Friday, 20 October 2017

A World Class Sports Campus Is Possible for North Wicklow

Wicklow Sinn Féin TD John Brady has said that he believes the construction of a world class sports complex in North Wicklow is absolutely possible if the will exists to make it happen.

Teachta Brady said:
“Over the summer months I have engaged with numerous sports and athletics groups across the North Wicklow area who are all convinced that the construction of a sports campus on the planned Fassaroe development site would contribute enormously to the local community and would serve to help shore up the already startling success of the many sports and athletic groups in the area. Numerous groups such as Ardmore rovers Football club, Enniskerry Boxing Club, Liberty Boxing Club, Shamrock Bhoys and the Bray runners group for example are restricted in activity potential due to a serious lack of facilities. A multi-use sports campus in the area would also unlock the potential for programmes across the county to help encourage people into the area of sports and away from sedentary activities.”

Teachta Brady also said that the Cosgrave Property Group has lodged a planning application with Wicklow County Council for a 658-unit housing development in Fassaroe, this application is currently with An Bord Pleanála. The 48-hectare development between Bray and Enniskerry also includes substantial office and retail space as well as a district park and inland waterway. The scheme forms part of the council’s master plan for the Fassaroe area, which was drawn up in 2010 but later mothballed on account of the financial crisis. There is also provision for 49 acres for amenity space. When complete, the plan will provide up to 1,800 residential units.

“In August I met officials in Wicklow County Council to discuss to feasibility of a sports campus on this site, subsequently I submitted detailed proposals for such a campus to Wicklow County Council’s Bray Local Area Plan for Bray in order to secure zoning that would allow for a campus to be included. I believe that the Development Contribution Scheme Levies which apply in the context of the overall development of the Fassaroe site could be used to fund planning and to develop a world class sports campus.“

“Of course we need buy-in from all potential stakeholders including local representatives so I am pleased to note that Fianna Fail have very recently become a supporter of the initiative. On this particular issue I would call on all local politicians to join me in doing our utmost to push this idea forward.”

Teachta Brady concluded by pointing out the long term health and social benefits that such initiatives can deliver:

“Experience has shown us that a sprawling Suburbia with little leisure and sporting infrastructure is detrimental to the overall health and general well -being of people and their communities. The benefit of this hindsight and the opportunities presented in the current Fassaroe area plans suggest that if the will is there the possibilities are endless. The Sinn Fein team of councillors and I will continue to engage with all stakeholders including the wider community, Wicklow County Council, local sports and athletics groups and local representatives. We truly believe that a World Class Sports Campus in North Wicklow can be delivered if all groups work together for the common good.”

Wednesday, 11 October 2017

Purchase of former Ulster Bank building in Wicklow Town a welcome first step in rejuvenating the County Town

Wicklow Sinn Féin TD John Brady has welcomed the purchase of the former Ulster Bank building in Wicklow town by Wicklow County Council. This building will be converted into a new library for the town, to replace the existing library at the rear of the Courthouse.

Speaking after the news Teachta Brady said “The purchase of the former Ulster Bank building in Wicklow Town by the council is positive news for the town; it will be converted into a new modern library providing ICT facilities. This is something that I had pushed as a priority with the council over the last number of years. The new library will also to help increase badly needed footfall on the Main Street.”

Teachta Brady continued “The purchase of the Ulster Bank building must be seen as a first step in the enhancing and bringing new life back onto the streets of Wicklow Town. The council must also utilise the now empty former Wicklow Town Council building in the Market Square. I have recently met with the new Chief Executive of Wicklow County Council Frank Curran and put forward plans to have Wicklow Municipal District relocated from County Buildings to the derelict Town Council building.”

“I have also been working towards the refurbishment and reopening of Wicklow Court House which has been closed since 2010. The purchase of Ulster Bank building is a welcome first step in rejuvenating Wicklow Town, the council now needs to push forward other measures to help revitalise the County Town.”

Tuesday, 10 October 2017

Government prioritise tax cuts over tackling housing and health crises - Brady

Sinn Féin TD for Wicklow/East Carlow John Brady has said the government’s decision to allocate such a huge proportion of available resources on tax cuts shows that it does not understand the reality on the ground for ordinary families.
Teachta Brady said:

“The Government know that it is possible to balance the books while at the same time beginning the process of sorting the crises in our health and housing sectors through meaningful investment. Sinn Féin’s alternative budget demonstrates exactly that.

“Every cent that the Government have put into tax cuts is money that could have been used to rebuild our health services and to build homes.

“Budget 2018 has underfunded the health service in order prioritise tax cuts. Today, the Minister of Finance announced €685 million for the Health Service in Budget 2018. Yet, the Health Service actually needs an increase of €691million next year simply to stand still.

“At the height of a crisis with nearly 700,000 people on hospital waiting lists and over 514 people on trolleys today alone, these measures in Budget 2018 for the Health Service will exasperate the crisis.

“When it comes to housing, despite making over 52 ‘policy’ announcements since his appointment, Minister for Housing Eoghan Murphy has not delivered any additional housing units above those already committed to by his predecessor Simon Coveney.

“Despite there being between 90,000 and 180,000 vacant homes across the state, Budget 2018 has delivered nothing to increase access to these much needed houses. The Repair and Lease scheme budget has not been increased. There is no increase in Buy and Renew Budget. Crucially, there is no vacant homes tax.

“The Budget’s biggest failing is the lack of any measures to provide any affordable rental or purchase housing. The government has no target for delivering affordable housing. The Local Infrastructure Housing Activation Fund is down. There is no guarantee that the Home Building Finance Ireland will deliver any homes in 2018, let alone affordable homes.

