THE ‘disconnect’ between Irish Water and public representatives has been likened to ‘ringing Santa Claus’.
The comment was made by Cllr Danny Collins (Ind) at a West Cork Municipal District meeting. He complained that despite the huge number of water breakages at the Ropewalk in Bantry they are still ‘getting nowhere’ with Irish Water.
The councillor had tabled a motion calling on the Council to write to Irish Water and asking them to ‘immediately replace the mains water pipes along the Ropewalk to Seafield.’
It was Cllr John O’Sullivan (FG) who suggested the County Mayor should write to the CEO of Irish Water because there is a breakdown of communication among the minions – despite the fact that Irish Water hosts regular ‘clinics’ at County Hall.
Cllr Paul Hayes (SF) described the clinics as ‘a waste of time because we just get a reference number and there is no follow-up.’
He said: ‘We need to meet Irish Water representatives who know the area and what they are talking about.’
Cllr Collins said the breakages at the Ropewalk are causing ‘huge inconvenience’ to local residents and businesses at a local enterprise park, as well as the very busy Westlodge Hotel.
According to Cllr Collins, the hotel was full to the gills and had to bring in water – at its own expense – to do the basics, such as wash dishes.
He said it has been a busy tourism season, yet businesses were being asked to get by without the most basic of human requirements.
Cllr Hayes (SF) said the people of Rosscarbery – especially those in Burgatia and Bohonagh – have also reached the end of their tether regarding water issues.
‘If – in the case of a coffee machine – you are pressing for water and there is no water,’ he said, ‘you are going to burn out the engine of a piece of equipment that costs between €800 and €1,000.’
However, county mayor, Patrick Gerard Murphy (FF) said one town’s loss could mean a gain for Bantry.
He said he had recently been made aware of one project that is unlikely to go ahead this year and that the money could be used to replace the water mains at the Ropewalk instead.
It was Cllr Christopher O’Sullivan (FF) who complained about the ‘disconnect’ but Cllr Collins who likened it to ‘ringing Santa Claus.’