Legal steps in Garden Village dispute

Laois County Council has again been forced to go down the legal route to get money needed for an unfinished Portlaoise estate.

Laois County Council has again been forced to go down the legal route to get money needed for an unfinished Portlaoise estate.

Last week’s meeting of Portlaoise Town Council heard that the council had made an initial claim on the bond for Garden Village, but this was subsequently increased due to problems with a pump station in the estate.

“The bond company is refusing to pay out on the second claim made. The matter has been referred to our solicitors,” Kieran Kehoe, Planning Department, wrote in a written reply to the meeting.

Cllr Jerry Lodge, who asked for an update on the progress regarding the taking in charge of the estate, said that while it was not the council’s fault, there was an onus on them to take the estate in charge.

“How long more could this go on for. This could be dragged out indefinitely,” he said.

Cllr Lodge asked that Mr Kehoe or a representative from the housing department attend the next Town Council meeting and bring councillors up to date.

“The bond holder has lost a bet and when you lose you must pay. They have a duty to the people to honour them.”

Cllr Lodge said this was not the only bond holder refusing to pay.

The previous meeting of the Town Council heard that the Council had been forced to bring legal proceedings over a refusal to release cash for work on the unfinished estate Rockview Estate on the Mountrath Road.

Supporting the original motion, Cllr Alan Hand said the residents had completed a list of work which needed to be completed and would have cost in the region of €30,000.

“There was a pile of clay about 20ft high in the middle of the green, but that has been moved since,” he said, explaining some of the problems in the estate.

Cllr Hand said that some of the people who lived in the apartments had sewage in their homes when the pump station failed.

“It’s ironic because as the crow flies, the pumping station is very close to the treatment plant but still doesn’t work efficiently.”

Cllr Hand said developers were ignoring enforcement notices sent from local authorities.

“You might as well send them a docket from Paddy Power’s, as they don’t heed enforcement notices.”