A significant surge in payment of the €100 Household Charge in North Tipperary in recent weeks has resulted in the lifting of a Government threat to further slash funding for local government services in the county.
During the summer Environment Minister Phil Hogan, noting that just over half of North Tipperary householders had paid the charge, threatened to cut the County Council’s Local Government Fund of €14.5 million by €1.5 million. Such a cut would have resulted in major cuts in local government services across the county.
But over the past six weeks or so a surge in payments saw a further 8 per cent of householders pay the charge, thereby removing the threat of the swinging cuts being imposed.
Two out of three householders in North Tipperary have now paid the new €100 charge
Via Nenagh Guardian
By God how they all tremble when the hear Hogan’s bark
We learn from the Offaly express that 7,041 non-Irish nationals were living in Offaly at the time of the Census, accounting for 9.2% of the population of the county.
According to figures released by the Central Statistics Office, of the non-Irish nationals resident in the county, 1,865 were UK nationals – the largest non-Irish nationality in the county, followed by Polish nationals with 1,566 persons.
To be consigned to living in the bogs of Offaly these people must have suffered desperate deprivation elsewhere
From the Munster express we observe
The Munster Express has learned from reliable sources that the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government, Mr Phil Hogan, TD, is likely to announce this week that Waterford City Council and Waterford County Council will definitely be merged and that the headquarters of the new body will be in the county, not the city.
While such a move has been opposed by many politicians from both local authorities, it will be a particularly bitter pill for Waterford city to swallow.
It looks like cheerio to Waterford city Council oh well maybe a few less people claiming expenses
From the Gorey Guardian we lean
WE’RE sitting on a goldmine. Literally. Prospectors have struck gold in North Wexford, and say the samples taken to date have the potential to yield hundreds of millions of dollars worth of gold and other precious metals.
‘It was very exciting,’ said Liam McGrattan, who works in Investor Relations with the IMC Exploration Group plc.
‘ This is a pretty big strike. I’d compare it to the oil strike off the coast of Cork recently,’ said Liam.
‘If we got two big strikes we could get rid of the IMF and the ECB out of the country,’ he joked. He said the operation would require an underground mine, meaning a huge jobs boost for the local community.
Well now Liam good news indeed but I see you work in investor relations. A profession well known for kite flying
CUTBACKS to the Local Government fund for County Waterford are not as severe as previously feared, however Minister Phil Hogan is still refusing to release the third quarterly allowance of €507,000 and will reduce the amount available in the final quarter if more home owners don’t stump up payment for the household charge.
The news was greeted by some relief at last week’s meeting of Waterford County Council, which came two weeks after councillors abandoned their meeting at the start of the month such was their fury at the possibility of the council losing €2m in funding.
After seeking clarification from Minister Phil Hogan, management at the County Council learned that the adjustment made to the General Purpose Grant payment in Quarter 3 is confirmed and will not be reviewed further. No reason has been provided for why this amount of money is being withheld.
Waterford County Manager Denis McCarthy said that this meant that the €507,000 due to them for the third quarter would not be handed over. In respect of the final quarter payment, Waterford County Council is still at risk of losing another €90,000.
The monies, which are to be paid in November, will not be affected if over 65% of people comply with the household charge. For county and city councils with compliance rates of between 60% and 65% a deduction of 0.5% of the initial General Purpose Allocation will be made, which will locally amount to €90,000. So far, 61 % have paid the charge in the County.
Mr McCarthy added that spending will be prioritised for areas deemed most in need, with county roads earmarked for works.
Cllr James Tobin said that no matter how many people pay the charge, Waterford would still be left short vital funding.
“We are not getting €507,000 back no matter what. That tells people out there that you were right. Even if they pay the county will be left short. Where is that money gone to? I can hazard a guess that it’s gone to O’Reilly’s big hole in the health service. It’s a disgrace. They can glamourise it anyway they like, we are still down €600,000.”
Cllr Michael J. O’Ryan said that even if there was 100% compliance at this stage the County would still be fined, while Cllr Brendan Mansfield labelled the whole thing a “farce” and said it was bullyboy tactics by the Minister when he encouraged councils to follow the lead of the council in Clare when it came to delaying student grants for those who had not paid the charge.
He said there was a lot of anger amongst people who had paid the charge out of fear only to find out that cuts are still to be made in the area.
“The knife has still gone in, not as deep as we thought, but to the value of €600,000. It’s gone in to bail out the bondholders,” he added.