[a] CONFIRMATION OF MINUTES
1. Minutes of Meeting of the Council held on 11th July, 2016.
Proposed and seconded.
Deputy CE (Declan Daly) on Vernon Mount:
Regret there was a fire last night in Vernon Mount. Understand extensive damage was caused. It is clear from the press reports that this was a major fire. Over many years the Council has been involved with the owners and their local agent to ensure the integrity of the house and its structural stability. We spent €112k on the roof in 2012 in order to protect the contents. Part of that amount was recovered from the Department of Arts, Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht at the time. In 2014 further damage was caused as a result of the winter storms. Again, works were carried to to the value of €63k to make the house watertight. We recovered nearly €45k from the Department towards it. It is unusual that the State would be investing in private houses but the importance of this house was recognised. We were told of damage to the access arrangements for the house in July. We contacted the owners’ representative and they advised the Council that repairs would be carried out. We have since further engaged a conservation consultant to see what the house’s current stage in and what might be possible. Looks like our efforts over the years have come to naught.
Cllr Desmond (FF): This is a very sad day for Cork and for all of us. Especially for those who grew up in Douglas and Grange. Great sense of loss. Was there last night. Was actively involved with the Grange Frankfield partnership. An elderly lady said it was like the burning of the old Cork Opera House. Acknowledges what Cork County Council has done over the last few years. Knows the OPW/Department has assisted. The house has been in a perilous state for the last number of years. Knows that we made efforts to protect the interior for the artwork that was there. The current private owner has a lot to answer for. Didn’t engage properly. At a basic level doesn’t think think they took enough measures to ensure the security of the site last night. It is not enough for a private owner to allow such a significant building to go into repair. We’ve lost money on this as a Council but the bigger loss is the building itself. There should be stronger mechanisms there to be able to take charge of buildings like this in a more efficient manner. Grange Frankfield Partnership were exceptionally upset. Everybody will be talking about it this morning but nobody was talking about it last week.
Cllr K Murphy (FG): Former Cllr Peter Kelly went out of his way to ensure there was funding in place to protect this house. Was in very poor shape. Fair play to Cork County Council to try to preserve what it could. We have a derelict site on our hands now. It is Cork’s major loss.
Cllr Jeffers (SF): It was devastating last night when the news broke. I grew up there. The house is a very historic part of the community. It is historic in the world of motor sport. The owner is seriously culpable. Personally would like to commend Cork County Council and the Grange Frankfield Partnership. Would like to commend the fire brigade and the gardai.
Cllr D’Alton (Ind): I too am one of those who grew up looking at Vernon Mount. Devastated at its loss. Echo sentiments already spoken which commend the attempts of the County Council and the incredible work of the community in trying to preserve it. Inclusion of structures like Vernon Mount in the Record of Protected Structures means that their importance is recognised and that they are legally protected from harm. The owners of such buildings are legally required to mind them. To make sure they do not decay. This did not happen in the case of Vernon Mount. Did the County Council attempt to enforce this legislation? If not, would there have been benefit in this case from doing so? Is the legislation not good enough or is it not adequately enforced? Want these questions addressed.
Mayor: This was a great loss. There will be a follow-up to see what can be saved. The overriding feeling is saddness and loss. Commends the Council. It took courage to put money into a privately owned house. The value of what the Council did has now been superseded. A full investigation is going to have to be carried out in relation to the property.
Cllr O’Grady (SF): Is looking for a suspendsion of standing orders to discuss the €1.3m shortfall from the government in relation to valuations.
[b] VOTES OF SYMPATHY
Votes of Sympathy (if any) to the relatives of:
- members or employees of the Council,
- dignitaries of Church or State, or
- members of old I.R.A. and Cumann na mBan.
Votes of sympaty offered.
[c] STATUTORY BUSINESS
Disposal of Property – Section 183 Local Government Act, 2001:
Amendment to Disposal of Property at 23 Owentaraglen, River Valley, Mallow, Co. Cork, by the substitution of “Joanna Kempa and Patryk Zygmunt Bockenek” in lieu of “Joanna Kempa” being the names of the persons to whom the property is to be disposed.
