The meeting follows the decision by Cork City Council to approve the first phase of the OPW flood defences at Morrison’s Island. The project received 1,400 submissions from the public.
The Green Party says the decision is an example of the take-it-or-leave-it attitude of national government to local planning, which leaves city councillors with little choice other than to either accept the plans of State agencies or go without.
The meeting will include speakers from the Save Cork City campaign. The Green Party’s representative in Cork South Central, Lorna Bogue, said the title was a “cheeky” one, but that the subject was very serious.
Following on from the council decision to grant permission to the Morrison’s Island project, we’ve decided to host a town hall meeting, cheekily titled ‘End Dublin Rule in Cork’,” said Ms Bogue.
“The point of the meeting is that, time and time again, I have seen councillors reluctantly agreeing to projects they themselves wouldn’t agree to. There is a reason why they are doing this. The reason is that local government in Cork is structurally underfunded and Cork is left with planning decisions that local people themselves would not have made.”
Ms Bogue said the effect of national control of local decision-making was wide-ranging.
“We see this in housing, we see this with roads, and now we are seeing it with the Lower Lee Flood Relief Scheme,” she said. “What I would like to get out of this meeting is for people to air their views, but I have also invited councillors and I think it is important that councillors know that, on this issue, they have the popular support to stand up to the State.”
“It’s time to change the narrative. There is always a choice in council decisions. At the moment, that choice is framed as being between what national government says or nothing. It’s time to change that narrative.”
The meeting is in the Bodega, Cornmarket St, Cork, at 7pm on Thursday.