“In the House of Commons before a Motion is passed, the Speaker stands up and uncovers his face.
But in our house of commons (Our Toilet) before a motion is passed, the speaker sits down and uncovers his arse.”
With nine well paid jobs up for grabs after polling on Friday evening next, the very least that I would have expected was that one of our eighteen hopeful candidates from the electoral area of Templemore/Thurles, would have furnished their Curriculum Vitae (CV) in reply to my outlandish tirade of May 15th last. Alas not a word from anyone.
Last year our 49 (Reduced to 40 next Friday) Tipperary County Councillors earned almost €1.4 million. In North Tipperary 21 county councillors received over €630,000 altogether in salaries, including allowances, fees and expenses. Our 28 County Councillors in South Tipperary received over €760,000. These figures illustrate that the average amount paid to North Tipperary’s county councillors in 2013 was €30,170, slightly higher than the national average of just under €30,000.
These figures also illustrate that despite decreasing slightly from 2012, the average amount paid to North Tipperary Councillors in 2013 was higher than that paid in 2010, when they collected an average of €28,372 in similar salary and expense payments. No austerity there then for these double jobbers then, thank God.
Despite numerous thorough searches of my Google Mail, my Facebook, my Google+ and my LinkedIn, absolute silence – nothing. I even checked all my missed calls on my land-line and mobile phones and had my Windows 7 upgraded to 8.1.1, but not so much as a ‘chirp’ from a solitary soul. As a last resort I undertook a background check on my postal delivery man, just in case something lay unnoticed in his little green van; result – still nothing. As you, my readers will all be well aware; my request of earlier this month I believe was fair and reasonably straightforward.
Readers will remember that the information I sought concerned only the achievements accomplished by Councillors during their last five years in office. I was anxious to learn what each future job seeking Councillor had achieved, realized, attained, brought to fruition, pulled off, actually accomplished or fully completed, on behalf of ‘the ordinary people’ who placed them previously in high office. I had pointed out that we the ‘same ordinary people of Tipperary,’ did not want to hear, what they had discussed with “strong voices,” or about the work achieved by their senior political party colleagues in government, which they themselves had “welcomed,” fearful of Dublin’s lash from a party whip.
It would now appear that Irish Labour Party politician and Minister for Social Protection Joan Burton has indeed got it correct; recently made redundant Councillors down here in the electoral area of Templemore/Thurles are not actively committed to seeking full-time employment.
Is it not reasonable for an employer to seek out only top quality employees? Should we ‘the ordinary people’; the Employer if you will, not be viewed in the role of ‘Hirer and Firer,’ deciding on whether employees were worth rehiring again, based on their Curriculum Vitae (CV) and References received from their last places of employment? Not unreasonable, I think you will all agree.
Down here in the long grass of our forgotten electoral area of Templemore/Thurles presently, what Political Party you may belong is really of ” feck all importance,” to quote the words of Paddy Ryan, discussing austerity issues with me over a pint in Hayes Hotel last Tuesday night.
“Take that Sinn Féin Party” said he,” and to be honest I wish someone would. They cost us, the hard-working Irish taxpayers of this State, more money than our greedy bankers, politicians and developers put together, pursuing their reigns of terror. What did they achieve; fecking absolutely nothing, except of course their supporting of the daily murder of innocent individuals and in many cases their whole communities. Having jailed most of them, we let them out again after a short stay, in a veiled effort to encourage peace. Then what happened, they appeared down south and we allowed them to run for Dail Seats and the hallowed post of Presidency of Ireland. Now they have the neck to highlight our known problems, soliciting votes from those fed up of our current Coalition government’s inexperience, but without offering one single solution to our woes. Faith, the people of Tipperary saw through their little game in 2009, allowing them to occupy only one ‘stool’ out of a total of forty seven possible places to sit, relax and get fat.”
“Now keep your voice down Paddy,” said I, as I looked around me, before slipping quietly into the darkening gloom to check out the Curricula Vitae (Courses of life or CV’s) for the runners and riders lined out at the starting line in next Friday’s Local Elections.