Section 4(2) and Sections 32-35 of the Local Community Development Committee (Section 128E) Regulations 2014 (SI No. 234 of 2014): Filling of two casual vacancies on the South Cork Local Community Development Committee
Two casual vacancies have arisen on the South Cork LCDC. In accordance with the provisions of Section 4(2) and Sections 32-35 of the Local Community Development Committee (Section 128E) Regulations 2014 (SI No. 234 of 2014), the approval of the members is sought for the appointment of Mr. Martin O’Brien and Mr. Peter Dineen as representatives for Cork County Public Participation Network (PPN) to replace representatives for the Community & Voluntary (C&V) Forum. The previous nominees Ms. Therese Barrett Bourke and Mr. Seán O’Riordan are hereby deselected.
Cllr D’Alton (Ind): Have no issue with the election of the proposed candidates but wonders why if their appointment is to be approved by full Council, the proposed candidates attended last week’s meeting of the South Cork LCDC?
Deputy CE: It was pointed out at the meeting that they were there in advance of their formal appointment. It gave them a chance to get familiar with their role!
Filling of casual vacancy on the West Cork Local Community Development Committee
A casual vacancy has arisen on the West Cork LCDC. In accordance with the provisions of Section 4(2) and Sections 32-35 of the Local Community Development Committee (Section 128E) Regulations 2014 (SI No. 234 of 2014), the approval of the members is sought for the appointment of Mr. Cathal Wilson, as a representative for Cork County Public Participation Network (PPN) to replace a representative for the Community & Voluntary (C&V) Forum. The previous nominee Mr. Gavin Falk is hereby de-selected.
Section 66C (4)(a) of the Local Government Reform Act 2014:
Consideration and adoption of Draft Local Economic & Community Plan (LECP).
Proposed and seconded.
Chapter 2 Section 128 B (1) (i) of the Local Government Reform Act 2014:
The 3 no. Cork County LCDCs submit their Annual Reports for 2015 to be noted.
Proposed and seconded.
Section 36(5) of the Garda Siochana Act 2005:
Annual Report on the operation of the Cork County Joint Policing Committee (JPC).
Appointment of a Council member as a Director of Promoting Cork Ltd T/A Visit Cork:
Nominations were made. A vote was taken.
Cllr Colman – 30, Cllr Michael Hegarty – 12
Cllr Colman (Ind) is therefore appointed.
Appointment of a Council Member to the Board of Cork Opera House:
Nominations were made. A vote was taken.
Cllr Desmond – 23, Cllr Mary Hegarty – 13, 6 abstained (SF)
Cllr Desmond (FF) is therefore appointed.
[d] REPORTS & RECOMMENDATIONS OF COMMITTEES
11. Western Committee: REPORT UNDER SECTION 179, PLANNING AND DEVELOPMENT ACT, 2000:
Emergency Repair of Embankment at L47245 Curramore, Borlin, Bantry.
Proposed and seconded.
12. Roads & Transport SPC: Cork Road Safety Plan 2016-2020.
Cllr Hurley (Ind): This was planned to come back to the SPC but time doesn’t allow. The working group was set up in late 2015. It comprises Cork County Council, Cork City Council, TII, Gardai, CUH Emergency Dept (for the HSE) and the RSA. To mirror the national road safety strategy but with specific emphasis on Cork City and County. Draft was presented to both City and County SPC meetings. Views taken on board. Read a report.
Cllr T Collins (Ind) seconds the Road Safety Plan.
Cllr G Moynihan (FF): N22 – lots of accidents and nothing done about it. The road is not safe and the by-pass is badly needed. Wants it to be prioritised. After 2021 is not good enough. Cannot discuss road safety without discussing this.
