By David Raleigh
Taxpayers are forking out over €1,000 every time an illegally held horse is rounded up and detained in Limerick.
Latest budgetary figures from Limerick City & County Council show that, €483,000 was spent seizing 413 horses last year. Only ten of those horses were reclaimed by their owners and the rest were destroyed.
More than €600,000 has been allocated from this year's council budget to deal with illegally held and wandering horses.
Independent City Councillor and former Mayor, John Gilligan, said hundreds of horses are being kept illegally in the city. He called on the Gardaí and the Department of Agriculture to find a solution to the ongoing problem.
"We're wasting people's money and (we) have been for many years. Quite frankly, I'm sick to death of the whole thing. We spend more time talking about horses than we do about people, and we're getting worse," Mr Gilligan said.
"It's up to the Gardaí or the Department of Agriculture, to come in and take a look at this," Mr Gilligan said.
The former Mayor of Limerick said the notion of implementing a horse project would not solve the problem in Limerick.
"If there is anybody out there who has got ideas about putting in horse projects and things like that - a horse project will take a look at maybe ten (horses), probably a maximum of 20 horses - we are talking about between five and six hundred horses here in Limerick. That's a sop to people out there (and) that is not a solution," he said.