Sligo TD says it could be time to reconsider decentralisation

A Fianna Fail TD in Sligo Leitrim says the government should look again at decentralisation.

This week, there’s been a significant boost of confidence for the jobs sector in the Sligo Leitrim region with confirmation that the old MBNA headquarters has been acquired by the Digital Office Centre Group.

The group have bought the Carrick Business Campus which is divided into a larger office space suitable for a bigger company with up to 400 employees as well as smaller units for companies of up to 100 staff.

MBNA announced hundreds of jobs losses there in 2011 before closing the centre completely in 2014 which was a huge blow for the whole wider midlands and north west region.

The purchase has led to comments by Fianna Fail TD Eamon Scanlon today that in light of moves like this it could be time the government looked at the controversial issue of decentralisation again.

Set up in 2003 by Fianna Fail’s Charlie McCreevy, the programme was axed by the then-Minister for Public Expenditure Brendan Howlin in 2011 meaning 40 projects around the country including two in Sligo and Leitrim never went ahead.

Deputy Scanlon who is the party’s spokesperson on jobs and employment says the north west has a quality of life that people envy and decentralisation should be considered again:

His comments may come somewhat out of the blue but in fact the interest in the region was confirmed by the Connolly Motor Group after they announced last week they are to create 20 new jobs in September by opening a new car dealership in Collooney.

Neil Connolly told Ocean FM that before even launching their recruitment drive they have received CVs from the east of the country and abroad with people interested in moving back to the north west:

Following recent jobs losses like those last week at the McCormack’s group of garages, there are ongoing calls for more efforts to be made to support exisiting companies and attract new ones to the region and if marketed correctly the old MBNA headquarters could be the start of something positive for the region.