Seanad debates

Tuesday, 12 May 2015

Commencement Matters

Pyrite Remediation Programme Implementation

2:30 pm

Photo of Thomas ByrneThomas Byrne (Fianna Fail) | Oireachtas source

I ask the Minister of State to raise with the Department the concerns that are starting to bubble up regarding the pyrite remediation scheme. It is important we hold the Government to account in respect of the commitments it has given in this matter. As I stated, the funding allocated to addressing the pyrite problem is insufficient.

I am pleased to note the Minister of State's comment that the Act does not provide for a sunset clause as some of the householders affected by pyrite were not aware of this. It is possible, however, that the people affected may wish for improvements to the overall plan until the sun sets on this issue many years from now. All of us in politics owe a great deal to the individuals in question who are experiencing severe stress because their houses are falling down around them.

While we welcomed the scheme proposed by the Government, the broader issue of the Statute of Limitations needs to be revisited. Senators Darragh O'Brien, Averil Power and I introduced a Bill on this issue. It is not fair that State resources are being used for the pyrite mediation scheme as it was individual private builders and suppliers rather than the Government of the day which was at fault. In many cases, insurance companies have got away scot-free. I hope the Minister will take on board my comments and recognise the concerns surrounding this issue. I hope by raising this issue, I will help maintain pressure on the Government to have the necessary works finalised.


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