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Economic mismanagement by Government 'will halt vital Capital Projects' – Jonathan O’Brien TD

24 January, 2019 - by Jonathan O'Brien TD

Sinn Féin’s deputy spokesperson for Public Expenditure & Reform, Jonathan O’Brien TD, has warned that the government’s mismanagement of public funds and the economy is on course to halt vital capital projects in health, education and transport.

Speaking today, the Cork North-Central TD said:

“The National Development Plan and Project 2040 were advertised by the government with much fanfare.

"They claimed to offer a solution to the decade of under-investment in vital infrastructure that has contributed towards a two-tier recovery.

“As we have repeatedly argued, that plan was wholly inadequate to tackle the crisis faced in housing and to address the regional inequalities that have deepened since the crash and left too many communities behind.

“Despite its lack of ambition, it is now clear that this government is on course to fall short of its own promises and policies.

“A combination of flawed economic policies and mismanagement of the public finances are set to put a halt to vital capital projects in health, education and transport, not to mention the National Broadband Plan.

“We learnt this week that the spiralling costs of the National Children’s Hospital will remove half a billion euros of funding from vital projects that were due to commence in the coming years.

"We are now waiting to find out whether such vital projects as the National Radiation Oncology Programme in Cork or ward upgrades in Cavan are to be stalled or deferred.

“Mismanagement in the Departments of Health and Public Expenditure now threaten the delivery of vital capital projects that our health service across the State so desperately needs.

“This mismanagement has now been compounded by an admission by Minister for Finance, Paschal Donohoe, that a lack of skilled workers threatens the delivery of capital projects and could lead to further spiralling costs.

“Due to this government’s refusal to invest adequately in apprenticeships, together with its inability to reign in a commercial property boom that has echoes of the past, key infrastructure projects are at serious risk.

“This cocktail of political failure could result in communities failing to see key projects.

“The government must come clean with an updated timetable of capital projects that are now at risk of being delayed.”

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