– Bill needed to make Fingal Co Co competent authority stalled as Ross meddles with Judicial Appointments Bill –
Fianna Fáil Spokesperson on Transport, Robert Troy has said that the Government’s supposed prioritisation of the 2nd runway at Dublin Airport doesn’t stack up as legislation needed to deliver it isn’t being progressed by Minister Shane Ross.
Deputy Troy was commenting as the Dublin Airport Authority announced that this coming weekend is one of the busiest of the year with passenger numbers exceeding Easter 2017’s figures by 15%.
“The Minister for Transport, Shane Ross has been claiming the second runway is a priority for the Government since his appointment in May 2016.
“From what I can see, no progress is being made on this bill, yet the Minister can find time to meddle in the Justice Department once again.
“Minister Ross wasted 18 months while he procrastinated over the appointment of the Irish Aviation Authority as the competent authority, before being instructed by the Attorney General’s office that there would be a conflict of interest.
“On Thursday, when I questioned the Tánaiste on the progress of the legislation needed to make Fingal County Council the competent authority, he couldn’t give me an indication as to when it would be introduced and passed by the Oireachtas.
“This legislation is a crucial component needed to allow for the construction and operation of a 2nd runway at the airport. While I have concerns about the ability of Fingal County Council to perform this role, too much time has been wasted, and it’s time to move on and deliver the runway.
“Dublin Airport is one of the most important pieces of national transport infrastructure in the State. It is of strategic importance for the entire country.
“The airport is already operating at full capacity and a 2nd runway is desperately needed to allow for route, connectivity and passenger growth.
“Shane Ross would be better off focusing on legislation directly relating to his own role as Minister for Transport rather than meddling with and pushing legislation in other government departments.
“Minister Ross’s failure to properly, and efficiently, legislate for this project is jeopardising our country’s economic prosperity. He needs publish the draft legislation as quickly as possible to ensure a detailed debate takes place and robust legislation is passed to ensure independence,” concluded Troy.