A Councillor has warned that Tipperary County Council could face action from residents unless urgent action is taken in relation to a housing estate in Emly, heard the February meeting of Cashel Tipperary municipal district.
However, in another sign of the improving economy, there has been a major uptick in the number of planning applications in the Cashel Tipperary area, Councillors were told.
Housing official Caroline Conway said there has been a 28.08% increase in the number of applications from 2017 to 2018 in Cashel/Tipperary. Over the whole of Co Tipperary, the figure was 13.74%.
In relation to enforcement proceedings, there were 45 complaints made from January 1 to December 31 2018 in relation to alleged unauthorised development in the Cashel-Tipperary MD. Some 37 warning letters and seven enforcement notices were issued.
For 2018, there were 228 valid applications in Cashel/Tipperary, 202 decisions granted, and 3 decisions refused. The same figure for Co Tipperary was 1,200 valid applications, 1,041 decisions granted, and 24 decisions refused. In relation to the taking in charge of estates, Cluain Orge is being assessed by the planning section, while Rossmore Village - Springfield Grove, Wind Mill Close (Cashel), West Meadows, Dun Chormaic, and The Steeples (Cashel) are being resolved in a process with third parties.
A receiver has been appointed to The Steeples on behalf of NAMA. There was a “significant liability” involved, Ms Conway told Cllr Tom Wood. “We are working with the receiver to see if a resolution can be reached.”
Furthermore, three developments with Irish Water are awaiting agreement of a site resolution plan or a “response to categorisation”. These include: Roselawn, Rosanna Close, and Rossmore Village - Springfield Crescent.
Cluainarra, in Bansha, is a development with which the roads section is up for review, and/or advertising under Section 180.
Developments that have been taken in charge to date in 2019 include Summercove Meadows, Mill Hollow, Abbey Court, and An Duiche.
Cllr Denis Leahy drew attention to Glencourt, in Emly, “probably one of the most scenic villages in the whole county”. “Ongoing issues there need to be addressed” as it is unfair on people who had bought houses in the estate for the very first time. “It seems to be a disaster that is not going unnoticed by the County Council. I feel for the people who went in there.”
Lighting at numbers 61 to 75 in Springfield Crescent in Rossmore village have been out for a number of weeks, said Cllr Leahy.
Cllr Roger Kennedy said, in relation to Rocksprings estate, that the Department continues to refuse to take in charge estates that have private septic tank developments. “It’s totally wrong.” This was putting pressure on people, and making them wonder if their estates “will ever be taken in charge.”
Cllr Kennedy called on Cathaoirleach Cllr Michael Fitzgerald to use his influence to influence the Minister. “It’s coming up time and time again. I cannot see why they won’t accept it when everything else is working right.” It was “just the belligerence of the department that they are not making progress,” added Cllr Kennedy.
Cllr John Crosse said he noted people’s “frustration” and annoyance that the taking in charge process takes so long. “It’s frightening to think how long these estates will take. It beggars belief.”
Ms Conway said they had 25 estates taken in charge in 2018, and they hope to have another 25 taken in charge this year. This amounts to 305 units in this district from 2018 to date.
Cllr Mary Hanna Hourigan said she knew one woman who has a law degree who lives in the estate. “I really worry that if this is not addressed soon... people are at the end of their tether, paying mortgages.” Some of them are “highly professional people”. “If you do not tackle this immediately, they will take Tipperary Co Council to court and I do not say that lightly,” said Cllr Hourigan.
Rosanna Close is awaiting three signatures to validate the application, said Ms Conway.