Flooding Relief Minister Kevin Boxer Moran at Irishtown in Mountmellick. Pic: Denis Byrne
Money is 'assured' to carry out work that could help to prevent a repeat of the flooding that hit Mountmellick and Portarlington in Laois, according to Laois Sinn Fein TD Brian Stanley.
He made the claim after being in contact with Flood Relief Minister of State Kevin ‘Boxer’ Moran. Dep Stanley said the Minister of State has approved funding to remove obstacles from river channels to prevent flooding in towns in Laois.
“I discussed this with Minister of State Moran a number of times. Mountmellick and Portarlington need works done to remove obstacles in the Owenass, Blackwater and Barrow rivers. Bridge arches need to be cleared and trees and silt banks along the rivers need to be removed to improve capacity and allow water to flow freely.
"Minister of State Moran assured me that funding will now be made available from a pilot scheme to carry out such works," he said.
The Laois TD said also discussed with him the need for long-awaited flood protection measures in both Mountmellick and Portarlington.
"A scheme for both has been submitted to the Department of Public Expenditure and the OPW. The scheme for Mountmellick will now need to be changed due to the extent of the flooding 2 weeks ago. The CFRAM flood risk report which is due out soon will determine what is needed in terms of priority works. The Minister of State assured me that his Department will fund the plan once it is approved," said Dep Stanley.
The Sinn Féin TD said he would be holding the Government to these commitments as he said they are essential to preventing serious flooding in Mountmellick and Portarlington in the future.