No cash for Laois court house replacement in Portlaoise as it is at 'exploratory' stage

€22 million set aside by Government seven buildings to finish this year

Conor Ganly

Reporter:

Conor Ganly

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No cash has been set aside for a new Laois court house in Portlaoise because it is no replacement plan as been approved nor is any contract in place.

The Tánaiste and Minister for Justice Frances Fitzgerald is to tell TDs and Senators today, (Tuesday, April 12) that €22 million in public money has been set aside in 2017 for the completion of a Public Private Partnership project which covers seven courthouse venues.

This includes new courthouses being developed in Drogheda, Letterkenny, Limerick and Wexford while substantial refurbishment and extension works courthouses in Cork, Mullingar and Waterford.

The court service told the Leinster Express that Portlaoise is not part of the current tranche of seven buildings but is one of five / six major projects in the "exploratory / planning stage". Because of this it does not need to be in this year's public spending estimates.

"As no capital monies are needed until plan approval and contract signing stages in such matters," said a statement.

The Courts Service and Laois County Council are reviewing sites in Portlaoise to replace the troublesome building on Main Street.

The building was at the centre of a stabbing incident in Portlaoise last week and also contribute to a big traffic tail back in the Laois town.