Seanad debates

Wednesday, 23 March 2005

Water and Sewerage Schemes.


7:00 pm

Photo of Paul CoghlanPaul Coghlan (Fine Gael)

I too am grateful to the Cathaoirleach for including this matter on the Adjournment. It is a matter of vital interest to the people of Rathmore which is a key gateway to the kingdom of Kerry. Last week I attended a meeting of the community council. People are very agitated regarding the Firies-Scartaglen southern section B new water project.

Before proceeding, I welcome the Minister of State, Deputy Batt O'Keeffe, to the House. He is very familiar with this gateway as he hails from a little further east in Cork. I hesitate to mention gateways because of the spatial strategy and other places that have been nominated as gateways. Rathmore is a very important gateway to the kingdom of Kerry from the eastern side. The Minister of State will be very familiar with the area.

In the matter of the Rathmore domestic water supply, the Minister of State will be aware that demand exceeds supply by approximately 25,000 gallons per day. As a result of this problem the water in the reservoir drops and Rathmore users have little or no water pressure for domestic use. The county council solution has been to cut off the water at night to allow the reservoir to fill up overnight. Unfortunately for some people who have to go to work early, they must leave without having water to boil a kettle for breakfast or taking a shower. Electric showers have been damaged and houses have been flooded due to people forgetting to turn off taps, having turned them on in the hope of having water. The on-off frequency can vary from no cut-off for months to a pattern of every night for weeks. The county council solution has been in place for many years and is not acceptable in this day and age. The people of the area have listened to the Department blaming Kerry County Council and vice versa in respect of the submission of documents about the water scheme. This has been the situation for over 12 months. They are very interested in the Minister of State providing a solution which I hope to hear from him now in theHouse.


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