City Hall break agreement with residents (Weds 11th Jan, 2006)
Sinn Fein Cllr. Annette Spillane has accused the City Hall of breaking an agreement made with residents of Courtlands in Mayfield over road works in the area. Last year the City Council agreed a number of measures with residents in relation to proposed work they were due to carry out. The agreement included providing a footpath at the back of the houses, strengtening the rear walls of the homes and provision of a noise abatement wall. Cllr Spillane said
" The agreement reached with the residents last year has been broken by the City Council. The Council acknoledge that they have broken the agreement made but state that they had no choice in the matter as to keep the agreement will mean an extra 1million euro being spent. While i understand where the Council is coming from, the fact remains that the Council knew the additional costs that would be involved before making the agreement and to now try and go back on it is deplorable"
Sinn Fein to hold protests on Park & Ride (Tues 10th Jan, 2006)
Sinn Fein will hold two protests over the coming weeks as we step up our campaign against the proposed location of a Park & Ride at Tinkers Cross. The first will be held on Friday, 13th Jan at 6pm with the other being held on Friday, 20th of Jan at 6pm
Sinn Fein support for Cork Crawford College of Art & Design (Tues 3rd Jan, 2006)
Sinn Fein, today for the retention of the Crawford College of Art & Design to be retained at its current location in Cork City Centre. Speaking at the launch of Sinn Fein's campaign to retain the college at its location, Sinn Fein general election candidate for Cork South Central said,
"The Crawford Art College has been at its present location for since the mid 1800's and is a landmark in the City's Culture. Located in the center of the City, the College is surrounded by many of the Countries leaders in Art & Culture. The College played a significant role in Cork's application to secure the Capital of Culture last year and was a central point of activity all year.
The College must be retained at its present location and if the City is serious about building on the success of the Capital of Culture then any moves to relocate the college must be resisted. We in Sinn Fein stand with the students and the teachers on this issue
Budget passed by City Council (Thurs 22nd Dec, 2005)
The Budget for 2006 was passed last Monday, the budget will see an increase in Refuse Charges of 35Euro and an increase in budgets for lane closures and traffic calming. Commenting, Sinn Fein Cllr. Annette Spillane stated
"The Budget this year was one of the more progressive which has come before the City Council in recent years. We saw no increases in Housing rents, parking charges and the lowest increase in Commercial rates for over 40 years.
However, we have seen an another increase in refuse charges which is unacceptable to Sinn Fein.The sad fact of life is people are paying for waste disposal and have no alternatives in place such as recycling. The City Council and Central Government must ensure that the choice is given to consumers on how to best ddispose of their waste. Until such time as these alternatives are in place then Sinn Fein will continue to vote against any budget which includes refuse charges
Delay in Gurranabraher Community Centre Un-acceptable (Fri 16th Dec, 2005)
The ongoing delay in the construction of a new community centre in Gurranabraher has today been criticised by local Sinn Fein Cllr. Jonathan O Brien and by the Chairperson of the Gurranabraher Residents Association, Jackie Connolly.
Local Sinn Finn Cllr, Jonathan O Brien stated
"The local community centre which is known as the 'Hut' locally was due to be demolished in early October to make way for a state of the art facility which is badly needed in the locality. The contracts have been signed, the funding has been released so there is no excuse why work has not begun. I spoke with the City Council in early September and was assured that the builders would be on site in October. This has not been the case.
Work will not start now until the New Year, at the earliest. Questions will be asked about the delay and answers need to be forthcoming from the City Council on the situtaion."
Local Sinn Fein Rep and Chairperson of the Residents Association, Jackie Connolly stated
" The area has been without a community centre since the start of year. The hut was a vital part of our community, a place where the elderly and young alike gathered to take part in community activity. We all welcomed the proposal to rebuild the centre and looked forward to the day the new facility would open but the constant delays by the City Council to ensure work begins has frustrating for locals. The work must begin as soon as possible and we hope that the City Council will make it a priority in the New Year"
Proposed Development at Chapel Field gets Go-Ahead (Tues 13th Dec, 2005)
The proposed development of 46 private houses at Chapel Field came before City Council on Monday, 12th Dec. On the night there was a proposal to reduce the development from 46 houses to 36 houses, just as the residents wanted.
