Deputy Jackie Cahill: fears Garda services will be stretched
Fianna Fáil TD for Tipperary Jackie Cahill says he has grave concerns about amalgamating the Tipperary Garda Division with the Clare Division.
“I have concerns that the merging of our Garda Division will see resources stretched too far. Under the new Division boundary, we a looking at an area stretching from Carrick-on-Suir to Ennistymon. I am worried that services will be stretched too far to cope with the size of the Division," he said.
Deputy Cahill said that County Tipperary had its own unique policing requirements. Most of Tipperary was rural and required a robust and mobile police force.
"I believe merging with Clare will only dilute services and this should not be permitted," said the Thurles-based TD.
He said that he was also concerned about where the divisional headquarters will be and how many superintendents will be in place. At the moment there are five superintendents in Tipperary and two in Clare. Under the new plan the number of superintendents is to be cut from seven to four, and he wants to know where will these positions be lost.
“I am calling on the Minister for Justice to ensure that any savings made from the new Divisions should be reinvested into frontline Garda resources in our area," said Deputy Cahill.
He was concerned that this announcement was another attempt by Government to portray itself as proactive, when in fact, it was failing to deliver on key issues.
"We have seen similar announcements in health, with the proposed reorganisation of the HSE. Fine Gael must reassess its obsession with style over substance and begin delivering results for people in Tipperary and across the country," he said.
Deputy Cahill said that uncertainty remained under the new plans, and the Minister and Garda Commissioner should provide further details and engage with communities.