FERMOY FLOOD RELIEF PLAN ALLOCATED FUNDING
A spokesperson for the Office of Public Works has revealed that capital allocation funding for the Fermoy flood relief plan has been approved for 2009, writes Joe Leogue.
“We estimate approximately €50m will be allocated to our various flood relief schemes throughout the country next year, and between five and six million of that will be earmarked for the first phase of the Fermoy scheme,” the spokesperson for the OPW told The Avondhu, adding that the total expenditure on the various aspects of the Fermoy scheme should cost approximately €30m over the next 5-6 years.
The disclosure comes following further concerns surrounding the project’s future, as discussed at this week’s meeting of the Northern committee of Cork County Council.
At that meeting last Monday the most recent update on the progress of the scheme only indicated that the OPW was awaiting approval from the Department of Finance for the project. The update provoked some disquiet amongst members of Cork County Council who feared for the future of the flood relief scheme.
“We were promised by the then Minister Ahern last January during the flood that work on the plan would start in the summer, then we were told autumn, now it seems we are in limbo,” Cllr Aileen Pyne said last Monday, referencing the visit of the then Minister of State with special responsibility for the OPW Noel Ahern during the serious flooding in Fermoy at the start of the year.
Councillors pointed to further flooding in August as an example of the need for the measures in the town.
While Mallow-based Councillor Noel O’Connor supported the Fermoy councillors’ call for a definitive date for the commencement of works, he took exception at the suggestion that Fermoy had suffered more flooding since the implementation of a similar plan upriver at Mallow. When informed of the announcement Cllr Aileen Pyne said it was ‘fantastic news.’
“At our meeting this week we were told that there was no further communication with the OPW bar their acknowledgement of our query on the status of the scheme,” she told The Avondhu.
“If true I welcome the announcement wholeheartedly but I would like to see it in writing,” she added.
The news will come as a boost to developers such as the Shipton Group who hope to appeal the rejection of planning permission for a retail centre in the town. One of the reasons given by planners for the rejection was the frequent flooding suffered in the mart area.
Thursday 23rd October 7:42pm