“Fianna Fáil has spent the past year criticising Fine Gael’s housing and health policies. They had the power to influence this budget and failed to exert any effect on the government’s ongoing failing housing and health policies

Wednesday, 20 September 2017

Minister Doherty ‘alarmingly clueless’ on what is happening in JobPath - John Brady TD

Sinn Féin spokesperson for Social Protection John Brady TD has said Minister Regina Doherty is ‘alarmingly clueless’ on JobPath and clearly has no idea what is going on within the scheme.

Speaking during Priority Questions with Minister Doherty this afternoon, Teachta Brady said:

“Today, I raised a number of issues around JobPath and the fact that they have gone beyond what they were initially set up to do.

“JobPath was set up to engage with the long term unemployed and assist them in returning to work. Instead, JobPath is hounding people who are either recently unemployed or are engaged in part-time work and are not unemployed at all.

“Minister Doherty has refuted these claims and insisted that JobPath is only engaging the long term unemployed and anything beyond that would be in breach of their contract with the Department of Social Protection.

“Over the past three months, I have conducted a JobPath Exposed campaign with a ‘Tell Your Story’ element listening to the actual reality on the ground from those who know it best – the participants.

“Through this process, I have ample evidence of people who are only unemployed for a number of weeks or days in some cases, teachers who are subbing, people who have just left college being 'invited' to engage with JobPath. These people are not long term unemployed.

“In the case of teachers who are subbing, they are not unemployed. Some people are in part-time work and this suits them as they can work around raising children, again they are not unemployed yet JobPath is hounding them.

“It is beyond alarming that Minister Doherty has absolutely no idea what Turas Nua and Seetec, who are delivering JobPath are doing. I will be publishing my report on JobPath next week and I expect urgent action to be taken on these private companies.”

Brady gives cautious welcome to Greystones' designation as a rent pressure zone

Sinn Féin Wicklow TD John Brady has given a cautious welcome to the news that Greystones has been designated as a rent pressure zone.

Teachta Brady said;

“While I welcome Greystones' designation as a rent pressure zone, it is clear that the Residential Tenancy Board should be given additional powers and resources to ensure that the designation is being adhered to.

"I have been calling on the Government for months to include Greystones as a rent pressure zone given the rising cost of rents. Minister Murphy rightly says that this is being done in response to exceptional rent increases in Greystones. These rent increases have been as a result of the Government's failure to take steps to address the rent crisis.

“Sinn Féin firmly believes that linking rents to an index such as the Consumer Price Index is one measure that should be adopted.

“We have tabled numerous Bills and amendments calling for the introduction of real rent certainty along these lines. Unfortunately, both Fine Gael and Fianna Fáil have failed to support these measures.

“Tenants also need greater security of tenure. Minister for Housing Eoghan Murphy must reconsider the government’s opposition to a Focus Ireland amendment to the Residential Tenancies Act. This measure would prevent buy-to-let landlords, who took advantage of generous tax breaks when purchasing their properties, from issuing vacant possession notice to families when they want to sell the property. This measure alone would prevent more families from going homeless and would keep properties on the rental market.”

Monday, 18 September 2017

Commencement of development at Avondale Heights, Rathdrum ‘a step in the right direction’ - Brady

Sinn Féin TD for Wicklow John Brady has welcomed the commencement of works for the development of homes at Avondale Heights in Rathdrum as ‘a step in the right direction’ at long last.

Speaking following the ‘sod turning’ event this morning, Teachta Brady said:

“I was delighted to attend the sod turning event at Avondale Heights this morning marking the commencement of works for the delivery of badly needed housing in Wicklow.

“There will be 20 units in this the first phase, taking 52 weeks to construct. Overall, there will be 47 units in the development when complete.

“Department of Housing red tape has been rightly criticised for slowing down social housing delivery and this development at Avondale Heights has certainly not been brought about before time.

“We are experiencing a housing crisis that many of us have never witnessed before; this crisis will not be tackled without the building of adequate housing for people who need it.

“I want to commend the staff in the housing section in Wicklow County Council who have worked hard to progress this scheme.

“Today marks a step in the right direction however, it is just that. It is one step but we have a long way to go and many more developments such as Avondale Heights must follow.”

Friday, 25 August 2017

Brady calls on Minister Harris to act following second public meeting for a GP Out-of-Hours Service for North Wicklow

Brady calls on Minister Harris to act following second public meeting for a GP Out-of-Hours Service for North Wicklow

Sinn Féin TD for Wicklow John Brady has called on Minister Harris to honour his commitment to the people of North Wicklow and establish a GP Out-of-Hours Service.

The public meeting was held on Thursday evening in Greystones and heard from Sinn Féin spokesperson for Health Louise O’Reilly TD and Sinn Féin Councillor for the Greystones Municipal District Nicola Lawless.

Speaking following the meeting, Teachta Brady said:

“The people of North Wicklow are sending a clear message to Minister Harris, they want him to honour the commitment he made to them regarding a GP Out-of-Hours Service which was promised to be up and running six months ago.

“It is not good enough for Minister Harris to simply say the funds are not available from the HSE. This excuse does not wash with the people here.

“When we look around at the current state of the hospital crisis, it is more important than ever that people can access health services locally in their communities. If we want to tackle overcrowding in our A&Es and hospitals, there has to be adequate access to care in communities first and foremost.

Cllr Nicola Lawless concluded:

“We have now had two successful public meetings in both Bray and Greystones, our campaign for this service will continue until the Minister acts on his promise. I would urge people to continue to sign and share our online petition which is available at ”