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O’Connor enquiry on Halloween Bonfire season costs

Local Councillor Charlie O’Connor has raised the issue of the cost to the Council of dealing with the 2016 Halloween Bonfire Season.

Not only were the local fire brigades put under immense pressure managing a multitude of fires across the area, council crews also spent weeks collecting material intended for bonfires prior to Halloween.

Councillor O Connor raised this matter at the March meeting of the Council and sought answers from Management.

The Council responded to his request with the following report:

“Council crews working over the weekend immediately before 31st October removed a total of 41 tonnes of material which had been stockpiled for bonfires.

“During the two week period prior to Halloween the crews removed a total of 192 tonnes of waste, a large portion of which was stockpiled bonfire material.

“There were 306 Halloween bonfires, 130 on the South Side of the Naas Road and 176 on the North Side.

“The total cost of the cleanup was €121,950 including payroll and waste disposal costs.

“It is not possible to provide a cost breakdown by electoral area.

“Post Halloween, priority is given to the restoration of damage sustained to pitches and areas of high amenity through provision of top soil and grass seed.

“This work will be done in March / April.”

Charlie O’Connor believes these are important issues for communities throughout Tallaght and he says that he now intends to raise them with Council Management ahead of the Halloween Bonfire Season 2017.

He also said there is a clear demand from many community associations in Tallaght that a more effective campaign be waged to prevent illegal bonfires which lead to serious damage to the communities open spaces and put a drain on Council resources.