Cllr Carroll (FF): Hedge cutting doesn’t get adequate attention in this report. Hedge cutting might be the responsibility of the landowner but it is the responsibiltiy of the Council to provide a safe road. Keeps getting reports from cyclists who have to avoid bushes that put them in front of cars or buses. Quite clear now after 2 or 3 years that the landowners are not going to do it. The Council has to provide a safe road for people to travel on. Whether the Council has to be firmer or stronger with the landowner but knows many landowners have no intention of cutting their fences. So thanks for the road safety plan but hedge cutting needs to be addressed. I pay tax on my car. I demand that I get a safe road when I’m driving.
Cllr Couglan (FF): Welcomes cats eyes and lining in the report but road surfaces are the key to road safety. The N71 is the main routeway to West Cork. We will see thousands of cars travelling on that road over the next month or so. The surfaces of these roads are not fit to be called national primary or secondary routes. They are unsafe. At present we need remedial action to allay the incredibly bad state of the N71. Main entrance to Bandon town is dreadfully unsafe. We in Cork County Council are very good at helping local Tidy Towns committees. They are working hard to improve the entrance to the town but meanwhile the road surface is in smithereens.
Cllr O’Flynn (FF): Welcomes the report by Cllr Hurley. Believes a special committee is being set up Kerry in relation to the Macroom by-pass. Is that true? Critical that high-vis vests would be worn by workers on the roads. Ramps in estates. Their own area engineer used to put them in when he was resurfacing an estate. Now it is not possible without a Part 8. This makes ramps much more expensive and far more difficult to get.
Cllr Ryan (FF): Supports Cllr Moynihan in relation to the N22. We have to put pressure on the govenrment in relation to this issue.
Mayor: We did say after our discussion on the TII meeting that we would seek a meeting with the Minister in September on this issue.
Cllr Doyle (FF): Concurs with fellow councillors. Traffic calming is essential. So are hedgerows. The most important thing about the Cork Road Safety Plan is the condition of our roads. The shelving of the M20 is one of the most serious inadequacies in the Cork Road Safety Plan. The disappointment with the TII’s lack of funding to make our roads safer is probably one of the most critical part of the plan.
Cllr Hayes (SF): This is an important but aspirational document. Will count for nothing unless we have input from the TII. Concurs with the importance of the N71.
Cllr Colman (Ind): This report should be used to leverage funding from TII for road safety programmes for small schemes. This is the only way this report can be used. We have other bigger fish to fry with the TII. Welcomes the report and hopes the follow on will be that we get the funding.
Cllr K Murphy (FG): We should be proud that we have a report like this totally in the interest of safety. Some people were prosecuted for not cutting their hedges on the roadside but they weren’t allowed to within the limits of the cutting season. The N71 has to be upgraded to national primary standard. It is only a national secondary route and that’s the way it looks. That’s the only way it will get the funding.
- The Plan is broader than some of the construction and engineering matters that were brought up here today.
- Hedge-cutting – Aidan Weir did make the point that we have engaged in a campaign to advise landowners of their responsibility in relation to hedge cutting in late August. We have taken action where landowners do not cut. If there are areas of particular concern, they should be raised at Municipal District level where action can be taken.
- There was a telephone conversation which took place between the CE here and the CE in Kerry about the committee for the N22. Probably in TII’s eyes it would be the second priority in Cork. Kerry’s and our priorities have to be matched but we have to remember all our other projects which would also have a priority.
- The non-national roads are our responsibility. It’s not just TII.
- September 1st when people are allowed to cut hedges again. It would help if we could go at it earlier.
Cllr K Murphy (FG): Would it be of any help if a proposal came from here to TII to upgrade the N71 from a secondary route to a national primary?
Mayor: Ok but the recommendation would have to be part of the TII meeting.
Cllr Declan Hurley seconds.
[e] CORRESPONDENCE FROM GOVERNMENT DEPARTMENTS
13. Department of Finance:
(a). Letter dated 18th July, 2016, in response to Council’s motion of 9th May, 2016, regarding the creation of an Irish Public Banking System.
Cllr Jeffers (SF): Welcomes the response. Aware of the current schemes but none are signfiicant enough. Welcomes that they are looking at it.
(b). Letter dated 18th July, 2016, in response to Council’s motion of 8th February, 2016, regarding Capital Acquisitions Tax and unmarried couples.
