THE refusal by Transport Infrastructure Ireland (TII) to meet Cork County Council was criticised by several councillors last week.
Cork County Council wrote to the TII last month inviting personnel from TII to attend a meeting of the Council’s Development Committee in relation to the Network Management and Improvements on national roads in the county.
However, a reply from TII said they are ‘not in a position, nor is it our policy, to send representatives to attend Local Authority meetings.’
But they did say that they would be pleased to meet with a small deputation from Cork County Council members and officials at their offices in Dublin.
Cllr Seamus McGrath (FF) said the response from TII was ‘disappointing and unacceptable and very undemocratic’ but he said that the Council should take them up with the offer to meet a small deputation.
Cllr Paul Hayes (SF) said that as a member of the Roads Special Purposes Committee (SPC) he was disappointed with the response.
‘We have lots of projects of mutual interest here and we won’t eat the heads off them. We have motions that need to be answered and I would ask them to revise their policy,’ said Cllr Hayes.
Cllr Joe Carroll (FF) said that this once again highlighted their lack of interest in West Cork and cited the ‘appalling surface’ in Leap as an example of TII showing more interest in doing stuff outside 30 mph speed limits.
‘We have to get more respect from them or we will fall off the map altogether here in West Cork. The Ballydehob to Bantry road on the N71 is not fit for heavy traffic,’ said Cllr Carroll. Cllr Kevin Murphy (FG) said that they, as a Council, should ask the Minister for Transport, Tourism & Sport to direct them to change their policy. ‘It’s two fingers to us here in Cork County Council and they have the cheek to send back this saucy letter,’ said Cllr Murphy.
Cllr Patrick Gerard Murphy (FF) said the NRA (now the TII) was set up to work with Cork County Council but now it seemed that ‘they’re a stand alone body.’
‘They should be engaging with us yet they won’t consult with us or invest in the road network in West Cork,’ said Cllr Murphy.
County Mayor Cllr John Paul O’Shea said that they will try to arrange a meeting with TII and they would write to the acting Minister for Transport, Tourism & Sport to get the TII to change their policy about not attending local authority meetings.