TEMPERS RISE OVER FERMOY HOTEL MEETING
Mayor Tadhg O’Donovan has confirmed that the date for the Fermoy Town Council meeting on the proposed Lawton group hotel development will take place on Monday, September 22 at 6pm. In revealing the date Mayor O’Donovan further defended the setting of the date following recent criticism from town councillors Michael Hanley and Peter Merrigan, published in last week’s issue of The Avondhu.
“The date has been chosen as it is one that is acceptable and suitable for the Lawtons. It will be a special council meeting, held in the Town Hall, with an agenda sent out and it will be open to the press,” he confirmed. However the Mayor’s reply did little to quell unrest amongst some councillors, one of which described his handling of the hotel issue as ‘a shambles.’
“I too have been in touch with the Lawtons,” an angry Cllr Hanley told The Avondhu, “And they were not aware of any dates being discussed after their letter went out at the start of August.”
“Questions need to be asked as to how it is possible to arrange a meeting with the Lawtons without knowing if the councillors elected to represent the people of Fermoy would be available or not. There was no communication with 5 of us, as far as I know, on the matter.”
Cllr Hanley emphasised the point that all councillors needed to be present to rezone the land of the proposed hotel, adding that he was aware that the Lawtons are to go on holiday early this month, the reason given as to why the meeting will not go ahead until September 22.
“Once Mayor O’Donovan got the letter (from the Lawton group proposing the meeting) he should have called an ad hoc, 20 minute meeting with the council to agree a time, place and agenda for when we can all be there. None of this was done and as a result I was forced to take action myself,” he said, referring to the petition of 5 councillors submitted to Town Hall two weeks ago calling for a meeting. As reported in last week’s issue of The Avondhu Mayor O’Donovan said he had yet to receive this letter.
“If he didn’t get that letter then he must not have received any of his mail as I dropped it into Town Hall where all his official correspondence, as the Mayor of Fermoy, the job he is paid to do, is sent,” Cllr Hanley said angrily.
“I won’t accept that, it is absolute horseshit, and you can print that,” he continued. “I cannot, as it happens, make Mayor O’Donovan’s proposed date for genuine reasons and I believe that one other councillor is in a similar position.”
Cllr Hanley’s angry outburst continued as he said he was “personally mystified” as to why Mayor O’Donovan has taken his current approach to the matter.
“He has embroiled us in what is an unnecessary action. At this stage there has yet to be a meeting arranged for the councillors to discuss the Lawton proposal before we meet them. It is a shambles that a meeting has been arranged with the developers when at least 2 councillors will not be in a position to attend.”
Cllr Hanley concluded by calling into question Mayor O’Donovan’s interest in the hotel development.
“All this has been carried out by a man who did not attend sessions on the proposals in Fermoy House and who did not attend a meeting in council chambers with a prospective group interested in leasing the hotel.
"I am personally at a loss as to what to do, but I and the other councillors will not be taken for fools. All this is a bridge too far for me and it needs to be remembered that the matter at hand is deadly serious for Fermoy,” Cllr Hanley said.
Thursday 4th September 6:47pm