[f] NOTICES OF MOTION
14. Councillor Des O’Grady:
“To seek a written report on the present number of tenants in the Rental Accommodation Scheme (RAS) in Cork County who are in receipt of Notices of Termination from their landlords. The report to include the present number of tenants on the RAS scheme and the number of contracts that were not renewed in 2015 and 2016 to date. The report to also include the number of tenants who were forced to leave their homes due to landlords issuing notices of termination in the same period and these tenants current housing situation.”
Cllr O’Grady (SF): Thanks for response but is not happy with it. Tenants pay the differential rent in the RAS scheme. Have to be 18 months on rent supplement before you can get on the RAS scheme. So Council believes a tenant’s need has been satisfied when they go onto the RAS scheme. Last year this Council had a target of 75 houses to be taken into the RAS scheme and they took in 22. So RAS tenants being evicted have not enough houses and are dependent on social housing. There aren’t enough social houses and so they become homeless. Wants to guarantee that any person on the RAS scheme who is evicted will get a social house. Very disapopinted with the contracts that were not renewed. There are tenants who have been made homeless in the past year and half. Wants the local authority to recognise it has a duty to these people and they have become homeless. Doesn’t want this to happen any more.
Cllr Mullane (SF): Not happy with the report. Have we bought the houses we refer to? Disappointed that we have not been given the figures requested. Requests an update.
Cllr Twomey (SF): Every tenant I’ve dealt with on RAS says that if the landlord sells out, Cork County Council will rehouse them.
Mayor: People coming out of RAS cannot access HAP and that is very serious and perhaps should be followed up.
Deputy CE: A homeless person gets preference in relation to future allocations. The Council is generally successful in helping people coming out of a RAS house. Will take another couple of weeks to get the information requested.
Cllr O’Grady (SF): What we’re trying to judge here is how deep the problem is. Figures for 2015/16 would indicate how critical it is becoming. Success to date is welcomed but with the growth in the number of people who are coming under notices from landlords, can the Council keep up supplying social housing.
Cllr K Murphy (FG): The cap on purchase of houses is a major bugbear.
Deputy CE: We have got some relief to that and there is flexibility. We would prefer if there was no differential between city and county but it is better than it was.
15. Councillor Danielle Twomey:
“That this council provides a written report on the tendering process of all contracts for all programmes of works, specifically housing maintenance contracts. This report should outline the process from tendering to the completion stage of programme. It should also include whether stage payments are given to contractors and the frequency of inspections made by Cork County Council.”
Cllr Twomey (SF): Work began on building of access ramp to get to a popular beach began in the height of the season and then stopped, fenced off by construction fencing. Another issue rose where carbon monoxide was seeping thorugh a cracked chimney. Housing had to chase up the contractor.
How often does Cork County Council carry out inspections while work is ongoing? To ensure that the contractor is sticking to what is required.
How many inspections were there on ongoing works from 2015 – to date?
Are timelimits adhered to?
How are the interim payments made?
How does the Council decide whether it is an open or restricted tender?
Can we have an increased number of quotes (more than 5)?
When an agreed price is exceeded, does the Council investigate why?
There is a retainment fee of 5% to allow work to be inspected. Can this be increased because it is too low to be an incentive?
Service contracts where we don’t have to use contrstruction template documents – how do we be sure these are being done right?
The fairness of the process was investigated in 2014. Restricted policy does nothing for SMEs.
Seconded by Cllr Mullane. Electricians and plumbers tend to collate jobs in similar areas and prioritise those close to them.
Deputy CE: We have provided a report answering the queries that were raised. There has been a long additional list provided now which would take a long time. We will respond in writing to these separately. Our contracts are administered by professional people who are aware of the conditions which apply nationally to such contracts and they are bound by national figures which are industry-wide accepted.
16. Councillor Eoghan Jeffers:
“That this Local Authority would establish a scholarship scheme to pay for the training contribution at phase two, four and six for five apprentices per year who come from disadvantaged backgrounds.”
