With effect from the 29th of October 2013 the application process for an Irish National Drivers Licence is changing. A new plastic card driver licence has been introduced, replacing the previous paper driving licence and learner permit.
When applying here in Tipperary, residents will need to visit one of the two new National Driver Licence Service (NDLS) centres to be set up at Suite No 9, Second Floor, Powerstown House, Clonmel(South Tipp) or No 10 Silver Street, Nenagh(North Tipp).
As part of what now will be a face-to-face application process, your photo and your signature will be captured digitally. These will be included in the existing fee which will see costs rise significantly, with a one-year driving licence costing €25, a three-year driving licence costing €35 and a ten-year driving licence costing €55. You will also be required to provide additional documentation to confirm your identity. Further information on this and other conditions are available on the NDLS website.
This is an EU initiative to introduce a more secure, compact style of licence for use in all member states. The number of driving licence categories have also increased and the minimum age requirement for certain categories have likewise changed.
This new National Drivers Licensing initiative is being viewed as an unnecessary interference in Irish affairs at a time when Ireland’s motorists face great financial hardship and where many secondary roads continue to remain in an unsafe condition.
Because of the required face-to-face application process now required, those wishing to renew Driver Licences can expect unnecessary delays of up to 5 hours at these newly appointed centres. While persons of advanced years will find the process a further cause for distress, this change will now most certainly affect the annual incomes of various photographic stations and pharmaceutical outlets, latter who previously supplied passport photographs for same required licences.
One hopes that this new technology will be an improvement on our previous waste of public monies. I refer of course to the investment of €55m on 7,600 ill-fated e-voting machines which were later sold for a reported €70,267 to KMK Metals Recycling Ltd, for shredding, earning the latter company in excess of 1 million Euro.
A paramedic, who used his iPhone to spy on female colleagues in a unisex toilet, has walked free from Nenagh Courthouse, without a conviction.
Mr Robert Murphy had pleaded guilty in March 2013 to a charge of harassment committed on May 5th 2012, following the discovery of his iPhone in a toilet at a HSE ambulance base situated at Tyone, Nenagh Tipperary.
Nenagh District Court were told of how one of Mr Murphy’s female colleagues had noticed a box of disposable gloves with holes punched in it, perched on a windowsill at the toilet. When she examined the box closely she discovered Mr Murphy’s phone recording her in video mode.
The unnamed victim of the case then complained to her supervisor and Mr Murphy admitted guilt, apologised and deleted the video recording in front of the victim, Nenagh court was told.
The following day Gardaí visited Mr Murphy’s home and the father of three again admitted his guilt.
In court today Mr Murphy’s solicitor stated to Judge Elizabeth MacGrath that his client had previously put his life in danger for the public’s safety and had performed over and above the line of duty in his occupation as a paramedic, and he could not see any service to the people of Ireland in State law now recording a conviction in this particular case.
The court was informed that Mr Murphy, who was supported in court by family and friends, had fully engaged with the probation services and continued to undergo counselling, having paid €5,000 in compensation to his accuser.
The court was also informed that Mr Murphy was facing serious disciplinary action by his employers, the HSE, and if a conviction was recorded it would have very serious consequences for any future employment.
Judge Elizabeth MacGrath took into consideration Mr Murphy’s previous unblemished character; his traumatic life as a child when his mother was murdered and his father’s conviction, forcing him to move from the US to Ireland at the age of eight years; the fact that he had engaged fully with the probation services and also that Mr Murphy’s wife had been diagnosed with cancer four years ago, into her judgement decision.
In applied the Probation Act, Judge MacGrath stated that the accused had gone as far as he could go, in making amends and that he was of very low risk of re-offending or of becoming a danger to anyone into the future.
