Position on Water Charges

We held an open discussion of water charges at our Monthly meeting in November.

The consensus was that we agreed with the metering of water so that it could be conserved, but did not agree with flat rate water charges.

As a group we were disappointed that metering wasn’t at a more advanced stage, before charges started. It was noted as a failure of building regulations not to anticipate that metering would be needed.

The meeting also noted that the Apartment Owners Network have provided information to the Department of the Environment suggesting that apartments be individually metered for water. Some apartment complexes are already set up for this.

The meeting discussed problems with the water supply, including the issue of quality of water, particularly in apartments, but also problems such as a lack of water pressure.

It was suggested that the government predetermined that water charges would be expensive. irish water may fall foul of an EU regulation (EU water framework directive) – there is also an EU statistical rule that states if an organisation is getting a majority of money from state then the debt of that organisation is added to the national debt – would be a more reasonable pricing scheme if left in councils.

We thought that those People who use more than the average amount are those that should be made pay for water. We would support incentives to encourage people to harvest rain water. Future building regulations need to include systems to use grey water and water butts for the gardens.

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Parking Day 19 September 2014, at Cornmarket, Dublin 8

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We are delighted to take park in Parking Day Dublin 2014.

PARK(ing) Day, an annual worldwide experiment in reclaiming public space, is a simple, fun concept. For a single day, on-street car parking spaces around the city will be transformed into imaginative public spaces for everyone to enjoy. You can find out more at www.dublinparkingday.org .

2014 is Dublin’s fourth PARK(ing) Day. In 2013, Dublin was one of the most creative cities in an event that takes place in hundreds of cities across the globe. This year Dublin PARK(ing) Day is even bigger and more exciting than before.

Artists, designers, urban, environmental and public health activists will create unique installations around the city that will each make its own statement in favour of more people-friendly streets.

PARK(ing) Day is about creating awareness of sustainable travel and the need for better streets and public spaces. Consistently the cities with the most liveable streets are rated as the best cities to live and do business in.

PARK(ing) Day Dublin is an opensource event and is supported by Dublin City Council as part of EU Mobility Week.
Ideas for derelict Dublin

The theme of our “parklet” today is using derelict spaces for the community.

At one end you can see our derelict houses (recycled from old election posters) At the other end we have vegetables and plants from Dublin’s biggest community garden which feeds the Students Union canteen in NCAD.

There are too many derelict spaces around our city – if we had a “Site Valuation Tax” instead of the current local property tax, then it would encourage the developers and others that own these empty building and sites not to leave them empty, as they do at present.

The Green Party Dublin South Central supports calls on the city council to release vacant sites in the city for housing for our rapidly increasing homeless people.

We also call on all vacant sites to be made available for community projects such as parks, community gardens and allotments.

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Don’t spoil your vote

BallotPaper_Ireland sml In every election tally, we see spoiled votes due to similar mistakes.To ensure that your vote doesn’t end up in the doubtful ballots pile:

  • Check that you haven’t skipped a preference or written two of the same preference. (The duplicate or missing preference and everything after it would not count. If you want to give two candidates an equal preference, you can’t.)
  • Each ballot paper is separate, and requires its own first preference, optionally a second preference, and so on. (Don’t write a second preference on one ballot paper that is supposed to follow a first on another.)
  • Write clearly. If your handwriting is difficult to read, a vote is important enough to write slowly and carefully. (In every election, there are ballots where agents can debate what digit a certain mark is. For example a “1” with a serif sometimes looks like a “7”.)
  • Don’t mark an “X” or line, etc. beside the candidates you are not voting for. (Sometimes a line looks like a “1”, or it can be argued that the “X” was intended to be a vote for that candidate, especially if it is not against all candidates that don’t have a valid preference).
  • If you make a mistake in filling in the ballot paper, you can return it to the officials at the table where you got it, and get a new one. (You could cross out everything on it to conceal who you were voting for and ensure that the ballot would not be counted if it ended up in the count in error.) Writing a correction on top of a wrong digit may spoil the vote by making it difficult to read. (Sometimes when a digit is written over another, it is not clear which is the corrected one.)
  • Don’t write anything unnecessary. That includes slogans, political statements, etc. The law is that any superfluous mark spoils the ballot. (A lenient interpretation may be taken, but any word written on a ballot paper (or picture drawn on it!) usually spoils it). Such writing is seen by a few count staff, a few tally people, a few more agents at the adjudication of doubtful ballots, and if they are particularly funny, tallypeople will tell others about them. A comment on a discussion forum (e.g. Boards.ie) would be seen by much more people and is a much more effective political statement. (It might influence someone’s vote.)

You should write nothing but digits.
(A tick or an “X”, while technically wrong, is usually accepted, and treated as a first preference, provided that there is only one of them, and no other markings).

Also, check that your ballot has the official mark stamped on it (the presiding officer stamps it just before giving it to you). Each pin of the stamp must at least make an impression on the paper.

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Sandra Dunne Green Party Candidate in Crumlin Kimmage

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The Dublin South Central branch are delighted to announce that Sandra Dunne has been selected to run as our candidate in the Crumlin Kimmage ward, which includes most of what was previously the South-West Inner City. Sandra lives in Kilmainham.

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Canal Cleanup Group remembering local resident

Our city has many unsung heroes who try to keep our streets clean. Ethna O’Kelly, who passed away last year was one of those heroes who was well known for spending her days picking up litter from the streets of Rialto and Dolphin’s Barn.

