2015 is the year to build on this
“This year unemployment dropped by 12.94% in Co. Cork, €41,334,281.63 went towards capital spend for schools in the county and more than 49 Garda cars came on stream the area” says Noel Harrington, Fine Gael TD for Cork South West.
“There is no doubt that 2014 has been a challenging year for the people of West Cork. We have been coming out of the most difficult recession in the history of the State and this does not happen overnight. Major progress has been made however, and the same can be expected for 2015.
“More people are working in West Cork and this Government is determined to continue to create jobs in all regions of the country in the coming year. Supports for SMEs are in place, work is continually underway to attract foreign direct investment and we are learning to maximise Ireland’s potential as a tourist destination.
“In 2014 1,228,000 tourist visitors brought €433m to Co. Cork. In the budget we protected the lower VAT rate for the tourism sector and we have set out a target of attracting 7.74 million visitors to Ireland next year, a rise of 6% which will create 8,000 new jobs.
Fine Gael Cork South West TD, Noel Harrington, has today (Wednesday) welcomed the news that funding for community development offices on non-Gaeltacht islands is secure for the future. Deputy Harrington was speaking after a positive conclusion to discussions on the funding of non- Gaeltacht islands between the Department of An Gaeltacht and the Department of the Environment, Community and Local Government.
“There is good news for the West Cork islands with confirmation that funding for their community development offices is secure. Minister for the Gaeltacht, Joe McHugh, has confirmed that funding for non- Gaeltacht islands will continue to the end of March 2015 and that in the meantime, both his Department and the Department of Environment will examine ways of supporting the continuation of these vital island structures and services.
“Having brought Minister McHugh to visit both Sherkin and Bere Islands, I know he has a full appreciation of the challenges faced by island communities. He understands the importance of securing the funding for the community development offices there.
“It is great to hear confirmation that both the Departments of Environment and Gaeltacht are working together to ensure that the services they provide are retained and supported.
“All in all it has been a good year for the islands, as this announcement comes on top of news we received in summer that a top up payment for island farmers under the Areas of Natural Constraint (ANC) scheme, is being included in the Rural Development Programme.
“Island communities face very specific challenges and it is crucial that the Government continues to appreciate that and support them in this way.”
Today, the Minister for Defence, Mr. Simon Coveney, T.D., as Chair of the Government Task Force on Emergency Planning, and the Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport, Mr. Paschal Donohoe T.D., and the Minister of State at the Department of the Environment, Community and Local Government, Mr. Paudie Coffey T.D., jointly launched the Government’s ‘Be Winter-Ready’ 2014-2015 Information Campaign at the National Emergency Coordination Centre in Dublin. Also in attendance were representatives from the various Departments and Agencies tasked with emergency planning and response. The launch coincided with a meeting of the Government Task Force on Emergency Planning, chaired by Minister Coveney, which dealt with winter-preparedness issues.
Through a dedicated website www.winterready.ie, advice is being made available from a number of sources including Government Departments and Agencies, An Garda Síochána, the Health Service Executive, the Office of Public Works, Local Authorities and the transport providers. The advice has been categorised under various headings including: the Home, Road Safety, Schools, the Farming Community and the Business Sector. A synopsis of the information available has been compiled into a redesigned “Be Winter Ready” booklet, which can be downloaded from the website.
The main objectives of the ‘Be Winter-Ready’ information campaign are:
- To provide practical advice on how best to prepare for the coming winter.
- To ensure the public are aware of where advice and help can be found, if needed, and
- To reassure the public that preparations are being made and arrangements have been put in place to ensure that there will be a coordinated response to severe weather events.
Fine Gael TD for Cork South West,, Noel Harrington, has said that a drop of 11.2% in unemployment figures for Co. Cork is a clear indication that the economic recovery is well underway.
“This week we learned that the national live register rate has dropped to 11%, the lowest since 2009. This is extremely good news for the country as a whole but I am particularly pleased to see that the number of people out of work in Co. Cork has dropped.
“In October 2013 38,449 people in Co. Cork were on the live register and this October that number has dropped to 34,151. This is a reduction of 11.2%. There is no doubt that this figure remains far too high but it is very encouraging to see that things are moving in the right direction.
“This Government has been given the task of getting this country back on its feet. These figures show that the economic recovery is real and that it is resulting in people getting back to work. Over 70,000 jobs have been created since the launch of the Action Plan for Jobs in 2012 and we are on track to meet our target of creating 100,000 jobs by 2016.
“This week alone 1,200 jobs were announced in Ireland; these are real jobs and this figure does not include the small, indigenous Irish businesses that took on new employees in the last seven days.