‘KCC has shot itself in the foot’ - Cllr. Willie Hamilton

A Newbridge Town Councillor has called for Kildare County Council to take-in-charge a 16 year-old housing estate after residents had to fork out E2,000 to deal with an infestation of sewer rats.

A Newbridge Town Councillor has called for Kildare County Council to take-in-charge a 16 year-old housing estate after residents had to fork out E2,000 to deal with an infestation of sewer rats.

Cllr Willie Hamilton informed the monthly town council meeting last Tuesday night that Kildare County Council left the residents of College Orchard ‘on their own to deal with the situation’.

“Residents of two houses in the estate had to leave their homes because of rat infestation,” he said.

“The rat trap in the drain outside of their premises had never been finished in the sewer system. The total cost to incurred was E2,000 which was paid by the residents. This was out of their control, not on their property but on a public road. It is unacceptable that in their hour of need the council left these people totally on their own to deal with the situation.”

Cllr Hamilton added that in the era of property tax the council had ‘shot it self in the foot’.

“The council has shot itself in the foot in relation to this. The very least they could have done would be to respond to these residents. Asking a resident to go after a developer who completed an estate 16 years ago is completely unacceptable. The council is supposed to use the bond or pursue the developer. We need to ask the council will they now do the right thing and prioritise College Orchard.”

The motion was seconded by Mayor of Newbridge Murty Aspell and all councillors around were in agreement with the issue. Meanwhile Cllr Michael ‘Spike’ Nolan raised the issue of the long overdue upgrade for Mooney’s Stream, which runs at the back of the estate. The meeting also heard from a handful of residents, who were in attendance, and claimed this to be the source of the problem.

“There was funding given for upgrade works of Mooney’s Stream, about E50,000, when is that work going to start and finish?,” he said.

“We need to request answers on this.”

Cllr Pat Black confirmed that E48,000 was made available in 2009 for the upgrade works of Mooney’s Stream.

“The developer levies paid from the two estates of College Orchard and College Farm was well in excess of E48,000.” he said.

Cllr Damian Molyneaux added that they should also request information on the bond and how much was paid to Kildare County Council.

Cllr Hamilton concluded that the residents should be reimbursed their costs if possible.

The issue was also raised the following morning at the Kildare Area Committee meeting.

- Paula Campbell