Cllr Jeffers (SF): Opposed to the contribution when apprentices are being paid below the minimum wage. Business owner started to pay the scheme for his apprentices. We can be proactive and show leadership in this area. Scheme like this can play a huge part in helping women get access to apprenticeships. The amount of money put into his would be small and the reward would be massive.
Cllr N Collins (Ind): Seconds. Red tape in relation to college admissions and secondary education. We are a nation of hypocrites.
Cllr O’Grady (SF): Also supports. Funding is here in the EDF. We need apprenticeships in all walks of life.
Cllr Coughlan (FF): Very good idea. Would ensure economics wouldn’t be a barrier to the brightest in our education system.
Deputy CE: There is a charge of €1,000 which is levied on apprenticeships at certain stages of their training. Doesn’t understand why we would be giving apprentices such supports when we don’t provide other 3rd level education support. Payment for apprentices ranges from €205/wk in year 1 to much higher in year 4 but apprentices are not recompensed for the time they spend in the CIT. There is no precedent for Cork County Council to give such supports.
Cllr Jeffers: There might not be a precedent but we can show leadership. It is a very small contribution to make. We give money to budding entrepreneurs. Thanks all those who supported. Perhaps the proposal could go to the social inclusion SPC?
17. Councillor Marcia D’Alton:
“That the current reorganisation of the Directorate structures of Cork County Council would include a section dedicated to Recreation and Amenity, the functions of which would include development of a Recreation and Amenity Strategy for the County, co-ordination of Recreation and Amenity developments throughout the Municipal Districts and development of the proposed network of cycling infrastructure throughout County Cork. Easily accessible Recreation and Amenity opportunities are critical for healthy communities and provision of same is a local authority function which is almost always welcome.”
Introduction to motion included under separate cover.
Cllr Cullinane (Ind): Congratulates. We spend a lot of money on amenity grants and to collate that information appropriately we need this kind of a section. This is a clean, clear transparent way of moving this forward.
Deputy CE: Agree with Cllr D’Alton that this is one of the most pleasing aspects of our work and delivery. In the new arrangements from September, thinks we should spread consider this. Will raise it with the new Director of Services of the Municipal Districts, Mary Ryan and is sure she will revert back with her considerations.
Cllr M Hegarty says how positive they are.
Cllr R McCarthy (SF): Supports. We had a motion passed in relation to the upgrading of a playground in Bandon. We were told that upgrading wasn’t the remit of the Council. A committee had originally got funding for it. The playground is old and has been flooded many times. Anything to add to this?
Cllr O’Flynn (FF): Supports the motion. We can be proud that even in bad times our CE insisted that we would keep amenity grants up. What about sending this to an SPC?
Deputy CE: Give Mary Ryan a little time and she will come back to us then. No need to go to an SPC.
18. Mayor Seamus McGrath:
“To request that Cork County Council establish a ‘ Dereliction ‘ taskforce aimed at tackling the problem of dereliction in selected towns in each Municipal District on a pilot basis. This taskforce should be resourced and staffed to facilitate an active and ongoing engagement with property owners and a relentless focus on improving the problem of dereliction.”
Cllr McGrath (FF): Dereliction was one of the items I highlighted when I was elected as Mayor. Acknowledges the work done by the Council even though the legislation is quite restrictive. Knows there is new legislation in relation to vacant sites levies. Would like a town in each Municipal District to be focused on where the Council is actively focused on dereliction in a way that we can prove that action and progress can be made. Is asking that this would be well-resourced. Has discussed this with the CE.
Cllr O’Flynn (FF): Seconds and supports. Dereliction is the scourge of all our towns and villages. This is a major frustration for communities. Speaks of the time, effort and energy that dereliction takes. One town in each division comes first.
Cllr B Moynihan (FF): Yes dereliction is an issue in our Municipal District, especially in Kanturk. Asks respectfully that those who are working on dereliction at present would be recognised as doing their absolute best. Speaks very highly of their Municipal District Officer who repeatedly brings reports to the Municipal District on dereliction. Those efforts need to be enhanced. Zaps the energy of the local enthusiasts. If they see the Council coming in and sorting out a building it does them good.
