Lack of funding for Dún Laoghaire Harbour ‘very disappointing’

Port chief executive says lack of funding ‘will present challenges’ to council

A lack of funding to accompany the transfer of Dún Laoghaire Harbour to the local authority has been described as "very disappointing" by its chief executive, Philomena Poole.

Minister for Transport Shane Ross has said the 200-year-old port will move to the control of Dún Laoghaire-Rathdown County Council on October 3rd, effectively bringing the life of the Dún Laoghaire Harbour Company to a close.

In a letter circulated to councillors, Ms Poole said the transfer would allow for a combined future plan for both the harbour and the town, ensuring each would support the other.

However, it will provide financial challenges for the local authority.

An estimated €33.1 million is required for repair works while ongoing maintenance is likely to cost the local authority €800,000 a year.

In a statement on Thursday welcoming the date for transfer, Ms Poole said: “While it is very disappointing and will present challenges to the council that no funding has been made available to resolve the infrastructure issues, we will work with stakeholders to safeguard a positive, vibrant future for the Harbour and maximise on its heritage and economic potential.”

She told councillors the first month would be spent “gaining an understanding of the operation and the risks attached”, but in the meantime the harbour would continue to run as normal “with all staff in place and continuing to be paid”.

Mark Hilliard

Mark Hilliard

Mark Hilliard is a reporter with The Irish Times