Kildare turfcutters endorse Joanne

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turfcutters pic

Kildare Turf Cutters Association have endorsed Joanne Pender (Independent) as their preferred candidate in the upcoming local elections. The announcement was made at a well attended Turf Cutters meeting held in Prosperous on Sunday 13th April.

Fiona Conlan, President of the Turf Cutters Association & Secretary of the Kildare Turf Cutters Association said “I am personally delighted to endorse Joanne Pender in the upcoming local elections. Our organisation of Domestic Turf Cutters has every confidence that Joanne will represent us fairly and honestly in her role as a Local Councillor for the greater Newbridge Area. Joanne has struck me as an ordinary hard-working lady with strong principles, honesty and integrity and I would hope that the local people of Newbridge & Kildare would show strength in numbers and vote for her on May 23rd. She has a proven track record in standing up for what she believes in and we are confident that she will represent the interests & concerns of the many 100’s of domestic turf-cutters to the best of her ability. Joanne Pender is my number 1 vote”

‘I’m delighted the Turf Cutters have such confidence in me’ said Joanne Pender. ‘It’s an honour to be asked to represent them in the council chamber. Most of the turf cutters in our area are domestic cutters, they cut turf to fuel their homes. Fuel poverty is a serious issue in austerity Ireland and by denying domestic turf cutters the right to cut their bogs this government are forcing those people into fuel poverty. We already have children going to school hungry and many elderly people are forced to choose between food or fuel. That is wrong and needs to be addressed. We cannot allow the same thing to happen to the turf cutters as well.’

Roscommon-South Leitrim TD and European election candidate Luke ‘Ming’ Flanagan was at the meeting and encouraged all turf cutters and their supporters to vote for Joanne in the upcoming elections. ‘Joanne is a great candidate, I’ve no doubt that she will be a fantastic representative for the people of Newbridge-Kildare. Having spoken to her on a number of occasions I was struck by her honesty and integrity and am convinced she’ll make a fine councillor.’


Curragh Camp hypocrisy exposed!

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See below the written reply to the questions on foot of representations I have made to Clare Daly TD and the YouTube video’s below of the leaders questions and discussion on the subject of housing in The Curragh Camp.This blows Alan Shatters previous argument out of the water that they can “no longer subsidise” the people living in the Curragh Camp. It is clear from these figures that the Department of Defence is actually profiting over €120K per year from rental income from the houses in The Curragh. Therefore why doesn’t the DOD leave those families where they are, stop evicting them, and use those profits to upgrade the existing housing stock and the further 47 empty dwellings.I find it preposterous that the Department of Defence are evicting families, some whom were residents for over 40 when there are thousands on housing waiting lists in Kildare. Not only are they evicting them but they are relinquishing any duty of care to these families after all the years of service they have given. I know Shatter says they are for military use but surely there are other military families and/or single parents within the Defence Forces who may otherwise be on the council housing list who could avail of these vacant properties?

It beggars belief that the DOD can spend over one million i.e. €1,013,121 ( 2010-€203,366, 2011-€259,739, 2012-€275,008 and 2013-€275,008) as seen in the Dail debate below on protecting US military flights at Shannon which by the way contravenes Article 1 of the Hague Convention on Neutrality which states “The territory of neutral Powers is inviolable” yet they cannot protect vulnerable families who have given a lifelong service to the Defence Forces and the state.

(Dail debate re: costs to protect US Military flights at Shannon)

(Written responses to questions put to Alan Shatter on my behalf by Clare Daly)

(Video’s of the Dail discussions and debates) See alsowww.claredaly.ie

Water Bills delayed until after elections

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water waste

So it will be August at best before we find out how much the new water bills will be, believed to be in the order of € 350. Meanwhile, Kildare residents are still suffering from poor water quality, low pressure and leaks.

We are told the reason we will have to pay twice for our water is for conservation purposes. Surely if we are serious about conservation then the first thing we would do is upgrade our leaking system? However the introduction of water charges has nothing to do with conserving water. Irish Water have the possible option of increasing charges if demand is lower than expected, that means that if we conserve our water, we will end up paying more for it. It is increasingly obvious that this double-charging of people for their water supply has nothing to do with conservation, and everything to do with squeezing every last penny out of working people.

It is also interesting to note that while Irish Water are prepared to spend €50 million on consultants, they’ve only set aside €30 million to fix leaks. Our supply system leaks about 40% of the water it carries, €30 million to fix that is a proverbial ‘drop in the ocean’ (pardon the pun). Irish Water also says it is up to members of the public to find leaks in their pipes, and that if they don’t find them within the first year, then it will not be Irish Water’s responsibility to pay for repairs.

We don’t know exactly what Irish Water got for its €50 million as it is exempt from the Freedom of Information act. This means that no one really knows what is really happening behind the doors of Irish Water. €50 million is a lot of money, so what could it have been spent on?

Despite his grossly inflated salary of €200,000 per year, €50 million would have kept Irish Water Chief Executive John Tierney employed for 250 years.

€50 million is more than double what was cut in 2013 from the Respite Carers Grant (€23 million).

€50 million is enough to pay over 1800 workers on the median wage for a year.

With nearly 100,000 people on the housing waiting list nationwide, this money could have been used to provide homes to people who desperately need them. With the families of retired soldiers being forced from their homes in the Curragh camp, a small portion of this money could have been used to re-house all of them.

Phil Hogan takes over Donegal!

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Donegal leading the way with the lowest registration for household charge, lowest registration for property tax, highest No vote for the fiscal compact (austerity treaty) referendum and now taking a stand against water privatisation. They don’t take much crap do they! and Neither should we.