HOTELIERS CALL FOR SUPPORT: Bernadette Randles previously pictured on the occasion of being elected chair of the Kerry Branch of the Irish Hotels Federation with fellow Kerry hoteliers.
Hotel and guesthouse owners in Kerry and across the country are calling on Paschal Donohue TD, Minister for Finance, and the Government to introduce a series of urgent measures to mitigate the impact of COVID-19 on the economy, including the tourism and hospitality industry.
Over the past few weeks, the industry has been decimated with over 85 percent of hotels closed nationally and the majority of the 260,000 employees laid off or on short-time.
They are calling for a range of measures that will allow businesses to plan now for their recovery including Local Authority rates and water charges to be waived for a minimum period of 12 months; measures to assist with cash flow for businesses facing short term problems and VAT rates to be reduced to zero for a minimum of 12 months and until the industry has recovered, then restored to nine percent on a permanent basis.
Bernadette Randles, Chair of the Kerry branch of the Irish Hotels Federation said that hoteliers appreciated that the country is experiencing the greatest health crisis in living memory and that significant resources are being committed to address the overriding issue of public health.
However, she warned that “every day’s delay in implementing the measures, results in greater risks to our tourism and hospitality industry.
“The health and well-being of all citizens is intertwined with the economy, and people will need livelihoods after the crisis is over. Tourism supports 11 percent of total employment nationally. It is important to note that 70 percent of these jobs are outside of Dublin which highlights its vital role in spreading employment opportunities and prosperity across the entire country. Here in Kerry, tourism supported 15,700 jobs and generated €592m in local revenues before this crisis,” she said.
Ms Randles noted the willingness of hotels to play their part in providing assistance to essential services where required by the HSE and other Government departments. She said that mitigating the impact of COVID-19 must go hand in hand with ensuring that Irish people have a viable economy to return to in the coming months.
“Irish tourism has been a key driver of job growth over the last decade, and it is essential that our industry remains to the fore of the national economic agenda, including in negotiations on the Framework for Government. Whilst discussions are ongoing, further measures are now urgently required to protect tourism livelihoods and address the enormous challenges we face. These challenges are existential for many tourism businesses and of a significantly greater scale than anything experienced during the last financial crisis.”
“At present most of our industry nationally is closed. We are seeking an urgent response to ensure that hotel and guesthouse properties are preserved and ready to scale up when the COVID-19 related restrictions are lifted. Tourism and hospitality businesses are now working to secure the necessary funds to survive and restart.”
Green light for teen accommodation
By Michelle Crean Plans for sheltered accommodation to house homeless teenagers in foster care have been given the go ahead. An Bord Pleanala has approved a three-storey building in Flemings Lane just off High Street, which will have eight bedrooms, two one bedroom apartments and one two bedroom apartment. The teens living within the premises […]
By Michelle Crean
Plans for sheltered accommodation to house homeless teenagers in foster care have been given the go ahead.
An Bord Pleanala has approved a three-storey building in Flemings Lane just off High Street, which will have eight bedrooms, two one bedroom apartments and one two bedroom apartment.
The teens living within the premises will be supervised by applicant Eileen O’Brien who will live on the ground floor of the premises.
The two one-bed apartments on the second floor would either be rented out or used for independent living for the teenagers as they reach adulthood.
The two-bed apartment will be on the third floor. There are also plans for balconies at second and third floor levels.
The proposed apartment building is contemporary in design with a mix of stone and render finish on the lower floors and synthetic burned timber finish on the upper floors. The second floor is recessed at the front and the third floor is recessed at the front and the rear with a decorative feature on the front elevation comprising dark grey timber steel poles. The building will also have a flat roof.
Planning permission was granted subject to 14 conditions including a two-metre high boundary wall to be constructed on south, south-western boundaries of the site and there’s to be no overnight commercial guest accommodation.
Fans return to Fitzgerald Stadium after eight months
By Sean Moriarty Officials from Fitzgerald Stadium remain hopeful that crowd capacity at the venue can be increased to 500 spectators in time for the Munster final on July 25 – subject to both national health guidelines and Kerry qualifying for the game. Last Saturday evening’s National League semi-final between Kerry and Tyrone was the […]
By Sean Moriarty
Officials from Fitzgerald Stadium remain hopeful that crowd capacity at the venue can be increased to 500 spectators in time for the Munster final on July 25 – subject to both national health guidelines and Kerry qualifying for the game.
Last Saturday evening’s National League semi-final between Kerry and Tyrone was the first game at the stadium since the 2020 Kerry Petroleum Intermediate Club Football Championship Quarter-Final when Glenbeigh-Glencar played Beaufort on October 4 last year.
Due to current restrictions only 200 fans were allowed attend Saturday’s big match. That will remain in place for Kerry’s opening Munster Championship tie with Clare on June 26.
“It had been more than eight months since Fitzgerald Stadium welcomed back fans to the venue,” stadium PRO Tatyana McGough told the Killarney Advertiser. “Everything went exceptionally well.”
She is hopeful that more restrictions will be eased on July 5, paving the way for an increase in capacity to 500 fans in time for the July 25 Munster Final.
“It is likely that from July 5 up to 500 spectators may be permitted to attend games. We hope this number will increase for the Munster Final. If it is a Cork versus Kerry Munster Final the game will be fixed for Sunday July 25 at 4pm in the Fitzgerald Stadium. The stadium’s staff are very confident in being able to host any number of fans that may be allowed.”
Garda appeal to park legally at beaches and public amenities
An Garda Siochana is appealing to the public to park legally in designated car parks and spaces when visiting beaches, beauty spots and other public amenities.
The good weather has seen an increase in dangerous illegal parking at these locations across the country in recent weeks. An Garda Siochana wants people to enjoy the summer but do so safely.
Parking illegally can lead to unnecessary risk and dangers such as pedestrians being forced to walk along dangerous roads. It can also prevent emergency services from gaining access to these amenities a seaside locations which could lead to the loss of life.
“We encourage the public to plan their journeys and think safety first when parking your vehicle,” the Gardai said in a statement.
“The outcome of parking illegally could be far more serious than a FCPN or vehicle towing and puts others and your own life at risk.
An Garda Siochana reminds and encourages the public to social distance and follow public health guidelines when attending these locations this Summer.
An Garda Siochana is also supporting National Water Safety Awareness Week (June 14th – 20th). Information on this campaign and general water safety can be found on Water Safety Irelands Website – www.watersafety.ie/national-water-safety-awareness-week/
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