Green ‘shocked and angry’ at cost of Market Square and Stapleton Place repairs
Sinn Féin Councillor Jennifer Green has said she was ‘shocked and angry’ to discover that almost €200,000 of tax payers money would be spent ‘fixing’ the Market Square and Stapleton Place.
Additional works resulting from Stage 3 safety audit, which is carried out at the completion of the project, cost €119,730 plus VAT. The provision of pedestrian signals at the Market Square cost €118,771 plus VAT and the cost of ‘fixing’ Stapleton Place cost €44,730 plus VAT. All of these figures were obtained by The Argus newspaper.
Commenting on the matter, Cllr Green said that “proper public consultation is essential and I don’t just mean that a project goes on public consultation for eight weeks and then people can submit their proposals. I mean that various groups, shops, citizens in the area that are going to be affected by these works should be brought into the council and have meetings with the engineers. At the end of the day it’s the people in the area who know the area the best.”
The Mulholland Avenue woman, who will be running in May’s local elections said mistakes were made that shouldn’t have been.
“In regards to Stapleton Place, the threshold for public consultation is roughly €125,000 and because the works coming in were under that amount, there was no public consultation process. However, because of this, mistakes were made. If you add the current €45,000+ to fix the problems, in fact it would have come over that threshold, so a public consultation should have taken place.”
She said Sinn Féin believe that there should be no thresholds and that public consultations are vital in any works that are happening in an area.
“I firmly believe that if proper public consultations had occurred in Stapleton Place that the beautiful trees would still be there and we would have worked the cycle lanes in a way that works for all. I’m disgusted that those beautiful mature trees had to be cut down. All of this could have been avoided,” she said.
Concluding, Cllr Green said: “There are questions to be asked and I am talking to my colleagues in the party to decide what the best way forward is so this does not happen again. No-one in this country seems to be held accountable for wasting taxpayers’ money and that needs to be addressed at all levels.”