Tipperary county councillors have demanded that the county gets a fair share of the new housing units to come on stream as a result of the new housing initiative announced by the Department of the Environment.
After listening to a presentation on the Social Housing Strategy 2020, Sinn Fein members said the initiative was only announced following the death of Jonathan Corrie near Dail Eireann.
Director of Services Clare Curley, who outlined the plan to the members, told the meeting that all of the housing officers around the country attended a meeting in Dublin to be informed of the iniative prior to that tragic death.
Members told the meeting that they wanted to see the authority get a fair share of the new housing units earmarked when the overall figure was being divided up.
Cllr. Tom Wood said the whole allocation could easily be eaten up in the Dublin area alone.
There would be vast demands on what was available and Tipperary had to make sure as many housing units as possible was secured.
“We should be in a position to start immediately,” insisted Cllr. Wood.
Cllr. Richie Molloy said there was a huge demand for housing in Tipperary .
“The situation is reaching a crisis point and more and more people are unable to meet their rent payments and are forced to borrow from family and friends.” he said.
Cllr. Pat English said the housing list had increased by 86% in the last ten years.
Cllr David Dunne said the Jonathan Corrie tragedy brought this crisis out into the public domanin.
“The government is acting too late but it’s better late than never”, he said.
“I don’t agree that it’s too late” responsed council chairman Michael Fitzgerald.
Sinn Fein’s Martin Browne said - “The move is to be appreciated but it is a knee jerk to the death of Jonathan Corrie.
“When will we know how many units Tipperary will get”.
Clare Curley told the meeting that they would do everything to get the best allocation possible for Tipperary.
A strong application would be made with regard to the need in each area.
“We are going for the highest allocation we can” she told the members.
They were not able to proceed immediately in some areas but in a lot of cases land had been mapped out.
Land had to be matched with the need in a particular area and the design process had to be gone through, she added.