Cllr M Hegarty (FG): Supports. The CE hopes that one of our towns in West Cork will be a national winner into the future. A small amount of money can go a long way. Painting schemes, art competitions. Look creatively at new initiatives.
Cllr Murphy (SF): Passage West – focus on this please!
Cllr McGrath supports that suggestion.
Cllr N Collins (Ind): Has brought this issue up over the years but with no success. This could be a major solution to our homeless problem.
Cllr K Murphy (FG): Asks that the motion would be amended to include villages.
Cllr Doyle (FF): Disadvantage from an economic point of view, etc.
Cllr D’Alton (Ind): Want to voice support for the proposal and echo the suggestion that Passage West would be one of the pilot areas. Asks that in the drawing up of the scheme, Members would be reported back to regularly so that they could keep aware of how the scheme will work and perhaps be able to contribute suggestions as to how it might operate best.
Deputy CE: No opposition to this motion from his side of the table. Recognise the importance of the public realm in towns. Recognise the efforts done by local people and tidy towns groups. There is a cross over with the vacant sites levy. Town centres form part of that equation too. The Minister’s recent action plan for housing and homelessness mentions dereliction and change of use being supported from commercial to residential.
Mayor: Will be back to Municipal Districts for discussion without delay.
19. Councillor Noel Collins:
“That this Council, in the interests of social justice and equality, request the Minister for Justice to honour the ruling of the European Court in 2012 and allow members of An Garda Síochána to partake in unions and have the right to strike.”
Cllr N Collins (Ind): The most basic human right is the right to have your voice heard. It is wrong that gardai are forced to stay silent …
Our gardai are treated as the doormats of society with the Dept of Justice insisting that gardai get an allowance that is small for working such unsocial hours. The numbers of gardai are falling. Gardai have spoken publicly about their low pay and their difficulties. Despite all this, gardai cannot partake in unions and are not allowed to strike. The Court ruled in favour of the gardai but the Minister for Justice has not yet honoured the EU ruling.
Cllr O’Grady (SF): Seconds the motion. Every worker should have the right to join a union and the gardai are no different.
Cllr Culinane (Ind): Have met with lots of gardai who have rented out their homes, are living in their cars and who struggle badly. They have a right to a voice and we are the very people who should be supporting this in every way.
Cllr O’Flynn (FF): Gardai work over and above the call of duty. We should tread carefully because we need both the gardai (and the army). But they should be able to make their case.
Cllr Conway (Ind): Anyone within the state should be able to become a member of a union. We are talking here about the EU Court of Human Rights decision.
Cllr D Collins (Ind): Supports. Our gardai these days are badly paid and …
Cllr N Collins (Ind): Thanks Council members for support. Shame on us as a nation for tolerating our injustice. To the garda, I would say you are either allowed to be union members or be well paid. The state cannot have it both ways.
Cllr K Murphy had some dissatifaction with the inclusion of the word strike.
Cllr Collins will not change the wording of the motion because he had the present wording checked out by a solicitor.
Cllr Conway: if one is in a union, one has the right to strike.
Cllr Murphy (FG): Has concerns about the impact of another Blue Flu.
It was agreed to pass the motion.
20. Councillor Ian Doyle:
“That Cork County Council would write to Minister of Social Protection to look at an increase of the Budget allocated to our Citizens Advice offices. These offices are a vital source of information throughout our County but with limited resources are totally dependent on vital Voluntary help to provide the service required.”
(I had to go out.)
All compliment the volunteers who run the Citizens Advice centres.
Suspension of Standing Orders:
Cllr O’Grady (SF): Government struck a rate for Irish Water properties rather than have individual local authorities doing it. Resulting shortfall to Cork County Council was made up by government by €1.3m. The government has said that this year, there will be no make-up of the €1.3m. This will result in loss of services, etc. Is the Council aware of this? Have efforts been made to secure the funding on this? Thinks we need to buttonhole the minister on this. He knows how badly we need this funding. We need to act now. The holiday season is here and we cannot wait until it is over.
