Offaly politician says government's affordable housing bill abandons rural Ireland

Justin Kelly

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Justin Kelly

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justin.kelly@iconicnews.ie

Offaly politician says government's affordable housing bill abandons rural Ireland

Offaly politician says government's affordable housing bill abandons rural Ireland

Offaly County Councillor and RENUA Ireland leader John Leahy has said the government's new affordable housing bull constitutes 'anti rural apartheid.'

"The scenario where the new Affordable Housing Bill will not apply to rural Ireland is a perfect example of how a cabinet of Dublin 4 dilletantes which sees the country in the manner of tourists, have betrayed rural Ireland again," Leahy said. 

Cllr Leahy was commenting on the revelation that the Affordable Homes Bill will not apply to rural Ireland.

Under the scheme, house-holders with a maximum gross income of less than €50,000 (single applicants) and €75,000 (joint applicants) can purchase homes at an affordable price.

The government has however also said that as "there is an affordability issue in Dublin and the Greater Dublin Area; Galway City; Cork City, we are limiting the funding for infrastructure for affordable housing to these areas."

Commenting on the decision Cllr. Leahy said, "This economic apartheid is another example of how rural Ireland is invisible under this government."

"They appear to think all that rural Ireland is for is afforestation and providing water for Dublin," Leahy fumed.

"Housing availability at an affordable price for working people is a key issue in Offaly and Laois; counties which are essentially now suburbs of Dublin because of the governments failed housing and Transport policies."

"Working people are working people no matter where they live and those who have been serially ignored when it comes to tax cuts and child-care in Laois/Offaly are now being slapped across the face when it comes to the provision of homes for their families," the councillor added.

"Housing is in crisis across rural Ireland. Families are being forced to rent with all the insecurity that brings, and no houses are being built. Increasingly young people find themselves consigned to the limbo of living at home with their parents."

"The people most affected are people who get up early each morning to go to work as nurses, teachers and in industry. The partition of Ireland your government has engaged in is a thoughtless act of bad governance," John blasted.

"This anti rural apartheid over people’s fundamental need for a home is a disgrace. We can only presume it is born out of ignorance and respectfully suggest that the cabinet, perhaps, might consider taking a Grand Tour of the country during their two-month long summer holidays."

"They might learn enough to reverse a decision that goes against logic and fairness," Leahy concluded.

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