The following local Councillors voted in favour of the reduction,
- Cllr. Jonathan O Brien (Sinn Fein)
- Cllr. Mick Barry (Socialist Party)
- Cllr. Catherine Clancy (Labour)
- Cllr. Colm Burke (Fine Gael)
The following local Councillors voted against the reduction
- Cllr. Dave McCarthy (Fianna Fail)
- Cllr. Michael O Connell (Labour)
- Cllr. Gary O Flynn (Fianna Fail)
Cllr. Tony Fitzgerald (Fianna Fail) abstained from the vote.
Cllr. Damian Wallace (Fianna Fail) did not vote as he had stated that had a personal interest in the development
Cllr. Patricia Gosch (Fine Gael) was absent from the meeting
During the debate on the proposal Cllr. Dave McCarthy stated that the residents were happy with the proposed development and that no one had complained to him about the number of houses being proposed (maybe if he had turned up to the public meetings he would have known what the residents wanted)
Cllr. Tony Fitzgerald accused Sinn Fein of organising political meetings and not public meetings and that was the reason he did not attend. (He was aware that residents were not happy with the number of houses being proposed but chose to ignore their wishes and abstain from the vote)
Maybe if the local Councillors who voted against reducing the number of the houses had listened to the residents, the people they are suppose to be representing, then the wishes of the residents would have been passed. However, they choose to side with the City Manager and not with the local people who put them in City Hall.
Managers Budget Statement confirms problems at Leisure Complex (Tues 13th Dec, 2005)
The budget report by the City Manager has confirmed the problems which are being experienced at Churchfield Leisure Complex. The complex opened last July to a fanfare of celebration by the City Council but soon ran into difficulties with local residents.
The crux of the problem lay in the new pricing regime implemented by the private company charged with the operation of the complex. Sinn Fein Cllr. Jonathan O Brien stated at the time of the opening that the complex was being priced out of range for the locality. However the City Manager and others claimed that Jonathan was being negative about the complex.
The recent report by the manager which states that 'running costs are higher than income at the moment and the pool is not opearting as well as we would have envisaged with the numbers needed to make the pool viable just not being there. Cllr. O Brien stated
"The only solution to the problem is to lower the prices, unless this is done the complex will continue to run at a loss. I foresaw this happening but my concerns were dismissed by other ward councilors who said i was being negative. It now seems that i have been proved right and the pool is over priced for the market."
Sinn Fein propose devlopment plan for Mayfield (Mon 12th Dec, 2005)
Sinn Fein Cllr. Annette Spillane will propose a SF motion at tonights City Council meeting to draw up a development plan for the Greater Mayfield area. Speakin ahead of the Council meeting, Cllr. Spillane said
" The past few weeks have seen a media onslaught of the Mayfield region. We have been described twice in National reports as being the most littered area in the country, this was followed by a Prime Time special on ASB in which Mayfield was again targetted.
There is no doubt that Mayfield has its fair share of problems but they are not as wide spread as the media would have people believe. The issue at hand is the future development of the area. For too long, Mayfield has been developed in a piece meal fashion to date and this has led to a lot of the problems we are now facing. Tonight i will be proposing that a development plan is drawn up so Mayfield can be developed in a co-ordinated way.
I look forward to this being agreed as it will give the area a sense of purpose and give residents an oppurtunity to have an input into how they want their community to evolve overthe coming decade
Sinn Fein support National day of protest in support of Irish Ferry workers (Fri 10th Dec, 2005)
Over 100 Sinn Fein members and supporters marched in support of Irish Ferry workers today through the streets of Cork. Over 15,000 people took part in the biggest such demonstration since the Tax Marches in the 70's.
The protection of workers, regardless of creed, nationality or colour is paramount. We cannot allow a situation to develop where companies and multi-nationals trample the rights of workers in their greedy pursuit of profits. The rights and conditions of workers must be protected at all costs.
Irish Ferry's is a very profitable company and the introduction of the new regime, which displaces Irish workers, is about greed and nothing more. If the trade unions and the workers do not stand up to this now then the future of all workers within the Irish economy is vunerable.
