• Cycle

    Casserly in push for adventure tourism

    That was the message from Councillor Marie Casserly who is proposing that the Council develop a five year Tourism Strategy to capitalise on our growing reputation as an adventure capital.

    Some of the key projects suggested by Cllr Casserly include developing greenways in the countryside, new blueway routes for water activities, enhancing beach facilities and creating and supporting a mountain biking site in Coolaney to “rival any in Ireland.”

    Cllr Michael Clarke said the county needed a five year strategy.

    Council CEO Ciarán Hayes said that work has started on a tourism strategy and has had “initial conversations” with Fáilte Ireland, IT Sligo and the Chamber of Commerce.

    He said it was “important that any strategy is thoroughly researched for members and includes a study of the nature of the tourism product to be offered. “We cannot come at this from a blunderbuss approach.”

    Mr Hayes said members needed to consider if the Council was a direct provider of tourism or a facilitator between the providers and the agencies.

    “How does it develop our arts and cultural offering? How does it include our night-time economy?” he asked.

    Responding, Cllr Casserly said the Council should be both provider and facilitator.

    “A lot of plans and policies end up sitting on a shelf. I’m sure that won’t happen here. We need to have something more concrete and see what we’ve achieved in five or six months time,” she said.

    Mr Hayes said he agreed and said it was not his intention to “put together a strategy to gather dust.”

    “Each councillor will come under pressure. We need to focus our resources to get the most for Sligo. We will move forward on that in the coming months,” he added.

  • calculator

    Nothing Left to Cut

    We cannot cut our cloth anymore, there’s nothing left to cut.
    Minister for the Environment Alan Kelly has given €1.5 million in grants
    to towns in his new constituency such as Thurles and Clonmel against
    expert advice even though projects from other towns got significantly
    higher scores from an independent assessment group. The scoring
    system was released under the Freedom of Information Act. This is the
    type of politics that that the government parties claimed they were going
    to change when elected to power 5 years ago.
    So while local authorities and worthwhile community and tourism
    projects throughout the North West region are asked to cut their cloth
    and accept more austerity measures Minister Kelly can deviate from this
    for the benefit of his own electorate. Where is the fairness in that? We
    have to go with our begging bowls to look for a few thousand euro for
    feasibility studies for projects that will create jobs, and wait for years for
    the penny to drop, whereas the Government should be investing in these
    immediately. We cannot accept any more austerity and get into the
    scenario where basic services are being cut anymore than they are
    already, where there is a recruitment embargo on library staff and
    outdoor staff in local authorities are not being replaced when they retire.
    It’s a bit rich coming from the Labour Minister and the Government telling
    the people of Sligo cut our cloth as he imposes restrictions on Sligo.
    There is nothing left to cut, it’s all gone a long time ago. I am calling on
    all elected representatives to put pressure on Minister Kelly to stop
    imposing these cuts and demands and let local authorities and elected
    members deliver the necessary services that will enable the North West
    to grow and thrive.
  • Dunnes Stores

    Dunnes Stores – Workers Rights

    Dunnes Stores is one of a number of employers in Ireland that do not recognize their employees rights to be represented by a union in relation to any discussions regarding their employment.

    The fact is that over 4000 employees of Dunnes are members of a union (Mandate) and yet the company can, legally, ignore their request to be represented

    This has resulted in the company being able to introduce low hours contracts, where employees do not know when they are rostered to work until very close to the time they are due in work. This leads to an intolerable situation, where employees are always on call from their workplace

    The low (zero) hours contracts are particularly difficult to deal with. An employee does not know how many hours they will be working from week to week, and therefore do not know what their income will be. This has a knock on effect in relation to all aspects of their lives, including housing (getting a mortgage would be almost impossible under these circumstances).

    According to a survey of staff 75% are on part time flexible contracts and 98% want more hours employment, indicating a significant cohort of underemployed people working for Dunnes.

    The Supreme court in the Ryanair case has clearly found that employers are entitled to operate a non unionised place of work, which is the situation that pertains today.

    However, the lisbon treaty, which contains the EU charter of fundemental rights contains the ‘Right to collective bargaining and action’.

    Given the precedence of European Law over National Law, it seems that a high court case, with the possibility of appealing to the Supreme Court and the European Courts could well be needed to allow the principle of collective bargaining to take place


  • mullaghmore

    Royal Visit

    The visit of Prince Charles and his wife Camilla is a very welcome development for our region. The coverage and exposure for this type of visit to the North West is invaluable. I’m sure it will be an emotional visit for him and for locals alike and it shows that the relationship between our two countries has become one of solid friendship.
    Britain is our closest neighbour and largest trading partner and a strong cordial relationship between neighbours is essential for the social and economic growth of both countries.

    The visit to Yeats’s Grave at Drumcliffe and the Model Gallery will highlight the rich culture and heritage of the region and the visit to IT Sligo will be a fantastic opportunity for the college to showcase it’s state of the art facilities.

    This visit puts the North West and the Wild Atlantic Way in the shop window for Tourism from the United Kingdom and Internationally and it’s a great opportunity to show off the natural beauty of our region.

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