Puckaun asylum plans not proceeding

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Plans to house up to 70 asylum seekers in the village of Puckaun will not be going ahead.

Locals had expressed concerns about such a large influx into the area which has a population of just 220.

Double Property Group was behind the plans to house the asylum seekers in holiday cottages.

Deputy Alan Kelly had arranged a meeting between residents from Puckaun Minister Roderic O’Gorman which was due to take place this evening.

However he says there’s been a change of plans.

“The company who were going to buy those houses are no longer proceeding.

“Obviously there were discussions in relation to this and the Department have now informed me that there are no plans now to proceed with putting asylum seekers in Puckaun.

“I had emphasised to Minister O’Gorman that while everybody has to play their part – and Tipperary was no different – like we have done across the county, there was an issue with approximately 70 people coming into an area which has approximately 220 residents.”

Deputy Kelly says while the plans have been halted lessons need to be learned to ensure suitable locations are selected in future.

“The school is full, there are little or no transport links, health facilities. There would also be issues with translation services and a number of other issues.

“I think it’s important that lessons are learned from this. I questioned his officials in the Public Accounts Committee a couple of weeks ago on it and I think there needs to be some criteria set and a lot more planning put in place in relation to the selection of sites as they come forward.”