Commenting on todays march, Sinn Fein Cllr. Jonathan O Brien stated
" The people of Cork and of the Nation, today, have drawn the line in the sand and have said loud and clear that enough is enough. We will no longer let a situation develop where greed comes before profit. While the march was a very succesful one I was dissapointed that the Banking sectot did not come out in support of its fellow workers.
My message to them is that we marched today to protect their interests as well as our own and that no jobs will be safe unless we stand up to the greed which has crept into coporate Ireland"
Sinn Fein picket the visit of Mary Harney (Mon 28th Nov, 2005)
Sinn Fein members in Cork today picketed the visit of Mary Harney to Cork today. The Minister was opening the new health centre at Brookfield, College Rd. Henry Cremin, Sinn Fein candidate in South Central, explains
"Today Mary Harney will be opening the new health centre at Brookfield and while she is getting her picture in the local paper, 5mins down the road people will be lying on trolleys awaiting a hospital bed. Just across the river on the Northside people are not even misfortunate enough to be lying on trolleys because there is no hospital sited there. The 21st century and this is the face of our two tier health service which many of us have to endure. Its a disgrace and needs redical reform. However, Minister Harney has not shown any capability to address the substantive issues facing our health service and we will continue to highlight it and remind her of her duties every time she visits our city."
EPA License for Incinerator slammed (Fri 25th Nov, 2005)
Sinn Fein in Cork have critised the decision today by the EPA which will see the states first commercial incinerator in Ringaskiddy. Cllr. Jonathan O Brien said,
" The decision by the EPA is wrong, simple as that. They did not take on board any of the concerns expressed by the community in regard to health and safety. The EPA and Invader have no medical experts which can give assurances peoples lives will not be put at risk.
The fight is not over yet though as the residents have the judicial review of An Bord Pleanna's decision to grant planning permission still to come. The campaignm group, CHASE, now have 28 days to appeal todays granting of a license
Primetime special on ASB must be balanced (Thurs 24th Nov, 2005)
Speaking about next Monday nights primetime show on Anti Social Behaviour, which will focus on Mayfield, Sinn Fein Cllr. Annette Spillane has said that there needs to be a balanced view given, commenting today Cllr. Spillane stated
" Mayfield has been the subject of some unfair press recently, First we had the publication of the Litter Leagues which identified the area as a litter blackspot, now we have the Primetime program next Monday which will highlight ASB in Mayfield. Like all areas of the City, Mayfield does have a problem with ASB but we also have a lot of community groups who work hard to try and keep it to minimum.
I hope that the program will reflect this as well. People must remenber that this area has seen very little investment by central government, despite been one of the states 13 worst unemployment blackspots.
Sinn Fein calls for reduction in swimming pool charges (Fri 11th Nov, 2005)
Sinn Fein Cllr. Jonathan O Brien has today called the board of Leisureworld to review the charges for Churchfiled swimming pool. Cllr. O Brien said
"The new complex at Churchfield is a state of the art facility and is a very welcome amenity for the Northside. However, the fact that the prices are out of the reach of many locals in area is an issue which needs to be addressed as soon as possible.
The crux of the problem lies in the fact that the City Council has employed the services of a Private Company which now sets the prices in relation to swimming. The charge to use the slides in the complex is the most absurd thing i have ever heard of. Charging 70cent to use a slide on top of the cost of using the pool is wrong and should be abloshised now. I have wrote to Leisureworld and will be raising the issue with the City Manager again
Sinn Fein oppose Park & Ride at Tinkers Cross (Fri 4th Nov, 2005)
Sinn Fein Cllr. Annette Spillane has critised the City Council's proposals for a Park & Ride at Tinkers Cross. Cllr Annette Spillane has said
"The site at Tinkers Cross is the last remaining green space in Mayfield. Not only are they proposing to take away the last amenity space in teh locality but they are proposing to put a park & ride there. Its Crazy, the area is already a notorious blackspot for traffic jams. The addition of a park & ride will see another 1000 cars trying to access the area.
I can assure the Council that any attempts to go ahead with this proposal will be met with fierce reisitance by the local community. I am calling for common sense to prevail here but knowing how the City Council works I am not too optimistic this will happen