Failure to act on Task Force Recommendations will spell disaster for this Region – BREEN.

October 27th, 2009 - Pat Breen

Fine Gael’s Deputy Spokesperson on Foreign Affairs and Clare T.D. Pat Breen has today warned the Government that failure to act on the recommendations of their own Task Force will spell disaster for the Mid-West Region.

His comments follow weekend admissions by Denis Brosnan, Chairman of the Mid-West Regional Taskforce which was set up in the wake of the Dell job losses that its work will be a “waste of time” and that the situation here in the Mid-West Region could get worse.

“How many more warnings does this Government need before they are kick started in to action? Unemployment figures are at an all time high and it is not just among multi-nationals that jobs are being evaporated. Numerous small businesses have also being forced to close their doors. Our tourism numbers are continuing to dwindle and there is a serious threat hanging over both Ryanair services and Aer Lingus services at Shannon.”

“This Government needs to act immediately and:

1 Abolish the €10 Air Travel Tax.

2. Fast Track the €23m grant aid from the EGF for the retraining and reskilling of former Dell employees.

3. Ensure that the Region retains Daily US Connectivity.

4. Relax the rules of the Back to Education Allowance to permit people who have run into financial difficulty to return to Education.

5. Reduce the 13.5% VAT on rate on hotel accommodation and restaurants to 10% to help the sector trade through the recession until 2011.

6. Introduce a PRSI exemption for new staff recruited until 2011.

7. A reduction in local authority rates, a freeze of Government charges and a reducation in energy cost.

8. An end to upward only rent reviews to ensure that businesses can benefit from market rates.

“I forewarned when the Task Force was being set up that it would turn into a talking shop unless the Government acted upon its recommendations. This Government is great at commissioning reports and then leaving them to gather dust on their desks.”
“Unfortunately, we do not have the luxury of sitting and waiting here in the Mid-West Region. The situation here is critical and I will be raising this matter in the Dail next week when I will be demanding both answers and action from Government.”