Friday, 14 December 2012

Residents to "share cost" of repairing roads

Remember a few years back when B-B-B-Bertie was giving lectures around the world on how to run (no, not ruin) economies, and Mary Harney was blabbing on about how Ireland was closer to Boston than Berlin?

When Paddy and Mary O'Gobshite, in general,  thought they had suddenly stolen a march over the best financial and entrepreneurial brains on the planet by discovering a way to make capital assets appreciate in value into perpetuity?  

All shite, of course.  

B-B-B-Bertie Ahern was just a dishonest, bribe-taking shyster ("I wun itt onna horse"),  Mary Harney was talking out of her far-from-insubstantial arse, and Paddy and Mary O'Gobshite's mad borrowing - replicated by thousands and thousands of Paddy and Mary O'Gobshites all over the country - made our crazy little country bankrupt.

Boston or Berlin.  That is: the US free-enterprise, low tax, scant-welfare model  –  or Berlin, the sluggish, state-dependent,  high-tax, abundant-welfare model.   The Irish political class, however, want it both ways:  high taxation while offering little in return.

Ireland - even during the bubble - was never a low tax economy, unless you were Bono, a US multinational, or one of the thousands of property speculators – amateur and "professional" – who destroyed the country with government assistance via tax shelters and incentives.  

Now we have Leo Varadkar, very much in the Harney mould, telling people who pay income tax, PRSI, property tax, the Universal Social Charge, credit card tax, insurance levies, RTE licence fees,  Deposit Interest Retention Tax,  cheque book tax,  road tolls, road tax, Vehicle Registration Tax and Value Added Tax will be given the opportunity to partake in a scheme which will

"allow people to help share the cost of repairing local roads – or do it themselves – from next year."

I'm not making this up.  See below, from last weekend's Irish Independent:

Residents may have to share cost of repairing roads – or grab a shovel

By Paul Melia
Saturday December 08 2012

THE public may be asked to get out their shovels and wallets if they want their local road repaired.

Transport Minister Leo Varadkar says a new scheme will allow people to help share the cost of repairing local roads – or do it themselves – from next year.

Between €5m and €10m will be made available from the Government, with further funding to be sourced from the public.

He added it would allow minor works such as potholes to be repaired which might otherwise not be addressed.

"There are proposals to introduce a new community involvement scheme for regional and local roads on a pilot basis in 2013 involving an exchequer contribution of between €5m and €10m," he said.

"This revised scheme should allow communities and the State to share the cost, or the workload, involved in repairing minor roads which wouldn't otherwise be improved."
Similar schemes are already in place in local authorities.

Laois County Council has a Community Involvement in Roadworks Scheme, which applies to all public roads in the county.

This scheme allows residents who want to have road improvements carried out to part-fund the cost of the works jointly with the council.

In Roscommon, at least 25pc of the cost must be met by local residents who want the work carried out.

The Department of Transport said details, which were still being worked out, were due to be announced in a few weeks.

A spokesman said the community element of the scheme was not yet clear, but money would be available to local authorities to employ local contractors.

"There used to be a local improvement scheme, and it's a similar idea where there's community involvement but it's being developed," a spokesman said.
"It's being looked at, and funding is being provided. It's very early days."

The scheme is expected to apply to local roads, including country lanes and boreens.
Meanwhile, a €22m new road improvement scheme from Carrick Bridge to Clonfad Road (Dalystown) in Co Westmeath was opened yesterday.

The N52 improvements cover 5.6kms of single carriageway, and will reduce travel times between both areas by about one-third.

Mr Varadkar said it would "significantly" improve road safety, adding that the work was completed three months ahead of schedule.

He added that four road schemes would be completed next year: the Belturbet bypass, Cork Southern Ring Road interchanges upgrade, Tralee bypass and a section of the N4 in Co Westmeath.

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DC3 said...

Sweet living Jesus it can't get anymore bizarre.

What the HELL is this all about?
"Similar schemes are already in place in local authorities." ALREADY IN PLACE and NO ONE has flagged this in any media I have seen or heard! In the name of all sanity bring the British back. You know stupidity is NOT a virtue.

The Gombeen Man said...

It seems to be a source of national pride here, DC3...

Lew said...

This is just asking for lawsuits
"Paddy" fixes the road and it's not up to the "councils standard" they sue paddy


Motorist damages car after being driving on a road fixed by "Paddy" Motorist sues Paddy.

I was actually back in Ireland last weekend for the day and I'm amazed how much has changed - for the worse unfortunately, I used to love saying I can't wait to move back and how proud of being Irish I was..
"used to"

DC3 said...

You're soooo lucky Lew. Count your blessings you got out. It's the same scenario time after time on this island; the dregs always increase to such a level that it eventually becomes the norm. In this instance, Paddy will be paying someone else (a foreign entity)through multiple taxation, to do a Councils Workers job. It could only happen in holy Ireland.

Even in Africa this would be viewed as a sadistic joke.

The Gombeen Man said...

Lew, your observations are spot on. And as DC3 says, you're well out of the place. The place is a very bad joke indeed. You'd expect the Indo article above to appear on April 1st, but no... it's day-to-day reality here.

Jim Spriggs said...

Will there be 5 or 6 volunteer Paddies standing around watching one Paddy repair the hole, as is the norm when Paddy Councilman and his mates are fixing them? You couldn't make it up..

Anonymous said...

Between this and motorway tolls what exactly do we pay road tax for ?

DC3 said...