No Sunday funerals in Galway because council lacks funds, Seanad hears

Council needs €2.5 million for essential developments, claims Fidelma Healy-Eames

Fidelma Healy-Eames: ‘appalling’ that people cannot be buried on Sundays. Photograph: Aidan Crawley

Fidelma Healy-Eames: ‘appalling’ that people cannot be buried on Sundays. Photograph: Aidan Crawley

 

Funerals cannot be held in Galway city on Sundays because local authorities cannot afford the premium rates to provide the service, the Seanad has heard.

Independent Fidelma Healy-Eames raised the issue as she expressed concern about the funding model for local authorities.

Ms Healy-Eames said Galway City Council needed to find €2.5 million for essential developments but received only 13 per cent of its funding from the exchequer.

She said it had to raise 87 per cent through commercial rates and the local property tax. The council now had 100 fewer employees, and “a person cannot be buried in Galway city on a Sunday because they do not have enough money to pay the premium rates for Sundays”.

Ms Healy-Eames said: “It is appalling that a person cannot be buried on a Sunday in Galway city because of the lack of human and financial resources.”

Fianna Fáil Seanad leader Darragh O’Brien asked: “If they do it on Monday, is there a problem?”