All of our eighteen soon to be Election Candidates have ‘Priorities’ and ‘Strong Voices’ or in other words the usual palpable rubbish that brings a smile to the faces of those who bother to answer their door bells. Their offered support, according to electioneering literature handed out, have all the insincere appearance of a “Paste & Copy Job,” courtesy of MS Word. They ‘support’; Tourism, Pothole Filling, Employment, Education, Agriculture, Cultural and Sporting activities. They have strong voices when it comes to Gender Balance, Education, Community Care etc and of course, in the case of the very poor and in true French aristocracy fashion; “Qu’ils mangent de la brioche,” they promise to feed cake to those who have no bread. No one has informed them yet that most of these priorities no longer fall under their remit and therefore no longer their damned business as local representatives.
So is there anyone, in the past five years, of these same eighteen hopeful Councillors, who has achieved anything for the betterment of Thurles Town and its environs, I hear you ask? Did anyone create one job? Did anyone bring any tourism investment into our midst or was it all spent up around Nenagh, Roscrea and Cloughjordan, as is the usual monthly ‘welcomes’ from the ‘lesser spotted,’ sitting TD Mr Noel Coonan and chums?
Following much research I uncovered only one of these eighteen would-be Councillors actually succeeded in creating employment, in fact 41 jobs to-date. To achieve this, the same Councillor pulled and dragged 1.3 million Euro worth of investment into the town, to create a badly needed Enterprise centre, latter which today is not only a focal point for business in the town, but also a safe haven for entrepreneurship, offering expert advice from qualified staff.
This Councillor also cost the taxpayer the least amount in annual salary in 2013, of all the County Councillors sitting here in North Tipperary, just €26,028.00 to be exact. Same Councillor also remains Chairperson of the successful company known as the Tipperary Centre for Independent Living Ltd, and a committee member of Littleton Development Association, latter which has just completed building its Parish Community and Sports Centre. Of course as a Fianna Fáil Councillor you may not like his political affiliations, but no one man or woman can deny County Councillor Seamus Hanafin’s truly strong voice and undeniable ability.
I could find only two other Councillor truly worthy of receiving the X graphite mark on the ballot paper next Friday. From personal experience and personal dealings; both remain strong supporter / drivers of local tourism initiatives and publicly are the only councillors presently demanding the return home of the Derrynaflan Hoard to Thurles in time for next summer.
One of these latter two Councillor has succeeded in bringing over a half million Euro of investment to Thurles through grant aid funding for local cycling and walking strategies. Latter will include new cycle lanes, provision of walkways and behavioural change initiatives in local schools and workplaces thus encouraging people to switch their transport modes. Same will thus designate our town of Thurles one of Ireland’s Active Travel Towns. His name; Labour County and Local Councillor Mr John Kennedy.
The other Local Councillor whom I identified has been actively involved in every aspect of Thurles life, raising funding for various charities e.g. €20,000 for Suir Haven Cancer, €30,000 for improving accessibility to handicapped persons attending Thurles Leisure Centre and Swimming Pool and arranging Clothing Collections to raise money for the Tipperary Regional Youth Service Summer Camp. This latter councillor has also been a driving force behind our St.Patricks Day Parade Committee, is an active member of Thurles Rotary Club, Thurles Care Group, the Alzheimer’s Society, North Tipp Hospice, Rehabcare and the Jack and Jill Foundation to name but a few. I speak of course of Local Independent Councillor Evelyn Nevin.
As everyone will hopefully observe, local elections have really nothing to do with Party Politics, instead it is about electing people who earn above their weight in salary, while supporting local initiatives, creating employment and encouraging tourism and investment.
Now National Elections, well that is a different matter entirely. Same should be where you the voter use your true protest vote, to remonstrate against the dictatorial attitudes and actions of environment Minister Phil Hogan and health Minister Dr James Reilly, the actions and stupidity of whom have ensured that the life of this present government could be very short-lived, sending both Fine Gael and Labour back into their political wilderness.
People are well aware that a national government who refuses to understand that fair taxation is based solely on a person’s ability to pay, is no better than a dictatorship and should therefore be removed immediately from office, in any State that regards itself a true and real democracy.