Mayor Mark Ward has been accused of being “disingenuous” after he accused fellow councillors of delaying delivery of social housing.
Following the recent conclusion of the Clonburris An Bord Pleanala Hearing Mayor Ward named local councillors who he said, “bang their chest and announce that they are not against Social Housing but the evidence points to the contrary.”
He also claimed the Independent Councillors named “are in cahoots with Fine Gael in delaying the delivery of Clonburris.”
Now one of those councillors has hit back by strongly refuting Mayor Ward’s accusations.
Independent councillor Francis Timmons told Dublin Gazette that he and his colleagues appeal had nothing to do with reducing social housing.
‘’I found the comments of Mayor Ward very disingenuous,” he said.
“There is a number of issues I want to clarify.
“Firstly, the Mayor was not in An Bord Pleanála when I made my submission if he had have been he would have clearly heard my grounds for appeal.
“The suggestion that I am in cahoots with Fine Gael is laughable, Fine Gael made their own submission which they are entitled to do.
“The suggestion that I did not respect the decision of elected members and I was somehow being undemocratic in appealing this is very disingenuous.
“Appeals to An Bord Pleanála are very much the right of every citizen and I respect peoples democratic right to appeal decisions.
“Is the Mayor suggesting that all the resident’s groups that also appealed had no right to do this?”
The Clonburris SDZ will consist of 8,500 houses, with around 2,700 available for social and affordable housing.
Councillor Timmons also defended his integrity and said he only wants what’s best for the people who will live in the new area.
“I and my colleagues Cllr O Toole, Cllr Gogarty and Cllr O Connell acted at all times in good faith and our appeal was never based on reducing houses or less social housing,” he said.
“I remain one of the few Councillors that has never voted against any housing development and I voted for the Clonburris SDZ not because I felt it is the best plan but because I won’t vote against housing.
“I owe it to the future 20,000 plus people that will live in Clonburris, the 20,000 plus that will live in Adamstown and the current residents of Clondalkin and Lucan that the final SDZ is the best plan possible for everyone.”
The decision of An Bord Pleanala is expected to be announced in the coming months.