‘Gobsmacked’ over RAS revelation

CHAIRPERSON of Tullamore Town Council Molly Buckley said there is a misunderstanding about Rental Accommodation Schemes which needs to be cleared up.

CHAIRPERSON of Tullamore Town Council Molly Buckley said there is a misunderstanding about Rental Accommodation Schemes which needs to be cleared up.

“I would have encouraged people to enter into these schemes saying they would be staying on the housing list and would still be considered for housing,” he said. However, this is not the case as those in RAS are considered to be adequately housed.

“I want people to know they will not get a local authority house. Unless their family circumstances change they haven’t a chance. This needs to be very clear,” she said.

Cllr Sinead Dooley said she was ‘gobsmacked’ to learn this at last week’s meeting of Offaly County Council. She said she also would have asked people to avail of it, with her understanding being that people wouldn’t lose their place on the list. “I hate to think people thought I knowingly gave them misinformation. Can we go back and revisit it?” she asked, saying it would be hard to get people to go on it.

Cllr Brendan Killeavy said it was unfair to these people to have to leave the housing waiting list to avail of the scheme.

Cllr Tommy McKeigue said they needed to get a copy of the plan adopted by Offaly County Council.

Cllr Declan Harvey said he had also encouraged people to avail of the scheme.

Gabriel Conlon told members that more discussion would be taking place on the matter at SPC level. He said it was unlikely that Tullamore Town Council would make making any acquisitions in the near future and said there were no plans to do so up to 2013.

He said there were no regulations being introduced at every level and said the matter should be left until the June meeting to discuss it in more detail.