Report to Dublin South East Constituency Council – July 2011.
Financial pressures and the increasing reduction of Council services continue to dominate the agenda. This will see reductions in street cleansing, slower maintenance response and the possibility of withdrawing altogether from Waste Collection. This central issue of the Financing of Local Government must be addressed if we are to ever resolve our problems.
Housing, Social and Community affairs Strategic Policy Committee:
This Committee, which I now Chair, has agreed a new Policy called “Choice Based Housing Scheme” this will speed up the allocation of housing in low demand areas and it is hoped contribute to positive community renewal. The Housing SPC has also agreed a major new policy on the allocation of empty units that will enable new tenants acquire empty units in advance of the Council carrying out various maintenance works. This will have the effect of ensuring quicker allocations, reduced pressure on the maintenance department and higher income flow to Council. The Committee has also commenced a review of the Community Grants scheme and improving housing facilities and opportunities for people with Disabilities.
Little Museum of Dublin:
The new Little Museum of Dublin at 15 Stephen’s Green is a quirky addition to the Dublin tourist trail. It has been developed with the assistance of D C C and the Dublin Regional Authority and is allied to the City of a thousand Welcomes launched recently. The Museum is seeking loans of items that might be of interest to Dubliners and tourists alike. I have actively supported both of these.
Battle for Hume Street “2”
A campaign Group has been established to try and save the structure of the former Hume Street Hospital and develop it as a Cultural space. I have worked with the campaign, attended their meetings and arranged for them to make a presentation to the Area Committee. The Committee are hoping that some of those now prominent citizens who were involved in the Save Hume Street Campaign of many years ago might use their influence to good affect this time.
Business in the Community:
One of the interesting things happening during this recession is the growth of Traders Associations. In the Pembroke Rathmines area alone we have seen the formation of the Ranelagh Traders Association, the Donnybrook Village Business Initiative, Ballsbridge Traders Association and ad hoc groups in Rathmines and Rathgar. I have been working with these on a number of ideas to improve their potential and with that the protection of our urban villages.
I have continued to meet with various local groups and many individuals on issues of concern and have participated in the Planning, Traffic, Finance and Protocol Committees of the Council in addition to work as Secretary/Whip of the Labour Group.