THE number of trees falling during storms needs to be addressed by the Government.
So says Fianna Fáil Cllr Seamus Kilgannon who proposed the Council should call on the Minister for Local Government to set up a national fund to help deal with overgrow hedges and over hanging trees on primary and secondary roads as they were “a real danger during very stormy weather.”
“It’s becoming a very serious issue nationally where trees are falling, roads are blocked, children can’t get to school,” he told the meeting.
“There is a duty on the Government - they need to be removed if they’re dangerous,” he said.
Cllr Henry said a lot of fallen trees came from Spruce trees in forestry plantations near roads.
Fianna Fáil Cllr Paul Taylor said the biggest concern was for buses of schoolchildren in storms: “When it’s a danger to our children it’s a very serious issue.”
Cllrs Margaret Gormley, Sinead Maguire and Joe Queenan all supported the motion.
Earlier, Fianna Fáil Cllr Keith Henry asked the Council to consider bringing in a hedge cutting grant similar to those in other local authorities.
“Whatever hedges are left after Storm Ali, now is the time for them to be cut. Even if a grant was ¤30 per km it would go some way,” he said.
Director of Services Tom Kilfeather said the Council could trial a pilot hedge cutting grant for facing hedges along public roads, like Leitrim County Council.
He said this could be advertised once funding has been allocated in the Council’s 2019 budget.