Over 850 submissions were received for the Clare County Development Plan 2017-2025.
At a special meeting of Clare County Council to propose the draft plan, acting CEO Ger Dollard revealed that it was the highest amount of submissions ever received by the local authority. This reflects a strong public engagement according to Dollard who added that it would be freely available to view in September. He is hopeful a final plan would be adopted by the end of December.
Fianna Fáil Cllr PJ Kelly paid tribute to the staff for their work and for what he described as “a serious outbreak of common sense”. He referred to the 1985 equivalent which Kelly stated had less than one hundred pages and by 1999 left the Council “out of their depth”. He acknowledged that the current plan wasn’t perfect but blamed EU rules and various departments for making the task more difficult. Kelly praised the elected members for working as a team.
Gabriel Keating seconded the comments of PJ Kelly with the Fine Gael Cllr praising the council staff for their “trojan work”. Fianna Fáil’s Tony O’Brien thanked staff for their efforts in putting the draft together.
Meelick Cllr Cathal Crowe highlighted the high rate of submissions from the parish and said councillors need to rally behind the community.
Kelly speaking at the end of the discussion stated the application of the document would be the test of it. Fine Gael’s Johnny Flynn said it was “important to let the general public know all submissions were dealt with by planners”.