Furious Backpeddling on Kellystown

Friday, September 12, 2008

In recent weeks a leaflet has been circulated by the Labour Party (Joan Burton TD and Cllr Michael O’Donovan, the Mayor of Fingal) regarding Kellystown. This leaflet is very misleading. In the leaflet, it is claimed that ‘in response to a question from Michael O’Donovan, the County Manager gave an explicit commitment that no houses would be built until the primary and post-primary schools were open’. In fact, a legally binding condition (Objective KN9) was written into the Kellystown Variation from day one and was at the core of the proposal, a proposal which Mayor O’Donovan ultimately voted against ! This would have been well known to Mayor O’Donovan and indeed anyone who read the documents or attended any of the local public meetings.

It is also stated that the ‘The Labour Party tabled a number of important amendments so that any Kellystown development could only go ahead when new public transport facilities were in place. These amendments were voted down by Fianna Fail and Fine Gael.’ Again this is very misleading. Indeed, two of the six Labour councillors* did not vote for the motion to which the leaflet refers. Rather, it was agreed that the Local Area Plan (LAP) would include ‘a programme for the phasing of construction of residential and commercial development in tandem with the delivery of transport, recreational, community and education infrastructure’ (Objective KN7). Moreover, Cllr Hamill (Labour) withdrew her motion calling for Metro West and Porterstown Train Station to be in place in advance of any development (Motion 16)* and a motion on bus services for the new development (Motion 19) was actually ruled out of order by the Mayor Michael O’Donovan* who also ruled out of order a motion calling for the school sites to be acquired by compulsory purchase order (Motion 2)*

Kellystown was a very divisive issue for our community. On balance, I decided that it was a good deal for the community. I fully respect that others do not share that view but do not think that any of us should respect politicians who misrepresent the facts and try to claim credit for something they actually opposed.

* Don’t know who to believe? You can watch the meeting on-line at http://www.fingalcoco.public-i.tv/site/. Of particular interest, Labour Mayor, Cllr Michael O’Donovan rules out of order a motion calling for a CPO on the school sites (1hr28), a motion on bus services for the new development (1hr29) and confirms the withdrawal of Cllr Hamill’s motion linking the development to Metro West (1hr34). Labour Councillors Kelleher and Maguire abstain on the ‘Labour transport motions’ (2hr29)

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