Sinn Féin Councillor Antóin Watters has welcomed the response from Louth County Council to his recent motion on the issue at the September meeting.
Cllr Watters said “following the increase in illegal dumping in the north of the County, I put forward a motion asking that Louth Council initiate a county wide awareness campaign to highlight the issue but more importantly to ensure the public are aware of their own responsibilities and the danger to themselves if they use unlicensed waste collectors.”
Cllr Watters explained, “For example, if I pay ‘a man with a van’ to take away a mattress and maybe a settee or some other items and he dumps them at a beauty spot in the Cooley mountains, I am responsible because those items are mine and I did not use someone who holds a waste collection permit. I am responsible and can face fines even though I employed someone in good faith to take away my rubbish.”
“I don’t believe that the public in general are aware this is the law so I have asked for an awareness campaign similar to the one implemented by Meath County Council. I welcome the positive response which stated “The Council’s Environmental Awareness section will liaise with colleagues in Meath County Council to ascertain the effectiveness of their billboard campaign and seek to replicate same if this has proven to have been a successful initiative.”
In the meantime, Cllr Watters asked that citizens “use only those waste collectors that hold the appropriate permits and that way you will know exactly where your rubbish is going to end up. Remember, your rubbish, your responsibility.”
Sinn Féin Councillor Edel Corrigan has raised the issue of the unofficial parking taking place on the N53 Castleblayney Road in Dundalk.
Cllr Corrigan said “I have been contacted by a number of residents on this road directly off the M1 roundabout intersection. Some time ago yellow box and double yellow lines were installed to facilitate local residents having clear visibility on turning to their homes from the main road. However, there is now a significant increase in the volume of persons parking their cars on that road to car pool to Dublin and the no parking in the boxes and double yellow lines are no longer being adhered to.”
A second issue was also raised by Edel Corrigan.
“There is also a significant increase in the amount of waste being discarded in this area, from builder’s waste to food and general waste which residents believe to be coming from those parking in the area. I contacted the Council regarding this and welcome the fact that they have already completed a clean-up of the area.”
Cllr Corrigan is seeking longer term solutions to the unofficial parking but unfortunately because of the remoteness of the area from the town, the use of traffic wardens who are on foot, would be unsuitable.
Cllr Corrigan said “Infrastructure are investigating the establishing of proper park and ride facilities for the longer term so hopefully that will alleviate the issues around this particular area.”
Residents of Greenacres have been plagued with continuous dumping in an alleyway at the back of their houses. Sinn Féin Councillor Jennifer Green was shocked when she saw the volume of rubbish left. “It’s disgusting! The smell is overpowering and as a mum, I fear for the children playing in the area as there is quite a number of broken glass bottles along with dirty nappies, general house waste and used condoms. Not only that, but there is also a couch. It beggars belief. The rubbish is scattered the whole way along the alleyway. This type of rubbish attracts vermin and is a health and safety issue to people in the surrounding area.”
Cllr. Green explained “I got the residents on board to do a clean-up of the area which is really above the call of duty for them as it wasn’t their rubbish in the first place. But talking to the residents it’s very obvious that they have great pride in their community and want to do what they can to address this issue and clean the area up. I duly contacted the council to arrange a clean up with the residents only to be told that the council wouldn’t provide us with any equipment and would not help us to take the rubbish away as it was on private ground.”
“This has infuriated me as the council are constantly promoting Tidy Towns (which I am a member) and cleaning up of the town (both public and private). It strikes me as this rubbish is out of sight it doesn’t matter to the council and the people have to deal with it. This is unacceptable. Are the people in Greenacres not entitled to have a tidy and clean estate just because they are not as visible as the town centre?”
Jennifer Green concluded by saying “Sinn Féin are fighting for better provision of public services and this is yet another example of how the council is letting the tax payer down. This is unacceptable.”