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In Pictures: Laois County Council’s trip to New York City for St Patrick’s weekend

Laois County Council have published an account of a visit to New York by Council representatives as part of the St Patrick’s weekend celebrations in the USA.

The delegation of Ms Angela McEvoy, Director of Services, and Ms Evelyn Reddin, Head of Enterprise were in New York City from Friday, March 15 to Tuesday, March 19.

On Friday, the delegation attended meetings with Enterprise Ireland, which offered an opportunity for ongoing engagement between the Local Enterprise Office, the Regional Enterprise Officer and Enterprise Ireland (USA).

The meeting was seen as a means supporting the efforts of Laois based businesses to expand into the USA and develop links for businesses looking to break into US Markets.

Later that evening, the delegation attended a dinner hosted by the president of the Laois New York Association, Mr Mike Dunphy.

Saturday began with members of the County Laois Association and the delegation attended Mass in St Patrick’s Cathedral.

Following mass, the delegation marched in the Parade along
5th Avenue with families connected to and from Mountmellick, Ballinakill, Killenard, Portarlington and Ballyroan.

On St Patrick’s Day, Ms McEvoy and Ms Reddin met with Ms Pauline Turley, Vice Chairperson of the Irish Arts Centre, New York.

They discussed opportunities within the Arts sector and how relationships could be fostered between the two agencies, highlighting Laois Arts House in Stradbally, Dunamaise Arts Centre, and the School of Music.

On Monday, the delegation met with representatives of the Industrial Development Agency to discuss the potential for overseas investment into County Laois.

Ms McEvoy welcomed the opportunity for the meeting and acknowledged the acquisition by the IDA of lands on Mountrath Road and requested an update on the intentions of the IDA regarding the lands noting that a masterplan was discussed at previous meetings.

An update on developments at Junction 17 National Enterprise Park was provided with Ms Reddin emphasising the capacity of County Laois to support inward investment.

The IDA indicated that their preference is to masterplan the site and provide the services to enable investors to develop individual sites to their own requirements.

This was followed by a meeting with Mr Tony Dunne of Bank of Ireland, and Ms Tania Sheikh, NYC Hub Coordinator with Bank of Ireland in Manhattan.

During this meeting, the Connected Hubs in the Midlands region were outlined, including Portlaoise Enterprise Centre, Vision 85 and The Cube, all in Portlaoise; Bloom HQ in Mountrath; Portarlington Enterprise Centre; and the Beale Centre, Mountmellick.

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