Laois County Council have taken action on cleaning up and making safe a number of houses in Portlaoise’s O’Moore Place, it was revealed at last week’s meeting of Portlaoise Town Council.
Cllr Caroline Dwane proposed a motion calling on Laois County Council for an update on the owners of the properties and what action the council had taken since the last request made by her to have the properties cleaned up and made safe.
In a written reply to the request, Angela McEvoy of the planning department revealed that improvement works are being carried out and the derelict sites levy has been paid on no. 18 O’Moore Place; a derelict sites notice will be issued soon on no. 53; upgrading works were due to take place on no. 65 in March, but no improvements were carried out and a new file is now being prepared; and the file is closed on no. 23, which is no longer deemed to be a derelict site.
Cllr Dwane was also informed by town manager, Michael Rainey that the sale of nos. 57 and 59 O’Moore Place is still with the council’s solicitors and has not closed as yet.
Mr Rainey also said that Laois County Council have applied for funding for the renovation of no. 35.
“No. 18 was the bane of my life for the last seven years, it caused huge problems,” said Cllr Dwane. “I’m delighted to see now the owner has started work on it.
“No. 23 was left vacant after an elderly lady was rehoused by Laois County Council and that created another problem, with the vacant property there was anti-social behaviour,” she continued, going on to suggest the council could perhaps sell the house on.
“That would be an ideal home for someone on the waiting list, there are 400 on the list,” she pointed out.
She went on to say that no. 35 requires “a good deal of work”, and asked whether the owners of nos. 53 and 65 had been identified.
With regards to the unclosed sale of nos. 57 and 59, Cllr Dwane remarked that she knew many people who would love a house there.
“They’re in bad need of being cleaned up. I would impress upon the owners not to leave them lying idle in the state they’re in,” she said.