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Councillors left frustrated as IDA cancel meeting

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Martin Shanahan of IDA Ireland.
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This article originally appeared on ThisIsArdee.ie

Councillors from the Ardee Municipal District were due to meet representatives from IDA Ireland on Monday but the meeting was cancelled by the IDA. The lengthy and drawn out process of setting up another meeting must now be undertaken.

In June, Ardee councillors unanimously backed a motion that an invitation be extended to IDA representatives to come to Ardee and offer an update on plans to bring big business to the town.  The local authority, on behalf of the local councillors, extended the invitation to the IDA but that was turned down with the organisation preferring to ask councillors to come and meet them.

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A meeting that would see all six Ardee Municipal District councillors attend a meeting in the IDA’s Dundalk office at the Finnabair Business Park was arranged for Monday this week but late in the day, the meeting was cancelled by the IDA.

Now, it is likely that councillors will once again ask Louth County Council officials to begin correspondence in relation to setting up a new meeting date. This could delay any such meeting until the New Year. Between the motion to request a meeting with the IDA first being put on the table in June and a meeting being set-up for October, it is a lengthy and slow-moving process.

Speaking at June’s meeting, Sinn Fein councillor Tom Cunningham said, “Border counties fare particularly badly when it comes to Foreign Direct Investment. I want to send a message that Ardee is open for business when it comes to jobs. I want to hear directly from the IDA.”

Cunningham’s Sinn Fein colleague Pearse McGeough described the IDA issue as “one of the most significant motions to come before this committee.” He added, “Ardee has been bypassed. This town has been neglected.”

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