One of the worst ever illegal dumping cases in the county has been highlighted at the monthly council meeting with the Chief Executive, John Mulholland himself publically pledging that it will be tackled.
The matter was raised by Cllr Caroline Dwane-Stanley in the context of the ongoing plans for the regeneration of the O’ Moore Place area.
She painted a picture of illegal dumping at a private house in the vicinity of O’ Moore Place and Lakeglen which shocked the meeting. It has been going on since last July and still remained unresolved.
The local residents she said might as well be living in Kyletaleesha dump such was the scale of the refuse piling up.
“It’s out on the public roadway. This would not be tolerated anywhere else in the county. Families are desperate to have something done.
“The wholesale dumping has now led to rat infestation. The vast majority of residents maintain their homes properly and this is down to the actions of a very small few,” said Cllr Dwane-Stanley. She appealed to the Chief Executive to come good on his promise to her to deal with the problem.
The meeting heard that the house in question was private property and that the owner is dead and that the mortgage is with a vulture fund, according to Cllr Dwane.
“This is a public health hazard for the decent families and the children living in this community. It’s disgraceful. We cannot wait until some vulture fund decide to go in and do something.
“The Council must do something and levy the property with the cost if necessary. The Environmental section need to step up to the mark,” she insisted.
The Chief Executive John Mullholland didn’t hesitate for a second to assure Cllr Dwane that he would be good to his word. “This is an intolerable situation and we will deal with it as a matter of urgency,” he pledged.
Cllr Dwane commended the housing section and Mr Michael Rainey’s team for the progress they continue to make on the provision of housing in town and the regeneration of areas like O’ Moore Place.
A number of existing houses which overlook the neighbouring field are due for demolition, 6 houses in all and this is also to address anti-social behaviour.
Thirty six new housing units will then be built in the vicinity and the owner of the site has confirmed the preferred architect and builder for the development. Detailed designs are awaited and a funding application has also been made to the Urban Regeneration and Development Fund to support improvement works within the existing estate.
Cllr Pauline Madigan said that she recently visited O’ Moore Place and received a lovely welcome and had a great chat with some of the residents who kept their homes impeccably.
However, confirming the previous accounts she said that in other parts of the estate “you could smell the rats in the rubbish.”
Confusing ‘green’ bins
In a related matter on the question of refuse and rubbish, Cllr Catherine Fitzgerald raised the issue of the colour of waste bins. She called on the relevant Environment Minister, Richard Bruton to bring in legislation to regulate the colour of waste bins to ensure that the same waste goes into the same colour bins nationwide.
“I’m talking about people who are trying to be responsible and do the right thing. We hear them promoting the ‘green’ recyclable bin but my ‘green’ coloured bin is my waste bin. The policy and messaging is confusing and there needs to be consistency across the country, all the same colours with the same separation of refuse.” Cllr Pashcal McEvoy seconded her proposal.
Meanwhile the council continues to recycle hundreds of thousands of tonnes of bottles and cans at their bottle bank facilities. Last year they also issued 119 notices of litter fines and commenced legal proceedings against 18 individuals and secured 10 court convictions for illegal dumping.
Additionally 75 notices were issued last year in relation to abandoned cars as the local authority continues to clean up and combat dozens of illegal dumping black spots.
In 2018 the Council received 967 complaints about littering, illegal dumping and burning. A further 82 such complaints have been logged this year already.