Sinn Feinn Chairman takes seat in Offaly

Sinn Feinn Chairman takes seat in Offaly

Sean Maher, Chairman of Sinn Feinn has taken up council in the vacant Offaly seat left by the election of Carol Nolan.

Mr Maher will formally be co-opted to his seat at the next Ofally County Council meeting, in favour of the other candidate Martin McKeown.

Mr Maher is a local man who has been the Birr Chairman for Sinn Feinn, the local football team’s coach and player, and also an organiser and attender of the anti-water charge protests.

Mr Maher is a husband and father, and is employed by local engineering firm Grant Engineering in Birr.

Mr Maher feels passionately about the local community and joined because of the way the country was going, and that local councilors can make local changes for local people

Tipperary Roads in Dire Need of Repair

Tipperary Roads in Dire Need of Repair

Over the past 7 or so years, funding for roads repairs and maintenance in the Tipperary area have been reduced by over 50% and the roads themselves are now showing major signs of wear and tear.

With just short of 6000km of road in the Tipperary area, the local council have a massive task at hand to try to bring the infrastructure to an acceptable level – no mean feat, and it’s expected to take several years to complete the project, assuming suitable funding can be found.

With roads infrastructure being such a visual part of rural towns and villages, the repairs would not only improve the roads themselves, but also the appearance of the surrounding areas, as well as giving a much needed boost to the local employment market.

A recent council meeting has addressed these issues and councilors will be looking to secure funding as soon as possible – the available funding this year is expected to increase in-line with the upturn in economy of late, but the amount of funding required is not an insignificant amount, and a shortfall is expected.

As part of the road improvements, councilors are said to be campaigning for CCTV to be installed at busy junctions in order to assist Gardai with tracking travelling criminals, in turn tackling the ever increasing issue of rural crime.

Local councilor Doran has said that a possible source of income to help with roads repairs would be the 35% or so of people who are failing to pay their rates, if this figure can be reduced then the income achieved from rateable premises may be able to help cover some of the shortfall for the roads repairs.

Improvement to the roads long term would not only improve appearance of the local area, it would also potentially increase tourism income, allow easier access to local farms and businesses in terms of deliveries and pickups, and also significantly reduce the number of claims being made for damage to vehicles tyres, wheels and suspension components due to the poor state of the roads, many such claims are being supported by dashcam footage which makes it hard for the council to refute the claims.

The longer this remains an issue, the poorer the roads become and in-turn, the repair bill increases, we really are now at crisis point and the sooner work commences, the better for all concerned.