It was another very busy Dáil and constituency week. On Monday I held my information clinics in Darndale and Donnycarney and met with constituents on a wide number of issues.
On Tuesday I attended the meeting of the Budgetary Oversight Committee which was questioning the Minister for Finance and Public Expenditure and Reform, Paschal Donohoe, about Budget 2020 which I characterised as another austerity budget. I then had a Parliamentary Question with the Tánaiste and Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade, Simon Coveney, on Irish recognition of the Armenian genocide of 1915-1917. Later on Tuesday I also raised a Topical Issues Debate with the Minister for Education and Skills about increased staff for Our Lady Immaculate SNS Darndale and about building and upgrades for St. Laurence’s NS, Baldoyle.
On Wednesday morning I asked the Minister for Finance about job losses in our pillar banks during oral Parliamentary Questions. That afternoon I raised the importance #Justice4Dara campaign with the Taoiseach, Leo Varadkar, during Leaders’ Questions. Dara’s mother, Aileen, is a constituent and I have met with her a number of times on her fight for justice and answers around the circumstances leading up to Dara’s untimely death. I called for the Garda Commissioner to meet with Aileen and for the completed GSOC report to be shared with Dara’s family and the family solicitor. During Questions on Promised Legislation, I asked the Taoiseach about the judgement by Ms Justice Úna Ní Raifeartaigh recently where she struck down Section 44(10) of the Road Traffic Act 2010, amended by the Road Traffic Act 2016 which was brought in by the Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport, Deputy Ross.
On Thursday morning I asked the Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform about cost savings under the National Shared Services Office. We also delivered my submission on new high-density apartments at Parkside Boulevard in Clongriffin to An Bord Pleanála. I was very disappointed to hear that the ill-conceived Clonshaugh Water Sewage Treatment plant received the go-ahead from An Bord Pleanála, despite strong objections from myself and residents at the Oral Hearing which I requested and despite the importance of protecting the UNESCO-designated Dublin Bay Biosphere. I attended the protest outside the Dáil by people calling for the reversal of the decision to close the Cuisle holiday resort in Roscommon and I listened to their concerns. This morning I attended the funeral of Mr Eddie O’Shaughnessy, a very distinguished resident of Bonnybrook Parish, whose outstanding family has contributed so much to the life of the Coolock district.
I am continuing work on my final 2019 newsletter and am looking forward to bringing an important Motion on the Right to Personal Assistance Services with Deputy Thomas Pringle before the Dáil next Tuesday.