Welcome to The Lowdown. This is LouthNow.ie’s afternoon bulletin, brought to you in association with McGoey’s Pharmacy. Every weekday evening, we will bring you what you need to know for the day ahead in a digestible, quick read so you can get on with your day.
/ONE The Taoiseach Leo Varadkar – fresh from his Virgin Media Television debate with Micheal Martin on Wednesday night – confirmed today that he will attend the Stronger Together rally against violence in Drogheda on Saturday. Speaking to the media, he said his office were liaising with Mayor Paul Bell as to the arrangements, citing his want for not making the event a political one.
“I do intend to be there. My office is in contact with the Mayor of Drogheda on the arrangements. I do want to be there to stand shoulder to shoulder with the people of Drogheda, but I don’t want to politicise the event in any way either. We want to make sure we have the arrangements right,” he said.
As much as he might want that, it may turn into one. Fianna Fail Justice spokesperson Jim O’Callaghan, Sinn Fein President Mary Lou McDonald, Labour Brendan Howlin and Aontu leader Peadar Toibin will also be there, as will most if not all of the Louth general election candidates.
Read the full story here: Taoiseach, McDonald and Howlin to attend Standing Together rally in Drogheda
/TWO The wait for the new Ardee Educate Together school building goes on. Speaking to our editor Barry Landy in 2018, principal Ann Middleton said she hoped to be in the new building on the Kells Road at some point in the 2019/20 academic year. That’s this one – ending this coming June. As of today, not one brick has been laid.
We reported today that Stage 2B design was completed last year and contract documents were issued to the Department for approval late last year. When that arrives, the project can go to tender where contractors can bid for the work.
With all that pre-shovel work administration to do, Louth County Council have not outlined a time frame for when building can start.
Read the full story here: No time frame for Ardee Educate Together build to commence
/THREE There’s lost of ‘days’ these days. If that makes sense. Every day seems to be celebrating something or other. National This Day, or National ‘That’ Day. An Garda Siochana have got in on the act today with the announcement of National Community Engagement Day.
Local Gardai will hold ‘meet-and-greet sessions with local communities in six different areas across Louth next Friday as part of their National Community Engagement Day. In Louth, sessions will be held in Ardee, Cooley, Kilcurry, Knockbridge, Termonfeckin and Tullyallen.
Read the full story here: Gardai to meet the community in six Louth locations next week
/FOUR The Irish Independent reported today that up to 40 of the main protagonists in the deadly Drogheda feud, including some women and children, have “gone to ground” in recent days fearing that they will be shot or arrested.
The paper also reported that a high-level meeting involving senior officers from many of the Garda’s specialist units took place on Monday and a “strategy” for tackling the feuding gangs “head-on” was discussed.
Senior officers from the Criminal Assets Bureau (CAB), National Bureau of Criminal Investigation (NBCI) and the Drugs and Organised Crime Bureau (DOCB) were in attendance. It says that a major clampdown on the rival gangs in Drogheda, and in Meath and north Dublin where the feud has extended to, is on the way.
Read the full story here: Forty people with links to Drogheda feud gang ‘gone to ground’
/FIVE Dundalk Municipal District councillor Conor Keelan has called on Louth County Council to work with Irish Water to introduce a grant scheme for homes and businesses who install a rainwater harvesting system.
A number of other local authorities nationwide are currently trialing the grant scheme and Cllr Keelan wants something similar done in Louth. “The grant could be used for a reduction in the price of a new connection or indeed a credit on metering,” he said.
Read the full story here: Louth should adopt rainwater harvesting grant scheme, says Cllr Keelan