Stronger powers needed to deal with Tipp's derelict sites - Alan Kelly

Noel Dundon

Reporter:

Noel Dundon

Email:

nd@tipperarystar.ie

Call for action on owners of derelict Tipperary property

Derelict sites are evident in every town and village of Tipperary

“The fact remains that there are countless number of sites throughout the country which are derelict, where the local authority intervenes to make the site safe." - Deputy Alan Kelly.

Labour Leader and Tipperary TD, Alan Kelly has said his party’s proposal for derelict commercial sites  will strengthen the hand of Tipperary County Council to tackle eyesores and abandoned sites in the county by ensuring that any costs associated with securing a property can be met from future sale proceeds.

This change will also provide an incentive to owners to maintain vacant derelict sites as the local council will have a power to recoup costs. 

He said: "My Labour Party colleague Seán Sherlock TD has introduced a new bill in the Dáil called the Derelict Sites Amendment Bill 2021 which is designed to strengthen the hand of local authorities like Tipperary to deal with derelict sites across the county.

“This Bill would make the local authority a secured creditor for the purposes of a subsequent liquidation. This is an issue relevant to previously vibrant commercial sites that can lie vacant for years. 

Labour Party Leader, Deputy Alan Kelly

“The fact remains that there are countless number of sites throughout the country which are derelict, where the local authority intervenes to make the site safe. If that site is in the ownership of an insolvent company, the taxpayer loses because the public, through the local authority in making the site safe, has no mechanism to recoup that funding," he said.

Tipperary County Council officials are questioned at many meetings thoughout the year at Municipal District Council level and at the full monthly meetings of the parent body, about derelict sites, their status and what can be done to deal with them.  A very lengthy process usually ensues with great difficulty experienced in overcoming the problems.

Deputy Kelly continued: “The purpose of this legislation is to make good that wrong, and to ensure that the taxpayer is protected, where if it is protecting its citizens within a streetscape such that where a building becomes derelict, that if it has to make safe that building, it is not left at a loss for the costs of making that building safe. I'm hopeful the Government will support this bill and I'm hopeful that it will receive cross party support, because it is something that affects each and every one of us in our community,” he said.

The Government did not oppose the introduction of the Bill and it will go forward to second stage in Private Member's time