Dáil still waiting for North-South Interconnector independent reviews – Brendan Smith

– FF motion passed over one year ago and we’re still waiting –

Fianna Fáil TD for Cavan-Monaghan Brendan Smith has expressed his frustration with the Communications Minister for failing to publish two independent reviews into the North-South interconnector.

Last year Fianna Fáil brought forward a motion in the Dáil and the Seanad calling for an independent review to be carried out.  These motions were passed in both Houses but we are still waiting for the reports to be published.

Deputy Brendan Smith commented, “Minister Naughten is blatantly ignoring the will of the Dáil and Seanad in delaying the publication of these reports.  The Minister himself has admitted that “the Consultants undertaking the two studies have finalised their reports”.  If that’s the case, why is there a delay in their publication?

“This government has taken a very hands-off approach to this issue.  Minister Naughten has not met with any of the local action groups since February 2017, and his officials last met them in April last year.  A full 12 months have passed and local communities are extremely angry that no progress on this issue has been made, despite the Dáil and Seanad backing their opposition to the construction of interconnector as it currently stands.

“Fianna Fáil has consistently argued for the undergrounding of this project and the purpose of these independent reviews was to examine all the latest information available.

“Unfortunately, the reviews commissioned by the Minister are not as comprehensive as those required by the Dáil and Seanad.  However, now that they have been completed I am calling on Minister Naughten to publish the findings without delay”.