Tuesday, 15 January 2019
Department of Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht
1216. To ask the Minister for Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht the extent to which she expects to achieve an amicable resolution of issues between Waterways Ireland and traditional dwellers and recreational users of the Grand Canal, County Kildare; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [1027/19]
Waterways Ireland continues to work closely with boat owners using the canals, adjacent land owners and local committees. Meetings are also held with the key stakeholder interest groups, the Royal Canal Amenity Group, Inland Waterways Association of Ireland (IWAI) and the Heritage Boat Association (HBA).
In addition, Waterways Ireland works alongside the Friends of the Grand Canal and Royal Canal Clean-Up Group in Dublin and the newly established Grand Canal Dock Group, who like many of the communities throughout the waterways support the maintenance of our waterways. Waterways Ireland Operational staff, lockkeepers and waterway patrollers meet canal users on a daily basis and provide a wide range of services to all our recreational users.
Inspectorate staff manage boat use on the canals in accordance with the 1988 Canal Bye-laws. In this regard, Waterways Ireland continues to concentrate on boats which consistently remain in breach of the Bye-laws. Where a boat owner fails to respond to requests to comply, after notification by letters, telephone calls and formal notice, a programme of boat removal continues.
The Heritage Act 2018 was signed into law by the President on 18 July 2018 and Waterways Ireland will consult with its stakeholders in the drafting of additional Byelaws to ensure proper regulation of craft on the waterways.