The Cathaoirleach of Sligo County Council says a solution has to be found to the Connaughton road issue.
The Council has confirmed that at least €7000 has already been spent on replacing a barrier at the carpark which has been removed illegally for the third time this week.
Meanwhile, the travellers living in the carpark say they are not living there by choice but because they have nowhere else to go.
The barrier at the Connaughton road carpark which is a public carpark but is also the home of the extended McGinley family for well over 30 years now – has been removed 3 times in the last 6 months.
The Council says it’s a public carpark and the barrier should remain in place while the family living there say it’s a health and safety issue for their family in the event of a fire or other emergency situation.
The barrier was removed again this week after the Council erected it in December surrounded by Gardai with riot gear who they had called in while the work was being carried out.
But it is the taxpayer that is footing the bill for the failure of a resolution in this lengthy dispute.
Taking the barrier issue alone, the Council has confirmed that “it was first re-erected circa 5th July at a cost of €2k (ex. VAT) – Installation only costs as the original barrier was available for use.
It was unlawfully removed at the end of August and once again re-erected by the Council on 13th December last. The costs on this occasion were €2,750 (ex. VAT) for the new pivot barrier and approx. €2k (ex. VAT) installation costs.”
It’s been removed again this week and the Council says it will put it up again
Cathaoirleach of the Council, FF Cllr Seamus Kilgannon says a solution has to be found on this issue:
Members of the traveller community living in the Connaughton road carpark state that the Council has never offered them suitable alternative accommodation and a site they had expressed interest in has not been made available to them.