Tony Gregory – deal or no deal?
Sir, – Harry McGee is wrong to include the 1982 Gregory Deal in his list of political strokes delivered by politicians for their own constituencies (“‘Stroke politics’: from disappearing trees to a non-Irish Gaeltacht”, Analysis, September 29th).
While it did include major investments in Dublin Central, it was also more importantly a radical political programme of national significance and a progressive programme for government.
The Gregory Deal included such measures as a tax on derelict sites, citywide housing initiatives, increased taxation and regulation of banking and financial institutions, taxes on profits from sales of land and buildings, a major reform of social welfare , the establishment of a National Council for Children, a new children’s Bill, community development, and many more health, educational, and environmental initiatives.
Again, unlike the strokes Harry McGee mentions, there was an openness and transparency about the Gregory Deal, with the final document made public as soon as it was agreed.
It should not be compared to the strokes of 1997 and 2007.
The late Tony Gregory always saw it as a programme and not a deal. – Yours, etc,