Cllr Hayes (SF): Supports. We were given some funding last year towards the shortfall in the rates but this year there will be a gaping hole. We will be starting the budgetary process when we come back in September. We are running the motor tax office out here for money we can’t recoup. €1.3m is very serious funding. Asks that we support impressing the importance of this on the Minister.
Cllr Mullane (SF): ESB, Vodafone, etc. are all very profitable companies. Small businesses are struggling. We have a homeless and housing crisis. Taking anything from local services has a very negative impact.
Cllr O’Flynn (FF): Fully supports. This function should be in Cork County Council. Our communities and vital services will suffer. We’re hearing every day about how well the economy doing. Now we hear there will be a drop in funding to County Councils. We at least need the €1.3m shortfall like last year.
Cllr K Murphy (FG): Supports motion. Thinks we were informed last year that we would not have the difference made up this year.
Deputy CE: The Department did say last year that this was a one-off support. We haven’t had a recent communication from the Department. Sean remembers that when this arose first, we did write to the Department. So we have already put down a marker. Doesn’t affect just Cork County Council, it affects all other local authorities too. Could perhaps raise it with other colleagues? There is no suggestion that the shortfall will be recovered from other businesses so we will have to make other arrangements in relation to balancing the books.
Cllr O’Grady (SF): The statement was issued by a previous government, so how could the then Minister make a statement on what is going to happen next year? Asks that we write on behalf of the Council.
Cllr Murphy (FG): We need to refer to every Council to suggest that they would ask for the same.
Agreed and we will also send to City and County Managers Association as well.
[g] CORRESPONDENCE FROM OTHER BODIES
Letter dated 12th July, 2016, in response to Council’s motion of 27th June, 2016, regarding the screening of “Atlantic” documentary.
Letter from RTE
Cllr Colman is very pleased with this.
[h] VOTES OF CONGRATULATIONS
22. VOTES OF CONGRATULATIONS (if any)
23. ANY OTHER BUSINESS
Cllr Coughlan (FF): Asks Cork County Council to expedite the removal of gravel from the Bandon river downstream of the weir. We are afraid of flash flooding in the early autumn season. These gravel patches are clearly visible. The window of opportunity is now before September when IFI can block these works.
Cllr R McCarthy (SF) on the same issue. Comments in particular on the appropriate time and the low level of the water.
Cllr James O’Donovan (FG): Agrees. Hears the work is starting towards the Innishannon side and working up.
Cllr Linehan-Foley (Ind): Our Municipal District meetings are at the beginning of the month. The lighthousekeeper’s cottage in Youghal has just gone for sale. Is asking Cork County Council to investigate the potential behind the tourist value of this cottage. Is very concerned about its sale. The lighthousekeeper’s cottage preserves the access to the historic lighthouse site. Asks that we write to Irish Lights and tourism to see can we get money. Maybe Failte Ireland could help? Lighthouse is belonging to Irish Lights. Town Council had hoped to buy the keepers cottage. Irish Lights took it over. One of the only lighthouses in Ireland within walking distance of a town centre. Beautiful piece of land. Very concerned about the sale of it and who it might be sold to. Wants support from Councillors to ask Irish Lights to not sell it off nilly willy.
Cllr Hegarty (FG): We should urge all interested parties with an interest in tourism to explore the possibilities of acquiring this. Crucial that we do not let this slip out of our hands.
Cllr Twomey (SF): Lightouse would add to the tourism. It already brings in a lot of tourists.
Youghal has a huge maritime heritage and this is an outstanding opportunity for the Council to come to an arrangement with the owners.
Cllr Hurley (Ind): Was in the area on Saturday night and so supports.
Deputy CE: We have in other years taken gravel from the river before the winter. We do it as close to September as we can. We will contact the OPW and lend our support to the sugggestion that it be done quickley.
Is not familiar with keeper’s cottage. Doesn’t know how much Irish Lights might be looking for it. Will look into it.
This ended the meeting.