22 June 2017
By Tom Collins
Green Party in Cork said today that the Government must end its hands-off approach to building regulation, following Taoiseach Leo Varadkar’s first Dáil defeat on the Green Party’s motion on building standards and regulation.
Speaking this evening, Lorna Bogue, the Green Party representative for Cork South Central, challenged Simon Coveney to use his influence to make sure the motion isn’t ignored:
“A report was commissioned 15 months ago into a blaze at the Millfield Manor housing estate that destroyed 6 houses in less than 30 minutes. This report was shelved by the then Minister for housing Simon Coveney. It’s finally time for the Government to get tough. Especially given deeply concerning revelations from journalist Philip Boucher-Hayes that fire services in Cork appear to be inadequate due to cuts.”
“The Government has a strong mandate now to tackle shoddy developers and cowboy builders. They must not ignore this. They must not put appeasement of the construction industry above the safety of our citizens and I am calling on Simon Coveney as former minister for housing to ensure that this happens.”
Ms Bogue’s comments echoed those made by Green Party Deputy Leader, Catherine Martin, following the vote in the Dáil:
“The message from the Dáil is clear – the Government must end their hands-off approach to building regulation. They must put in place a strong, independent regulator – an Irish Building Authority, and abandon plans to allow the construction sector to continue regulating themselves. They must develop remediation mechanisms for homeowners who have been left to pick up the pieces of substandard building practices, while cowboy developers get off scot-free.”