The Grand Canal Cleanup Group want to honour Ethna’s memory by planting a tree on a piece of waste ground beside the canal at Dolphin’s Barn Bridge. The planting will take place at 1pm on Sunday 9th February beside the Barn House.

The site chosen was a spot where Ethna used to leave bags of rubbish, out of sight of the street.

The Grand Canal Cleanup group meet monthly on the second Sunday of every month, at the Dolphin’s barn Bridge to pick litter and keep the canal and it’s towpaths tidy for the many people who come here regularly. The group was originally set up in 2010 by members of the Dublin South Central Green Party.

More information: Oisín Ó hAlmhain, 087 1736590 or grandcanalcleanup@gmail.com

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Oisín Ó hAlmhain to run in Ballyfermot-Drimnagh for local elections

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The Green Party have announced that Oisín Ó hAlmhain is to run as their candidate in the Ballyfermot-Drimnagh area for the local elections in 2014.

Oisín is a father of 2 living in the railway estate in Inchicore who has been involved in green issues since 1992 when he and other students there successfully lobbied Trinity College to introduce glass recycling. Other achievements include being a founding member the monthly Dolphin’s Barn Canal cleanup and involvement with the Inchicore on track campaign, and has long been an advocate for buying locally from independent retailers.

Oisin

He is an experienced hospital pharmacist, having worked for over a decade in state hospitals with a brief period spent in a mission hospital in Uganda. Currently he holds the Health spokesperson portfolio for the Green Party.

As a champion of next generation democracy, Oisín is trying to empower residents across the city by promoting the use of sites like www.SeeClickFix.com and www.FixMystreet.ie to get citizens problems solved in a transparent manner.

Oisín stood as the Green Party candidate in Dublin South Central in the 2011general election, achieving the highest vote among Green Party candidates who were not sitting members of the oireachtas.

“I am delighted to be selected as a candidate for this area,” he said. “The can do attitude of people in Inchicore and surrounding areas has struck me since I became a St. Patrick’s athletic season ticket holder with the 500 club 10 years ago. I am looking forward to getting out there and representing people who are empowering themselves to get out and fix Dublin. There are many such people in communities like Drimnagh, Ballyfermot Inchicore and Dublin’s tidy town winners in Chapelizod,”

You can also find Oisín on twitter at @OisinOhAlmhain or Facebook at VoteForOisin.

More information:
Oisín Ó hAlmhain, 087 1736590
Oisin@real-Dublin.ie

Notes for editors:
A more complete biography for Oisín is available from www.real-Dublin.ie

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Green Party calls on supporters to vote NO tomorrow inthe Referendum on the abolition of the Seanad

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The abolition of the Seanad would effectively increase the Dáil’s power by removing scrutiny of bills.
It would also remove democratic safeguards for certain actions that require the approval of both houses, such as impeachment of judges or the president.

The power of the president to refer a bill to the people (currently at the request of the Seanad and one third of the Dáil) would also be removed.

Fine Gael’s claim of savings of €20 million is dishonest, and is apparently their main argument, but even if abolition could save that much, it is a small price for better and less partisan scrutiny of bills.
Their other argument for it is that there would be fewer politicians (as if that is an advantage in itself). This is populism and not a real benefit: The alternative to politicians is dictatorship.

See the full list of changes:
http://referendum2013.ie/Constitution_Before&After_Seanad.pdf

The full Green Party / Comhaontas Glas position is available in English and Irish on www.greenparty.ie

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100 years since the 1913 lockout

A century ago, the brave working people of Dublin took a stand against the exploitation of workers in the city. A century on the biggest threat to our futures is the exploitation of our environment. Is it time to stand up to businesses, and make sure that they are taking care of our resources properly?

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Will the environmentalists of today be seen in the same way as Larkin and Connolly are?

Instead of real action on the environment and energy use, the government have bowed to the William Martin Murphy’s of today and published a weak climate change bill with no targets.

We need to strive to achieve the triple bottom line of Economy, Ecology and Equity, instead of just “adding the half pence to the pence” in the words of Yeats.

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DSC Greens support tomorrow’s (April 25th) Action by Dublin TUI

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Teachers from some of our local colleges are campaigning for better student/ teacher ratios for further education in the city. This September, the Dublin area will lose 45% of the non-pay budget and up to 50 teachers. Our young people deserve better. This Government is creating a scrap heap generation.

Ballyfermot, Inchicore, Crumlin, Liberties, Pearse Colleges of Further Education deliver courses locally and enable the people of Dublin 8 and 12 to get the skills needed to find jobs. The Government appears to want to direct money towards short courses provided by private contractors such as the Springboard and Momentum projects. These projects provide students with no clear pathways to third level education or jobs. Taking the money away from the VECs is unsustainable.

If you would like to join this group of adult education teachers, they will be protesting outside Dáil Éireann on Kildare Street on Thursday 25th April 5:30 – 7:00 pm.

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Croke Park 2: Not a good deal for public servants or the country

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The Green Party has always valued quality of life. The recent proposals for Croke Park II appear to be put forward in budgetary terms only. We very much value the work of front line Gardaí, nurses, teachers and other civil servants, and would be concerned at any measures that might make their lives and work more difficult.

We await any real evidence that this agreement will improve efficiency or performance of the public service, and that it is not merely another stick to beat public servants with.

see the full report at LRC Croke Park 2 agenda

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