Northside of city to be surveyed as an area for litter league

Northside of city to be surveyed as an area for litter league
Litter at a Bus Stop on Knockpoge Avenue.

THE entire north side of Cork city is set to be surveyed for litter as part of the next Irish Business Against Litter (IBAL) report.

An Taisce will now survey the northside of the city as a whole, rather than singling out individual areas as it had in previous surveys.

It follows extensive campaigning by residents and elected representatives in Farranree who had called for the area to be removed from the survey after it was labelled a blackspot on a number of occasions.

Sinn Féin councillor and Farranree resident Kenneth Collins had made several calls for Farranree's removal, claiming that it was unfair to measure a small residential area in a city against large tourist towns such as Killarney and Kilkenny which have dedicated cleaning budgets.

He is not happy with the proposed change.

"My motion called for the removal of Farranree entirely, not the addition of the whole area," he said.

"I don't think this new option is a good solution. Farranree is still going to be tarnished and other areas on the northside will get a bad name too.

"It's as simple as this: Cork City Council does not have the funding necessary for its cleansing budget. It is largely concentrated in the city centre and the city centre is spotless because of it.

"But we don't have the budget for much more than that because of government budget cuts. What are we supposed to do? Take the cleansing out of the city and leave that in a mess?"

The community in Farranree rallied together in the wake of previous surveys.

An environmental committee was established and regular clean-ups are carried out by residents and community representatives.

Members of IBAL have since appeared before the city council in recent months to face questioning over the surveys, with elected members complaining that the scoring system and the comparison of inner city areas with tourist towns was unfair.

Mr Collins said the matter will be discussed by Cork City Council at a meeting of the city's environmental directorate on Monday.

"I will be calling on the director to sternly reject this proposal by An Taisce and IBAL because this isn't on at all."

In contrast, Blackpool councillor Kenneth O'Flynn has welcomed the changes.

Mr O'Flynn said that the communities in the area have worked hard to combat litter.

"I believe that this will show the city in a good light," he said.

"I am delighted they are not looking at one particular area like Farranree. It was unfair and one-sided. Our community's involvement in the clean ups has to be applauded. We have been working hard and it is paying off."

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