Longford/Westmeath TD, Gabrielle McFadden, has welcomed yesterday’s meeting between the Minister for Agriculture, Simon Coveney and representatives of the Irish beef processing industry to discuss the ongoing crisis in the sector.
“I’m pleased processors are now open to showing further flexibility on weight specifications following Tuesday’s talks with Minister Coveney.
“As all stakeholders know, cattle prices have collapsed in recent months, putting a huge strain on farmers’ incomes.
“Clearly, urgent measures such as this flexibility on weight specifications must happen in order to stem the crisis and bolster the industry.
“The other area that still also needs to be actively progressed is the removal of roadblocks in the re-opening of cross-border live trade in Northern Ireland.”
Fine Gael Deputy for Longford-Westmeath, Gabriel McFadden, has warmly welcomed the start of work on the Athlone-Mullingar cycleway. Work on the project formally commenced today, Monday, September 1st.
“I have been informed by Westmeath County Council that preparatory work, involving the removal of vegetation on the 40 kilometre route, commenced today. (Monday)
“I understand this vegetation clearance will take a number of months to complete after which the cycleway itself will be installed. This will involve putting down a tarred surface.
“Last May, the Government allocated €4m to develop this cycle route, which will be of major benefit to local economies in Athlone and Mullingar and the areas in between.
“I have constantly highlighted the massive tourism potential of national walking and cycling networks. This leisure market is a key target area for this Government in terms of creating jobs in the regions and I would like to applaud the Government for ensuring the funding has been provided for what will be a key tourism product for the region.
“This project is part of a planned national cycleway from Dublin to Galway and currently, this Athlone-Mullingar section is the longest stretch of cycleway being developed in the country.
“This section will finish at Garrycastle while progress is continuing on developing the Athlone-Galway section of the national route. This includes looking at erecting a brand new town bridge in Athlone as part of an Environmental Impact Assessment.
“Once again, I would like to complement Westmeath County Council and all the stakeholders in this project who are being justly rewarded for their efforts in expediting the initial plans for the Mullingar-Athlone section of the national route.”
Fine Gael TD for Longford/Westmeath, Gabrielle McFadden, has said that today’s official opening of RTE’s new Midlands Regional Studio at Athlone Institute of Technology was a clear endorsement of the national broadcaster’s commitment to its news and programming output in the Midlands. The official opening was performed by Minister for Foreign Affairs and Trade, Charlie Flanagan.
“The relocation of the Midlands studio from its former offices at St Mary’s Square to a state-of-the-art facility in AIT is a big vote of confidence by RTE in Athlone and the wider Midlands region. I also want to compliment AIT President Ciarán Ó Catháin and all those at the college who have ensured this partnership has taken place, which will allow a mutual sharing of knowledge and facilities.
“Back in 2012 when RTÉ announced it was restructuring its regional operations, there were understandable concerns and much uncertainty locally. However, RTE’s decision to sign partnership agreements with Institutes of Technologies, including AIT, to provide TV and Radio facilities was met with welcome relief all round.
“Today is also a very nostalgic one for all those associated over the years with the old offices at St Mary’s Square, which had been home to the Midland operations for twenty five years.
“In that time, three excellent regional correspondents have been based there, including the incumbent Ciarán Mullooly who has been in situ for the last eighteen years. I would like to wish Ciarán and his staff colleagues, Anne Brennan and Paula Reid, continued success.
“The new digital studio, which boasts 5 joint TV and radio points, offers much promise and potential in terms of additional programming and I look forward to RTE’s increased output from the Midlands.”