Fianna Fáil TD for Kerry John Brassil says it is deeply disappointing to see Minister Ross continuing to refuse to fund the Tralee – Fenit Greenway project.
Deputy Brassil added that Minister Ross is seemingly eager to use the people of Kerry as part of a PR stunt but is unwilling to actually advance key infrastructure projects for the Kingdom.
Deputy Brassil said, “The Tralee – Fenit Greenway project aims to develop a high quality walking and cycling path between the two towns using the now disused railway track. It’s a fantastic proposal which would allow people to travel over 12km in safety through beautiful countryside. It will be a great amenity for the people of Kerry and would have a huge positive impact on our local tourism industry.
“Unfortunately Minister Ross has refused to fund the project to date. I have raised the issue on a number of occasions with the Minister in the Dáil. I have asked him to set out when exactly he will allocate funding to allow the project to reach completion. He attempted to duck and dive on the issue but following persistent questioning he finally admitted that he has no intention of making funding available for the project. Minister Ross indicated that there are no resources available for the Tralee – Fenit Greenway project. However a week later, at the opening of the Athlone Greenway, he stated that he would look at providing funding to other Greenway projects.
“I think it’s distasteful to see Minister Ross tour Kerry in an attempt to fool people into thinking he is interested in what goes on in peripheral regions such as Kerry. The Minister is seemingly happy to use the people of Kerry for his own electoral purposes, but when push comes to shove he refuses to fund key infrastructure projects in the county. He has spent more time and effort attempting to re-open a Garda station in his own constituency over actually fulfilling his duties as Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport.
“Failure to fund the Tralee – Fenit project is just one example of Minister Ross’s hypocrisy. He has also failed to invest in public transport services in Kerry, he has starved the Local Improvement Scheme of funding which has led to deterioration on our roads and he has so far only provided a pitiful amount of funding to support the Rose of Tralee festival.
“Minister Ross needs to get his priorities straight. The people of Kerry want to see investment in local infrastructure in services. One thing they most definitely are not interested in is a visit by a Minister who brings nothing but empty platitudes with him.”