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No cash, but councillors get free bus to Clontarf

CASH-strapped Dublin City Council is to pay for a private bus to get councillors from the city centre to Clontarf -- a journey of 5km.

Despite massive budget cutbacks the council has offered public representatives a bus service to see the proposed route of the controversial Clontarf flood wall.

The Herald can reveal that council management emailed all city representatives to offer them a free bus tour.

One city bus company quoted the Herald a charge of €100 for a similar journey.

The offer has left a number of councillors gobsmacked that council management would deem it necessary to fork out on a private bus service.

Taxpayers will foot the bill for the bus service, despite councillors claiming thousands of euro each year in travel expenses.


In the email, councillors were told that they would be picked up from council offices on Wood Quay on Thursday afternoon before being brought up to Clontarf.

The email stated: "The bus tour will first take you to Clontarf Road showing the areas where the proposed flood defences will be constructed, and then on to Clontarf Castle to view the graphic display on the proposed scheme and to see how the Information Sessions are being conducted."

However the organising of a bus service has angered a number of councillors who claim it represents a waste of money.

Independent councillor Damian O'Farrell told the Herald that management should withdraw the offer immediately.

"I live in the area and work in the city so I could of course avail of the bus service but I won't be as I believe it is a complete waste of taxpayers' money. Why not encourage councillors to go to the information meetings organised for the public so that they can engage about the project in question.

"There seems to be no end to the money that the council will waste on this project."

And Independent councillor Nial Ring told the Herald that the money could be better spent. "There's a community centre in North Wall that was vandalised which could do a lot with that money. It really isn't necessary to organise a bus service," he said.

"It is now up to the 52 city councillors to either support this act of national sabotage or send the planners back to the drawing board.

A spokesperson for Dublin City Council said: "The short bus tour for councillors was arranged to brief them on the proposed defences."