Month: June 2015

O’Donovan welcomes €3million EU funding for Shannon Foynes Port

Added June 30th, 2015

Limerick Fine Gael TD Patrick O’Donovan has welcomed the announcement of €3million funding from the EU for development works in Foynes Port. The funding comes from the EU’s Trans European Transport Network (TEN-T) and will be used on the construction of the East Jetty in the Port together with support for a feasibility study on the use of the railway line into the Port.

“This is fantastic news for Co. Limerick and is a huge investment in the port. It is one of 276 projects which has been funded across the European Union totalling over €13billion and it represents a major vote of confidence in the Shannon Foynes Port Company.”

Patrick O’Donovan who is a member of the Oireachtas Transport Committee said that the announcement which will support up to 60 jobs in the construction of the jetty comes at a very important time for the port.

“Since this Government came to office we have prioritised the development of Foynes Port and as the only Limerick member of the Transport Committee I have always pushed the case for Foynes. I make no apology for the fact that since I became a TD I have been a strong advocate for the development of Foynes Port because I recognise the potential of the Port and the Shannon Estuary to drive economic growth and job creation in Co. Limerick. This strategy has worked, and this TEN-T funding will drive that progress even further.”

Patrick O’Donovan said that announcement of this investment came as a result of the Government decision to make Foynes a port of Strategic National Importance with Dublin and Cork. This means that Foynes is the only strategic port on the West Coast of Ireland and has a very important role in the development of the Mid-West and the West. He said that Board, Management and Staff in the Port Company had driven the development and the progress in the harbour and deserved to be congratulated.

He paid tribute to his Fine Gael colleague Deirdre Clune MEP, a member of the European Parliament Transport Committee who he said made strong representations on behalf of Foynes. He added that this strong working relationship at National and European level can bring benefits to Co. Limerick.

My week in the Dáil – 28th June

Added June 29th, 2015

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My week in the Dáil

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New Garda vehicles for Limerick part of a comprehensive plan to fight crime – O’Donovan

Added June 24th, 2015

“Limerick is receiving 15 Garda cars in 2015”, says Fine Gael TD Patrick O’Donovan for Limerick. The allocation of 15 Garda cars for Limerick in 2015 will really help the fight against crime in our communities.”

“11 cars have been issued to Limerick so far this year with 4 due to be issued in the coming weeks. In addition to this 2015 allocation, €27.5 million was invested in new Garda vehicles between 2012 and 2014, which was an increase on the €4.8 million allocated by the previous Government in Budgets 2009-2011. In fact, Fine Gael has provided An Garda Síochána with at least €414 million more investment than Fianna Fáil had proposed for the same period. By contrast, Fine Gael in Government is determined to combat crime in local communities.”

“Our local Gardaí will be really bolstered by this influx of new vehicles, which is part of the Government’s comprehensive plan to fight crime. As well as increasing the number of Garda vehicles, we are bringing more Gardaí out from behind the desks and out onto our streets.

“We are also strengthening An Garda Síochána for the future by reopening the Garda training college in Templemore. When Fianna Fáil closed Templemore during their disastrous last term in Government it seemed to sound the death knell for Garda training. It is great to see Templemore rejuvenated again with 300 new students entering the college last September and another 250 recruits starting their training this year, bringing the total to 550.

“As well as strengthening our Garda force and increasing the numbers of vehicles, the Minister for Justice, France Fitzgerald, is bringing in legislation to strengthen our response to burglaries. Too many people have had their homes violated and the proposed measures include longer sentences for repeat offenders.

“In a move to support the victims of crime the Minister is also planning to bring in legislation to allow for implementation of the EU Victims Directive, and new Garda Victim Support Offices will be established in every Garda division.

“With these practical measures and far reaching reforms we are going to show criminals how seriously we are taking the fight against crime.”

 

My week in the Dáil – 21st June

Added June 23rd, 2015

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O’Donovan to attend CDU conference

Added June 22nd, 2015

Limerick TD Patrick O’Donovan is to attend a conference organised by the political party of German Chancellor Angela Merkel in Berlin. He has been selected by Taoiseach Enda Kenny to attend the conference which is being hosted by the sister party of Fine Gael in Germany, the Christian Democratic Union, CDU. Patrick O’Donovan is the Chairman of the Fine Gael committee on Public Expenditure and Reform and is a member of the Dáil Public Accounts Committee

“I was delighted to be asked by the Taoiseach’s office to be the only representative from Ireland to attend this conference which is called after Konrad Adenauer, who was the first Chancellor of West Germany after the Second World War and founder of Chancellor Merkel’s Party, CDU. I understand that delegates will be in attendance from across the world and there is a very wide agenda to be considered at it including foreign and domestic political issues.”

Patrick O’Donovan said that he hoped to use the opportunity given to him to attend the conference to make contact with German and other EU representatives in particular. “It’s clear over the last number of years that as we continue our road to economic recovery that we need to constantly engage with other political representatives. I will be using this conference to make contact with backbench members of the German Parliament and to build relationships with them as I have done as a member of the British Irish Parliamentary Assembly.”

 

O’Donovan raises child literacy with Minister in Dáil

Added June 17th, 2015

Limerick Fine Gael TD Patrick O’Donovan has raised the need for the Department of Education to consider extending the Reading Recovery Programme to all primary schools in the country.