An on duty member of An Garda Síochána, who claimed that a man deliberately spat blood and saliva into his face threatening to infect him with HIV, has been awarded €100,000 damages under the Garda Compensation Act. (Report Independent.ie)
Garda John McDonnell, aged 50, had been assaulted in November 2007 while attempting to arrest a man, involved in a breach of the peace, at Cashel Place, Cashel, South Tipperary. The Garda had sought compensation for anxiety and distress he allegedly suffered regarding fear of potential HIV and Hepatitis C infection and for bruising injuries received to his neck, back and arms, obtained during this incident.
In a reserved judgement Justice Mary Irvine stated it was unusual that the Garda victim had not immediately wiped the blood and saliva off his face, when in fear of contracting possible infections, but had instead returned to Cashel Garda Station where a colleague had taken photographs of facial blood spittle, prior to it being then washed off. Garda McDonnell’s assailant did not have HIV or Hepatitis C up to two weeks after the assault.
Justice Mary Irvine took into account Garda McDonnell’s significant history of back problems, which he had incurred during an assault while on duty in 1998, and for which he had previously been awarded €40,000 under the Garda Compensation Act.
The judge accepted his claim for loss of earnings and awarded €65,000 damages for personal injury; €31,000 for reduced past and future loss of earnings and gratuity up to the age of 55, plus €4,000 in special damages.
County Tipperary Radio Ltd, trading as Tipp FM radio station has apologised in the High Court to two retired Garda Sergeants over false allegations made by a contributor.
Tipp FM has also agreed to pay damages & discharge legal costs in the case of Sgt Sean Sherlock and Sgt Tony Quinn, both whom were formerly stationed here in Thurles, Co Tipperary.
The action arose out of defamatory comments made by a contributor live on air, during a programme broadcast on December 5th, 2008. The contributor had insinuated that both sergeants had perjured themselves in High Court proceedings and that they had been guilty of misconduct.
Mr John Trainor SC, representing both retired sergeants, told Ms Justice Elizabeth Dunne that the case had been settled on the basis of the apology, which was to be read in court.
Tipp FM acknowledged that the allegations were groundless, defamatory, wholly wrong and ought not to have been the subject of the broadcast. The station also acknowledged and confirmed that both Sergeants were men of the highest calibre and reputation and had at all times served their community in the highest possible traditions of An Garda Síochána.
Tipp FM also acknowledged that the public broadcast had caused serious personal and professional damage to both men’s reputations and caused both men and their family’s considerable personal distress.
Former Eurovision singer Mr Chris Doran, who represented Ireland unsuccessfully in the Eurovision Song Contest in Turkey in 2004, was one of seven men and one woman brought before a special sitting of Carrick-on-Suir district court, following a row in Sean Kelly Square shortly after 9.00am in the town on Friday morning last.
The eight accused were named as Bernard Cawley, Woodvale Walk, Fethard, Co Tipperary; Michael Sweeney (Snr) and Michael Sweeney (Jnr), Elm Park, Clonmel Co Tipperary; John Paul and Thomas McCarthy, Pinewood Drive, Clonmel, Co Tipperary; Chris Doran, Tramore, Co Waterford; Lee Ahern, Heywood Close, Clonmel, Co Tipperary, and Addey Ahern, Pinewood Drive, Clonmel, Co Tipperary.
All eight individuals face one charge each of violence or threatening to use violence & were granted free legal aid by Judge Kevin Staunton, having been remanded on their own bond of €500 each. All have been ordered to appear in court again on July 4th next.
Of the eight accused, seven have addresses in Clonmel & Fethard in County Tipperary and one has an address in Tramore, Co Waterford.
Chris Doran, who won the ‘You’re A Star,‘ competition featured on RTE in 2004 and who represented Ireland in the Eurovision Song Contest in Istanbul that same year with a song written by Westlife’s Brian McFadden, entitled “If My World Stopped Turning,” has been ordered to reside at his own apartment in Tramore and to observe bail conditions including a strict curfew between the hours of 11.00pm & 7.00am nightly.
Subject to a file being prepared for the Office of the Director of Public Prosecutions (DPP), the court heard that other charges may be pursued in relation to this same incident.