July 2014 meeting with Cork County Council

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Last Tuesday, Cobh Tidy Towns chairman Hendrick Verwey and Jim O’Rourke met with Gerard O’Hora Senior Executive Engineer, Roads Operations, Cork County Council to discuss litter control, emptying of litter bins, care of floral displays and cutting of grass in public areas in Cobh. All four Cobh based councillors were present as were Páraig Lynch, Derry Allister and Robert O’Sullivan from Cork County Council.
Cobh Tidy Towns outlined how it felt that these services had “fallen apart” in Cobh in the last 2 weeks of June and early July. In response Gerard O’ Hora stated how the Cobh Municipal District has a population of 60,000 and covers a vast area with many seasonal road repairs to be carried out. There is an outdoor staff of twenty for the entire district.
In relation to the Cobh issues his response was as follows:
There are approx 100 public litter bins located in Cobh. These bins are emptied by CCC staff on Monday, Wednesday and Friday of each week. There are two CCC staff picking litter every day around the town, a general litter pick each morning along the main streets and if any bins are full, then local staff empty the bin.
Four staff members work two hours every Saturday and Sunday picking litter around Cobh and empty the public litter bins if necessary.
One CCC staff member is assigned to grass cutting in Cobh. Grass cutting is routinely rotated among Cobh staff members. No instruction was given to stop grass cutting in Cobh.
Council flower displays, pots etc in Cobh are watered by CCC staff once a week and twice if necessary
Public bins and grass areas around Cobh are regularly checked by CCC staff. In the last week, he received no complaints from the public on over-flowing litter bins in Cobh.
Cobh Tidy Towns feels that if this schedule and checks are followed in a thorough manner that there should be no issues at all of concern. However in addition to the above we feel that all dog waste bins and cigarette bins need to be emptied every 7 days and a relief driver needs to be available for the tractor mower based in Cobh. Small greens need to be cut every 7 days and no grass should be left uncut for longer than 10 days.
It was made clear that it is the intention of the engineer to reduce dramatically the number of green areas cut by Cork County Council in Cobh and hand responsibility over to the people of Cobh. It is also felt appropriate to remove litter bins that are being illegally used for the disposal of domestic refuse and to remove a sizeable proportion of the existing litter bins in Cobh as there are too many. Before this will happen however there will be a public consultation to draw up a new Litter Management Plan for the Cobh Municipal District.
Cobh Tidy Towns gave the Council officials a four page synopsis of the activities of our volunteers, which we feel are way above and beyond what can reasonably be expected of any voluntary organisation.
Professional and consistently delivered local services are the least that we expect in return for paying Income Taxes, Local Property Tax and the rates paid by businesses. As a result Cobh Tidy Towns is appealing to anyone who considers that a public green area in their locality needs cutting, a litter bin needs to be emptied or who sees illegally dumped rubbish to contact the Cobh office of Cork County Council by email cobhudc@eircom.net or by phone on 021 4811307.
Posted by admin   @   12 July 2014

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