Wednesday, April 22, 2009

News.

Donegal B&B bookings are up compared to 2008. But, this doesn't mean more tourists, just that people are opting to stay in B&B's instead of swish hotels:
http://www.highlandradio.com/news.php?articleid=000003835
Bed-and-Breakfasts have experienced a turnaround in the recession according to the Donegal based Town and Country Homes Association.

According the assocations latest report B&B bookings are up more than 20 per cent so far this year.

This is despite an overall drop in the number of tourists visiting Ireland.

Funding for Donegal road maintenance is cut by 10 million, which is approximately a 25% cut:
http://oceanfm.ie/news/2009/04/15/road-allocation-cut-by-10-million/
Funding for local,county and regional roads in Donegal has been cut by 10 million.

Due to Budget cutbacks, local authorities throughout the country will have to slash their road allocations.

Donegal County Council originally had 38 million to develop roads in the county but this has now been reduced to 28 million.

This has lead to a lot of criticism, and concern about jobs. Also, we can probably say goodbye to any major road improvements for the forseeable future, so no dual-carriageway to Dublin.
http://www.highlandradio.com/news.php?articleid=000003844
In February the Transport minister announced funding of 38.3 million euro to Donegal County Council for Regional & Local Roads however that has now been cut to 28.6 million as part of cut backs.

Fianna Fail Councillor Joe Kelly says the move is a major disappointment and has expressed concern that jobs within Donegal County Council will be lost as a result as no termporary contracts will be issued.

And McDonald's Little Athletics Jamboree was recently held in Donegal Town. Is this the same McDonald's that makes us big&fat?
http://www.athleticsireland.ie/content/?p=6589
The Abbey Vocational School, Donegal Town was the venue on Thursday last for the McDonald’s Little Athletics Jamboree. Over 60 young athletes from Rosses, North Leitrim and Tir Chonaill Athletic Clubs, participated in what was a fun-filled and action packed team event.

And teachers are mad, mad, mad, especially ones due to retire soon as the goverment may be going to fu ... tax them an additional 20%, same goes for other civil servants (expect for our great politicans whom I'm sure will still get decent pensions):
http://www.google.com/hostednews/ukpress/article/ALeqM5iuCuakw2g39w-zETb-t4e997MNeg
Angry primary school teachers rounded on the Government claiming they were being hit with pay cuts and tax hikes to bail out bankers and developers.

INTO chief John Carr warned the minister should not underestimate the depth of their anger. He claimed children were being forced to pay for the recklessness and greed of Ireland's "casino capitalists", but Mr O'Keeffe (Education Minister) said more than 610 million euro would be spent on school buildings this year.

And from the Irish Times:
http://www.irishtimes.com/newspaper/ireland/2009/0416/1224244812186.html
“An old man in Donegal once told me that the art of taxation lies in so plucking the goose as to get the largest amount of feathers with the least amount of hissing. Delegates, I don’t have to tell you we are being well and truly plucked, and if we don’t start hissing soon, the few feathers we have left will soon be gone.” – Manus Brennan, executive committee TUI Donegal

And the Hearld reports that teachers are going to "revolt", or at least implement industrial action:
http://www.herald.ie/national-news/chaos-in-schools-as-teachers-plan--cutbacks-revolt-1710528.html
Schools face widespread disruption in September as teacher unions backed a campaign of industrial action against Government cutbacks.

Angry primary and second-level teachers hardened their position on industrial action after another stormy day at teachers' conferences ...

The 800 primary teachers at the INTO conference said it was not their intention to impact directly on teaching and learning, but there will be inevitable side effects to their actions.

They plan to refuse to co-operate with a range of administrative tasks and not to fill in for certain posts left empty by a recruitment embargo.

The INTO unanimously condemned the cap on teacher numbers and the embargo on filling posts, including assistant principal jobs, leaving about 700 promotional posts in primary schools vacant.

My view is that many of the civil servants are getting a raw deal from this, and are worried that the pensions many have worked for over the years will not be there, and that their seeing many new taxes. However, I think they should be very careful how they broach their concerns as many taxpayers may not have much sympathy for them if they (the tax payers) see tax increases as the fault of our teachers, GardaĆ­, and other civil servants. So they should tread very carefully, and remember whom has to foot the bill, and remember that the Government (probably) has better PR (using your tax euros).

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