A Notice of Motion from Councillor Seamus Hanafin has urged Tipperary County Council to take private estates in charge throughout the county, but especially in Thurles and Two-Mile-Borris where he named ten such estates.
A Notice of Motion from Fianna Fail Councillor Seamus Hanafin called for the implementation of a programme of taking estates in charge and he mentioned the likes of Cluain Glas, Marlstone Manor, the Willows, Hazelwood, Elmwood and Ard Carrig in Thurles; Dun an Ri, Ardleigh, Glencarrig and Castlepark in Two Mile Borris. Cllr Hanafin was informed by planning official Mr Brian Beck that no application had been made for Marlstone Manor in Thurles and that it required a two third majority of residents to be in favour of such a move.
Cllr Hanafin said that he hoped the work of taking in charge would commence immediately and he hoped that the position of Irish Water in terms of infrasturcture would not delay matters. He added that there is a lot of frustration in these estates, many of which are left in deplorable condition, and at a time when residents are paying a household charge and property tax, it is time that something was done to sort the mess out.
He suggested that roads, lighting, footpaths etc should be dealt with by the council if it is the case that Irish Water are holding up the other infrastructural issues.
Cllr Jackie Cahill supported Cllr Hanafin and said that is is ‘inconceivable’ that some of the estates have not yet been taken in charge. Cllr Michael Smith added that each councillor could produce a similar list, while Cllrs Willie Kennedy and Jim Ryan also supported Cllr Hanafin’s call.
Mr Beck said that a taking in charge policy would be one of the first items to be tackled by the Strategic Policy Committee. There are a large number of applications throughout the county, he said, and each one has different issues and different problems. Irish Water is now a big player in the situation, he added, and he admitted that it is difficult at this stage to define what role Irish Water will play.
District Manager Mr Matt Shortt said that the CEO Mr Joe MacGrath has commissioned a study as to the potential lilability the council may face. There are many stakeholders including builders, developers, insurance companies, bond holders, management companies and banks, to name just a few, he said.
Cllr Micheal Lowry said that it is little consolation to people who have been frustrated for years, to know that there is a process in place. Cllr Jackie Cahill agreed and said that there must be a way of getting around the problems being experienced. Cllr David Doran meanwhile said that they are the last port of call for residents and have a duty to do something for them.