Councillor Damien Ryan

  • Mayo County Councillors have agreed the 2020 Budget, at a third Budget meeting this afternoon.

    There was considerable discussion last week as the council executive sought a 3% increase in rates, while proposing to cut the GMA funding - the General Municipal Allocation - by half in each of the Municipal Districts.

    At today's meeting, councillors agreed to raise rates by 4% next year, but with no increase the following year, while the GMA funding will remain at the same level as this year at €2.1 million, and will be ringfenced for both 2020 and 2021.

    Ballinrobe-based Councillor Damien Ryan, the Fianna Fail whip on Mayo County Council, says the 4% increase in rates may be an unpopular move, but - due to changes in the Small Business Support Scheme - 67% of rate payers in the county will not see an increase in their rates bill next year.


  • Funding of 70,000 euro has been secured for flood defence measures in Cong village.

    The news has been confirmed today by local Fianna Fail councillor Damien Ryan.

    He told Midwest News that the funding will be used to erect barriers, a flood protection wall and to raise the road in vulnerable areas of the village.

    The works will get underway by next month, and he said it is an ideal time for such works, as water levels are so low.

  • Traffic lights need to be installed as quickly as possible at two junctions in Ballinrobe, according to local Fianna Fail Councillor Damien Ryan.

    These are among the recommendations in the long-awaited traffic management plan for Ballinrobe, which is now going out for public consultation.

    Councillor Ryan is calling for the immediate installation of traffic lights at the Ulster Bank and at Staunton's Corner, if the public agree with the recommendations in the plan.

  • The failure of the OPW to carry out essential drainage works in south Mayo is adding to flooding concerns this winter. That’s according to Ballinrobe based Fianna Fail councillor Damien Ryan.

    The councillor believes the OPW should come under the responsibility of the local authorities.

    He says he is frustrated with the response by the OPW to flooding problems in south Mayo that could be resolved or alleviated if essential maintenance took place.

    He raised his concerns at this week’s monthly meeting of the Claremorris/ Swinford Municipal District.

    Afterwards he spoke to Midwest News.

  • A Mayo Councillor is calling on the HSE to provide additional short-term parking spaces close to the entrance at Mayo University Hospital.

    At present, there are just a few parking spaces located at the front of the hospital, close to the hospital entrance and Emergency Department entrance, for those dropping off patients.

    Ballinrobe-based Fianna Fail Councillor Damien Ryan has called on the HSE to provide additional parking close to the entrance, and has suggested using a green area at the front of the hospital for this purpose.

    Councillor Ryan raised the issue at this week's meeting of the HSE Regional Forum, where management said they would investigate the possibility of providing more short-term parking at Mayo University Hospital.

  • The battle against illegal drugs should be the number one priority for Gardai in Co Mayo - that's according to Ballinrobe-based Councillor Damien Ryan, who claims towns and villages across Co Mayo are "awash with drugs", and says Garda resources and equipment need to focus on drug detection.

    The issue was debated today's meeting of the Mayo Joint Policing Committee in Castlebar.

    Those in attendance also heard about plans to merge the Mayo Garda Division with Roscommon and Longford, under the restructuring of the force nationwide.

    Councillor Damien Ryan told Midwest News that, while further details still have to be agreed, he's concerned about the geographical spread of the new Garda Division, from Belmullet to Edgeworthstown.



  • A Mayo Councillor is hopeful that realignment work on the R332 Kilmaine to Tuam road will start by the end of this year.

    Realignment works rather than resurfacing works need to take place on the 16 km stretch of road from Kilmaine leading onto the motorway in Tuam, according to Fianna Fail Councillor Damien Ryan.

    This route is a Strategic Road in Co Mayo, which means it's a high priority for funding, and Councillor Ryan is hopeful that, if funding is returned unspent later this year, it could be used to start work on the R332.

  • One of the primary care centres in Mayo is now in private ownership, which has prompted a Ballinrobe-based councillor to raise questions about the ownership of the centres that were built with public funds.

    It’s emerged that investment firm Valley Healthcare has acquired one of the primary care centres in Mayo, but it’s not known which one.

    Valley Healthcare is now in control of four primary care centres – in Mayo, Wickow, Kerry and Cork, and are operating them under a 25-year lease from the HSE.

    The firm aims to take over up to 20 primary care centres nationally over the next 3 years.

    Councillor Damien Ryan, a member of the HSE Regional Forum, is putting down a question for the forum’s next meeting, requesting that the HSE identify the primary care centre in Co Mayo now owned by Valley Healthcare.

    Councillor Ryan says there are concerns about privatising primary care centres, which were built with public monies, and he says there’s some confusion over the ownership of these centres going forward…

  • Minister for Rural and Community Affairs Michael Ring said he was surprised to hear Ballinrobe based Fianna Fail councillor  earlier this week, announce on Midwest News, that the village of Cong had secured 70,000 for flood relief works.

    Minister Ring is questioning where this 70,000 came from and is asking is it additional funding to the 325,000 euro that was already announced last September from the government, under the OPW, for Minor Flood Mitigation Works at Cong and Drumshiel.

    In response Cllr Ryan has stated to Midwest News today that the 70,000 euro is part of the 325,000 euro already announced by the OPW and government, but he said a section of the works is expected to get underway in Cong by next month.

    He said he had been working closely with Mayo county council and the OPW to ensure these particular measures are carried out in the village of Cong.

  • There's some good news for business owners in Co Mayo, as it's been agreed there will be no increase in commercial rates next year.

    In addition, plans by the executive of Mayo County Council to reduce the General Municipal Allocation to councillors has been scrapped, ahead of the council's budget meeting next Monday.

    Mayo County Council's executive had proposed reducing the GMA allocation for each councillor - this is funding councillors allocate to community groups in their individual municipal districts.

    However, following a pre-Budget workshop yesterday, Fianna Fail Councillor Damien Ryan told Midwest News that, after negotiations behind the scenes, the GMA funding will not be cut.


    A new cemetery is to be developed in Ballinrobe.

    At yesterday's meeting of the Claremorris / Swinford Municipal District, Councillors approved the Part 8 planning for the new cemetery to be constructed on the Neale Road.

    Ballinrobe-based Councillor Damien Ryan has welcomed the development, as the present cemetery does not have much additional capacity, and he says a number of conditions were agreed, as part of the planning approval.....