The contentious issue of whether or not cars should be allowed park on Bettystown beach, at the moment the Council has banned them from the strand, that has divided the Fine Gael reps in the area, Sharon Tolan wants the ban to continue , while Paddy Meade is opposed to it, will not go away just yet according to the Lobinstown based Meade.
He told Meath Live, ‘We must remember the reason the council says they closed the beach was because of covid and that they are going to review it in March when perhaps the covid situation has changed.
‘In a debate facts are very important, in the debates to date a lot of opinions that looked like facts sadly were perhaps not.
‘For instance it was claimed business is up between 40 to 44 percent since the beach was closed. – How was this claim allowed not to be questioned. As from talking to Boshelsm O’Reilly, Relish and the Neptune Hotel I was informed the closure has had a serious negative impact on business.
‘Every week disabled people contact me upset that they can’t use the beach anymore, how can they be simply given up on.
‘There has been a lot of interaction online over this and I see people in favour and people against put strong opinions across but then slag off the other side on occasion and for me this is not right.
‘It does appear to be that they are just listening to people with the same mindset as themselves, surely there is a good compromise to be reached here, for instance, it has to be possible leave Mornington car free so anyone who wants a car free beach can go there, but Bettystown and part of Laytown should open.
‘I hope between now March people open there eyes to looking at both sides. It says little for local democracy when these decisions are been made by full council and not by the local councillors in their districts.
‘In the Laytown-Bettystown case, it appears the majority of local councillors want it open so that should be allowed. This undermining of our districts wishes are upsetting to many and yes the fact that fellow Fine Gael colleagues, who were present, voted against my recent motion is personally upsetting not only to me but to so many residents, disabled individuals and the business community that on other days they claim to represent’.