Popular Sallins Councillor Carmel Kelly launched her re-election bid this evening in Café Grange in Sallins.
Carmel has been a Councillor in 2016, and during that time was one of the Founders of the Midsummer Arts Festival which is taking place again this year.
An impressive crowd gathered for the launch with several TDs and Senators travelling for the occasion. Among the speakers were Anne Rabbitte TD, Brendan Smith TD, James Lawless TD, Frank O’Rourke TD and her fellow candidates Brian Larkin and Terry Dignan,
Carmel said in her address that her sole ambition in being returned to the Council was to serve the people to the utmost of her ability and that she was a passionate believer in the power of Community.
Frank O’Rourke TD has said that the crippling cost of business insurance is leading to closures of nightclubs, marts, leisure and childcare facilities across the country.
Deputy O’Rourke was commenting following reports of business insurance and public liability costs increasing by up to eight fold.
Deputy O’Rourke explained, “Having spoken to businesses and Kildare Chamber of Commerce, I am aware that insurance premiums for some owners have increased by a multiple of eight. That is completely unacceptable and is not sustainable. “SMEs, who bear the brunt of these increases, make such a contribution to their local economies but the increase in insurance coupled with other increases which they have encountered over recent years, is proving too much for many and they are considering closing. “
“To add insult to injury, we recently learned that three of the country’s main insurance companies made a combined profit of almost €200m in 2018. They are raking it in by imposing huge premiums on consumers for their home, motor and business insurance. “While I accept that the personal injury awards are far too high in Ireland and that they are a key contributor to the rising insurance costs, I do not accept insurance companies not passing on some of their profits to their customers. “
“The reason the situation is out of control is due to the lack of delivery by the Government, they have not implemented the recommendations of the Cost of Insurance Working Group. The long promised Judicial Council which will set limits for claims is nowhere to be seen and the national claims database and a dedicated Garda insurance fraud unit is yet to be set up. “
“The Fianna Fáil Party recently put forward a motion calling on the Government to take a number of steps to address rising insurance costs – I believe it is high time this Government takes our steps seriously. This needs to stop before we see the closure of more businesses and further job losses”, concluded Deputy O’Rourke.
Celbridge Burst Water Mains raised by O’Rourke Local Fianna Fail TD, Frank O’Rourke, has met with Irish Water to raise the issues surrounding the water main which burst again in Celbridge in January.
“The 12 inch water main burst in Celbridge in January. This water main services many homes and businesses in Celbridge. When it burst, it caused major disruption to residents, businesses, nursing homes, schools etc. I met with Irish Water in the Dail last week to highlight the disruption caused, and to see what action was being taken by Irish Water to address the problems.”
“Irish Water acknowledges the difficulties caused, and have given me a commitment that they are going to carry out an inspection to check the integrity of the 700m long pipe, which will include the bedding along the water main. They have committed to putting a plan in place to replace this section of water main, if that is what is required after they complete the inspection and survey which I have requested.”
“This is a very positive outcome. Irish Water will be engaging with me to update me on this project, once they have all the information collated. I also received a commitment from Irish Water that they will engage with Kildare Co Co to ensure that should such a water main burst again, that the response will be more responsive and plans would be put in place to have a round the clock response. I will continue to raise the issue with Kildare Co Co and Irish Water to ensure that they address the underlying issue around water supply for Celbridge.” Concluded Deputy O’Rourke.
Frank O’Rourke TD has welcomed the announcement that a footpath and cycle track will be provided on the Moyglare Road in Maynooth.
Frank commented, “I have made representations, on behalf of the residents on the Moyglare Road, to have a footpath and a cycle track provided on the Moyglare Road. Given the growth in residential properties and the new secondary schools coming on stream together with the existing houses and GAA Club this is an important piece of infrastructure. This work is planned to be completed by September/October of this year.We must continue to provide adequate footpaths to encourage people to walk and cycle.”
Frank O’Rourke has said insurance providers need to pass on some of their massive profits to consumers and called on the Government to immediately implement the recommendations of the Cost of Insurance Working Group.
Deputy O’Rourke was commenting following reports that three insurance companies in Ireland made a combined profit of €200 million last year and said, “Insurance companies are raking it in by imposing huge premiums on consumers for their home, motor and business insurance. Individuals across Kildare cannot keep up with rising motor and home insurance costs and businesses such as nightclubs, marts and childcare facilities are considering closing down because of the massive increases in public liability and business insurance.”
“While I accept that the personal injury awards are far too high in Ireland and that they are a key contributor to the rising insurance costs, I do not accept insurance companies not passing on some of their profits to their customers – that just makes good business sense. Insurance premiums continue to rise far in excess of what is fair or justified. These rising costs are a huge burden on customers, business, charities, and sports clubs. It is very important that the recommendations of the working group, formed to tackle rising insurance costs, are implemented immediately. So far it appears little has been done in this regard.”
“The establishment of a national claims database is just one step we can take. The legislation for this database was enacted some time ago, yet it languishes in the Department. In addition to the database the establishment of a dedicated Garda insurance fraud unit is one action which is often brought up by businesses and communities as an essential measure.” The Department must do more to prevent rising insurance costs. There are options on the table but little has been done to date while premiums continue to rise. The Minister ought to take this matter more seriously and step up efforts before we see the closure of more businesses and homeowners taking risks with their homes”, concluded Deputy O’Rourke.