Kerry TD John Brassil has said that Kerry County Council must turnaround vacant houses far quicker than they have previously being doing.

It has been reported that it takes 42 weeks to renovate a council house, and get it back into the housing stock.

“Dublin City Council can do it in 20 weeks, and in Dun Laoghaire Rathdown County Council, they can do it in 12 weeks,” said the Fianna Fáil TD.

“Kerry County Council must explain why it’s taking over twice as long to renovate a house in Kerry as it does in Dublin.”

“The net effects of this tardiness are families in Kerry waiting longer on the housing list, sometimes living with their parents, or couch surfing with friends.”

“While the average cost of a refurbishment is low, compared to other counties, at €10,521, this delay – over 10 months, is unforgivable with so many people desperately in need of social housing.”

“Is it a case that they don’t have enough staff to respond in a timely matter? Do they need to hire craftspeople, architects or engineers? We learned in Budget 2017 that the operational budgets for local authorities were being cut. This doesn’t bode well for further council housing projects.”

“The Director of Housing Services must urgently address these delays, and ensure that any vacant housing units that require refurbishment are put back into use as quickly as possible,” concluded Brassil.