Land Development Agency: A beginning made but lots more to do.

Independent TD Michael Fitzmaurice has called on the Government to fully re-open Irish building sites and to end restrictions on people having to view houses via video links.

Commenting on the Governments Land Development Agency Bill (LDA), the Roscommon-Galway TD said: “Let’s get building fully restarted on March 5th. We need houses, and we need infrastructure and construction has been compliant with all the coronavirus rules.

“We need to take the rebuilding of Ireland by the scruff of the neck and to end the scenario where people have to view new homes by video-link.”

Fitzmaurice also warned that there was a need for real change in how we approached housing and in particular warned that it was time to take housing away from the Department and councils.

The Independent TD said: “The Department has been an unmitigated disaster for ten years and our councils have not got the current capacity to build housing for working people – given the decrease in resources and expertise they have experienced over the years.”

He also warned that though the LDA represents a start, we should go a lot further when it comes to building and that the regeneration of Ireland’s housing stock is far too important an issue to be left in the hands of people who haven’t the capacity to deliver.

For house building to accelerate he warned: “We need to create a body that has real expertise.

“It should hire people with a track record and pay by results. Any new body should not become a retirement home providing soft landings.”

Fitzmaurice also said small local construction firms should be preferred and warned:

“We need to avoid a repeat of the Children’s Hospital fiasco. Work should be given to small local firms rather than big conglomerates.”

Concluding, the independent TD warned that when it came to planning laws: “As part of the national development plan, Project Ireland 2040, there seems to be an effort to push people towards larger towns and cities.

“When you look at county development plans at present, it appears as if smaller towns which don’t have certain infrastructure – be it sewerage or water etc – are being de-zoned. This will have a massive impact on small towns in rural Ireland.”

For further information contact Michael Fitzmaurice at 086-1914565 

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