varadkar to visit Galway tomorrow

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Galway Bay fm newsroom – Leo Varadkar is to visit Galway tomorrow for a series of engagements across the county.

The Tanaiste will be visiting Connemara, Galway City, and Athenry.

Leo Varadkar will be hitting the road early, with his first stop at Kylemore Abbey in Connemara shortly after 9am.

He’ll then travel to University of Galway, where he’ll be attending the launch of Construct Innovate at mid-day.

Construct Innovate is Ireland’s National Construction Technology Centre – and aims to make Ireland a global leader in research and innovation in the sector.

To round off his trip to Galway, The Tanaiste will pay a late afternoon visit to the Bia Innovator Campus in Athenry at 4.45pm.

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