Local authorities must learn from the enormous mistakes made in recent years in planning and house building, according to IFA presidential candidate, John Bryan.
Addressing the Local Authority Members’ Association conference in Limerick, John Bryan said the decisions to establish large scale housing developments in towns and villages where demand never existed exemplified the madness in the construction bubble. At the same time, many local authorities were refusing to allow family members build a home on the family farm.
Speaking to 250 elected members of local authorities at the Limerick conference, John Bryan also said that he was very concerned about the additional powers being given to the Minister for the Environment over local planning in new legislation that is now being framed.
“The current Minister for the Environment, John Gormley, is distinctly anti rural Ireland and has no appreciation of the role of the family farm in maintaining vibrant rural communities. Farmers and those representing them on local authorities have reason to be worried about his extreme green agenda,” said John Bryan.
He called on elected local representatives to join with the IFA in lobbying Ministers and members of the Oireachtas to ensure that the cutbacks in REPS and other schemes are reversed.
“The cutbacks will cost the rural economy more than double the actual savings and will result in more than 20,000 job losses in rural areas. Councillors elected by members of the farming community must ensure that the government is fully aware of the impact of its decisions,” he said.