Louth County Councillor Tomás Sharkey has been elected the chairman of Louth & Meath Education and Training Board.
Councillor Tomás Sharkey is exacerbated at the lack of progress in providing a second Primary Care Centre in Dundalk.
Cllr Sharkey said “Primary Care Centres are locations where many health professionals are available in the one location. In Dundalk we have one on the Alphonsus Road but we were promised one by former TD and Minister Dermot Ahern and also by Deputy Peter Fitzpatrick.
“I raised the issue once again with the HSE and the response indicates that we are in the same position as we were under the last Fianna Fáil government years ago.
“The response I received from the HSE indicates that there is no political commitment to the health of Dundalk people and certainly no urgency to provide important services.
“It is time for accountability on this matter. It is time for Deputy Fitzpatrick to deliver or get off the can.
Sinn Féin County Councillor Tomás Sharkey raised the issue of the Ardee Ambulance Station with the HSE.
Louth Sinn Féin held a convention this evening to formally nominate two new councillors to replace current Councillors Kevin Meenan and Jennifer Green who are standing down.
Cllr Kevin Meenan who stood down for health reasons will be replaced by Bay Estate man Ruairí O Murchú. Ruairí attended the Gael Scoil in Muirhevnamor and then St. Joseph’s NS where his father Gerry Murphy was principal.
Ruairí is married to Annemarie and is father to two sons and a stepson. He has worked in several positions for Sinn Féin both locally and regionally and is presently with the party’s Election Department.
Although he labels himself a novice, Ruairí is passionate about sports and enjoys boxing, Brazilian jiu jitsu, kickboxing, running and mountain walking.
He is committed to the core Sinn Féin principles of Irish unity and creating a more just and equal society for all. He is a dedicated political activist who aims to listen to and serve the community and to continue the work on the ground of Cllr Kevin Meenan.
Jennifer Green also stood down from her role as Councillor to focus on her family.
Speaking this evening Jennifer said “since I stood for election in 2014 I have had my third child. I feel I need to focus on and devote more time to my children. I feel I would be doing the people of Dundalk South a disservice if I couldn’t devote my full attention to constituency work. I am delighted to nominate Anne and I know she will be a fantastic asset to the team.”
Jennifer Green will be replaced by Anne Campbell. Anne is originally from Coalisland in Co Tyrone and has been living in Dundalk for over twenty years. She is married to Laurence and they have two sons aged nine and seven. Her parents Mary and Pat Campbell currently reside in Ravensdale.
Anne’s name will be familiar to those in Dundalk as she worked for the Democrat and more recently The Argus.
Through her journalism work Anne has built up a wide range of contacts in many walks of life; business, Gardaí, the public sector, health etc. She has developed an expertise in a number of aspects of the town particularly the criminal justice system in which she has retained a deep interest.
Anne has helped many people over the years sometimes by printing their stories but more often than not, helping them get in touch with those in authority or asking questions on their behalf. It is this aspect of her work that Anne enjoyed and will help her in her constituency work as a councillor.
Anne wants to help build a new Ireland where people without a voice will be heard and it will be an equal society where everyone is included.
Louth Sinn Féin want to thank out-going Cllrs Kevin Meenan and Jennifer Green for all their dedication and hard work over the past number of years and we wish them health and happiness for many years to come.
Speaking after the November meeting of Louth County Council, Cllr Sharkey said “This week Councillor Breathnach made an embarrassing lapse to Bertie mode. Councillor Breathnach let the mask slip on his party’s intentions when he proposed that the taxpayer pay up to 75% of the cost of renovating privately owned buildings to be made suitable for tenants and then have the same taxpayer pay a 20 years lease to the same private owner. I am calling on him to declare what interested group put him up to this harebrained idea”.
In the Council chamber, during discussion of the proposal, Cllr Sharkey “gave the example where €50,000 would easily be required to upgrade an empty home. The Fianna Fáil proposal would make the taxpayer liable for €37,500 of this and then another €180,000 of leasing costs based on €750 per month for 20 years. At the end of this 20 years, and after €217,500 cost to the state, the house would still belong to the landlord.
“Pumping public money into the pockets of investors was Charlie McGreevy and Bertie Ahern’s favourite policy. It destroyed the economy. A generation of elderly, sick, unemployed and emigrated citizens are paying for that policy.
“Councillor Breathnach has a bare faced cheek coming into a Council meeting, where the financial crisis in public services was evident to all, with this proposal. Councils and the state should and could easily build homes on land already owned for a fraction of his costs. Thankfully, his proposal was defeated at council but I am cautioning the public that we had a glimpse of the real Fianna Fáil agenda today and everybody needs to be ultra vigilant of the party that crashed our economy and be aware that their stripes have not changed.”
Below is the text of Cllr Breathnach’s motion.
MEETING OF LOUTH COUNTY COUNCIL Monday, November 16, 2015 MOTION
MOTION: D. Breathnach
That Louth County Council request the Ministers for Environment and Finance introduce a scheme in Louth to allow for the leasing of vacant houses whereby a graduated grant would be made available to the owner/council to bring these properties into use for the purposes of social housing. The grant available to these properties would be calculated on the length of time that these properties would be made available to lease for social housing ,eg.75%grant for 20 year lease,50%for 15 year lease and 25% for minimum 10 year lease.
Reply: This is a matter for the Members