Patrick O’Donovan was speaking in the Dáil where he raised the issue with the Minister for Education and Skills, Jan O’Sullivan TD. He told the Dáil that since the Reading Recovery initiative was introduced, over 20,000 children had benefitted from it and teachers and parents testified that the Programme was overwhelmingly successful.

The Limerick TD said that he had been present last week at the Limerick Education Centre for the presentation of certificates to newly qualified Reading Recovery Teachers. These are teachers that work on a one to one basis with children in Senior Infants and First Class for short periods of time where an intensive Programme is followed. It is a structured programme for eighteen weeks and at last week’s event the results were clear to be seen.

Patrick O’Donovan told the Dáil that he welcomed the decision by the Department to allow for extension of the Programme to non-Deis schools but he said that the Department needed to make provision for an increased number of Reading Recovery Leaders, the qualified people who would train the teachers.

“I’ve listened to parents of children, and more importantly listened to the children themselves, and sees the progress that they have made in a short period of time. I was glad that the Minister appreciates the benefits of the programme and that she has accepted my suggestion to allow for a greater number of teachers to be trained, and as a result schools to participate and children to benefit.”

He told the Dáil that one of the greatest gifts that can be given to a child is the ability to read independently. He added that educational disadvantage is not specific to any one area and that regardless of background children may experience difficulties in reading at an early age and if there is a program available that will help children, like Reading Recovery does, then every child should have access. Patrick O’Donovan said the he will continue to pursue the issue with the Department but he welcomed the response of the Minister to examine the issue further.

My week in the Dáil – 14th June

Added June 15th, 2015

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My week in the Dáil

The rest of my updates can be found on my website under the My week in the Dáil section

My week in the Dáil – 7th June

Added June 9th, 2015

Please follow the below link to read my

My week in the Dáil

The rest of my updates can be found on my website under the My week in the Dáil section

O’Donovan welcomes Eircom broadband upgrade for rural Limerick

Added June 4th, 2015

Limerick Fine Gael TD, Patrick O’Donovan has welcomed the announcement by Eircom to expand its broadband services in Co. Limerick. Patrick O’Donovan, who is a member of the Oireachtas Committee on Transport and Communications, said that he has been raising the need to improve the roll out of broadband services in rural communities in the Dáil and in the Committee and this is welcome news for businesses and householders.

Eircom have announced an improved service in; Ballagh, Ballyagran, Ballylanders, Broadford, Feenagh, Galbally, Glenroe, Granagh, Herbertstown, Knockaderry, Kilmeedy, Meanus, Pallasgreen and Tournafulla

“This is very welcome news for the communities that are going to see an improved service, but it is by no means a final solution. I know that there are communities across Co. limerick in desperate need of an improved broadband service and that is why the Government is developing the National Broadband Plan, which is the Government’s plan to have high speed quality broadband delivered to every home and business in the country.”

“This plan acknowledges that there are parts of the country where commercial operators are not providing a service and the Government have committed to addressing these communities and to providing a service to them. This involves approval from the EU and work within the Department of Communications, Energy and Natural Resources is currently well under way and is on schedule.”

Patrick O’Donovan said that he would be continuing to use his position as a member of the Oirecahtas Communications Committee to prioritise the need for improved broadband services. He said that there had been a number of very positive initiatives under this Government including legislation that allowed ESB to enter into a relationship with Vodafone to use the existing ESB network to deliver broadband cables. He said that this project is now underway and is also delivering badly needed connectivity to rural communities.

 

O’Donovan hosts first in series of business seminars

Added June 2nd, 2015

Limerick Fine Gael TD Patrick O’Donovan has hosted the first in a series of three business seminars entitled “The Economic Recovery and You” in Newcastle West. The seminars have been organised by Patrick O’Donovan who is chairman of the Fine Gael Committee on Public Expenditure and Reform, to form part of his pre-budget submission to the Minister’s for Finance and Public Expenditure.

The first seminar took place in the Desmond Complex, Newcastle West. The meeting was chaired by Michael Finucane, Chairperson of Newcastle West Community Council and keynote speakers on the night were Brian McEnery of BDO, Bernie Moloney of the Limerick Local Enterprise Office and Elaina Fitzgerald Kane of the Woodlands House Hotel. Minister of State at the Departments of Enterprise and Education, Damien English TD represented the Government on the night and answered questions from those in attendance. Minister English detailed the progress which has been made to date in rebuilding the economy and the country since 2011. He said that more needed to be done, and he gave specific details of the work that he is involved in, particularly in the area of youth unemployment, traineeships and apprenticeships. He also outlined supports that are in place for the self-employed.

Speaking after the meeting Patrick O’Donovan said he welcomed the engagement with local business people and said that the exercise would form a very important part of his submission to Government. “It was a very lively and open meeting with many issues raised, all of which I noted and will include in my report.”

Patrick O’Donovan said he is hosting two further seminars in Adare and Kilmallock which will be open to local businesses to attend. Details of speakers for these two seminars will be announced later and he added that anyone who wishes to make a submission can do so by attending or by contacting him directly in his constituency offices in Newcastle West and Kilmallock or on line.

“This is an important listening exercise which I have organised to give business people here in Limerick a chance to feedback directly to Government. When all three seminars are complete I will publish the findings on line. I welcome any suggestion that people want to make and can assure them that as part of this consultation process that they will be included in the final report to Government.”

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