The Mayor of Clare insists the transition of Shannon Heritage sites to Clare County Council can’t become a financial burden for the public.
At this month’s meeting of local representatives, Chief Executive of the Council, Pat Dowling, explained that it would cost 20% of their total budget to take over the management of the sites.
Clare councillors heard this week that a once-off subvention from government would be sufficient to fund the initial transfer of Bunratty Castle & Folk Park, Knappogue Castle and Craggaunowen to the local authority.
CEO of Clare County Council, Pat Dowling, told this month’s council meeting it’s envisaged that revenue from the sites would cover their running cost after this as pre-pandemic tourist levels return.
However, with projections that 20% of the council’s budget would have to be spent if government were not to fund the initial takeover, this has raised concerns in some quarters.
Cathaoirleach of Clare County Council and Independent Councillor from Shannon, PJ Ryan, is adamant that the financing of the tourism sites can’t become a burden for the people of Clare.
The Mayor’s concerns were echoed by North Clare Councillor, Joe Garrihy.
The Lisdoonvarna native is calling on the government to introduce safeguarding measures to ensure that Clare County Council’s absorption of Shannon Heritage sites doesn’t negatively impact the financing of other vital projects in the county.
The Fine Gael Councillor is seeking a commitment from the government to underpin the transition of the sites to Clare County Council on a permanent basis.