McGreevy gets assurances over Rostrevor flooding fiasco

Newry Times News Posted by
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Wednesday, April 24th, 2013
Community

A joint pledge has been given by the Rivers Agency and NI Water that nothing will be allowed to hold up the implementation of a £400,000 flood alleviation scheme designed to protect residents of Rostrevor’s St. Jude’s and St. Colman’s Gardens.

The promise was made to SDLP Councillor Connaire McGreevy after he revealed two weeks ago that NI Water had prioritised the Rostrevor area for vital flood defensive work.

But Councillor McGreevy has demanded that the proposed completion date of “early 2014” is arrived at sooner.

“That is far too vague a promise. It allows the statutory bodies a convenient escape clause at the risk of exposing the people of Rostrevor to another cycle of autumn and winter flooding pain. That is unacceptable and I will be seeking an assurance that won’t happen,” he said.

Councillor McGreevy said he has no regrets about his comments regarding the level of emergency response from NI Water to the recent flood disaster.

“The SDLP described the response as a joke. It was one built around providing a bucket and mop and sandbags for people at their wits end. In the 21st century this response is totally unacceptable. Therefore I am absolutely delighted that the tough criticism from the SDLP was a key catalyst in propelling this crucial project forward.

“And while we will continue to fight for proper compensation for those that have had their homes ruined yet again, the positive thing to come out of the misery they have suffered is that the authorities have, at last, been forced to act.

“The fact that both organisations have come together to work on a joint initiative after more than five years of broken promises is something that has to be welcomed. The point I made last Thursday at a meeting of the Rivers Agency Board was that there needed to be a joined up approach.

“For far too long there has been an attitude that the problem of flooding in Rostrevor was the responsibility of somebody else.

McGreevy added, “The agencies at the centre of the flooding fiasco have a duty of care to those individuals and families that have had their health, both in the short and longer term, put at risk because of their repeated failures to control the flooding damage in Rostrevor.”


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