Councillors ‘helpless’ oversubstation

Laois County Councillors said they felt ‘helpless’ at a recent public meeting of the Ratheniska Timahoe Spink Substation Action Group.

Laois County Councillors said they felt ‘helpless’ at a recent public meeting of the Ratheniska Timahoe Spink Substation Action Group.

“I felt helpless. People were looking for our support, but what could I offer. It was demoralising,” Councillor Catherine Fitzgerald said.

Cllr James Daly said: “If this goes ahead it will be the biggest development and the biggest eyesore the county has ever seen. We were at a meeting in Ratheniska last week and they are all in shock at what is being proposed.

Cllr Padraig Fleming expressed the significance of the aquafeir and it’s importance to the the southern half of the county.

“There would be serious consequences if anything happened to that water supply. That alone should be enough to knock this on the head,”he said.

Cllr Tom Mulhall said it was important that the local reprensentatives had an input into the submission and agreed that he felt ‘helpless’ at the recent public meeting.

While Cllr Wille Aird said it was not democracry working well, when Eirgrid go straight to An Bord Pleanala.

“It’s high time the Minister got involved now, they should have to go through the same planning process as everyone else.”

County Manager, Peter Carey said the council’s submission would be based on ensuring proper planning and sustainable development.

He said he was meeting the Action Group to facilitate them and give them as much information as possible.