Dé Domhnaigh, Márta 22, 2009

éirígí call for public report from council over St Patricks Day junkets
éirígí are calling on both Donegal County Council and Letterkenny Town Council to compile and publish detailed reports relating to the costs incurred by the taxpayer and the benefits supposedly obtained from the recent St Patricks day junkets abroad by Councillors and Council officials from both local authorities.

Tir Chonaill éirígí spokesperson Micheál Cholm MacGiolla Easbuig said: “This year, Councillors and Council officials headed abroad once again to celebrate St Patricks Day. Both Donegal County Council and Letterkenny Town Council sent delegations. Donegal County Council sent two councillors and their Director of Corporate Services while Letterkenny Town Council sent three councillors and the Town Engineer to represent them in the US.”

He added: “As the recession worsens and cutbacks are being made in esential services such as health and education, the county council themselves have also announced their own cutbacks including job lay-offs. Yet while they are letting workers go and services are being affected due to supposed lack of finance, they apparently have no difficulty in finding the finance to fund these trips abroad.”

He added: “I am now calling on the both Donegal County and Letterkenny Town councils to both compile and to publish a detailed report into the latest St Patricks Day junkets. The public need to be made aware of the cost of these trips to the taxpayer and see a detailed breakdown of what was spent by each individual and for what purpose. Before they travelled, what did the officials and the politicians hope to achieve on their trip and what now have they actually achieved? They need to tell us who they held meetings with and provide detail of the discussions that took place? Have they secured new employment or have they secured any benefits whatsoever for this region or the country as a whole?”

He concluded: “If they have nothing to hide and indeed secured jobs or other benefits for the country and for this region then they will produce and publish this report without delay. If on the other hand they refuse to do so, then the question needs to be asked – what are they hiding and what exactly are they spending the hard earned tax payers money on?”

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