Dara Calleary

  • Changes in the policing structure, which will see the Mayo Garda division merging with Roscommon & Longford, will be discussed this afternoon at a JPC meeting in Castlebar.

    This is the first meeting of the Joint Policing Committee since the local elections in May, and provides a forum for An Garda Siochana, elected representatives, local authority officials and representatives from community and voluntary sectors to discuss issues around policing and crime.

    Mayo Fianna Fail TD Dara Calleary is also calling for a discussion today in relation to drugs policing across the county.

  • A Mayo TD says the directive issued to Coast Guard members, no longer permitting them to use emergency lights and sirens on vehicles while driving, further demonstrates the need for the Coast Guard to be put on a statutory basis.

    The Fianna Fail Deputy leader Dara Calleary says the Irish Coast Guard is one of Ireland's four principal emergency services, yet it is the only blue light service not covered by Statutory Instrument legislation which ensures standalone status.

    Deputy Calleary says the directive issued to coast guard members no longer permitting them to use emergency lights and sirens has caused concern about potential delays when travelling to incidents.

    He believes the Coast Guard needs to be recognised as a statutory body to ensure investment in stations and to recognise the important service they provide

  • The Health Minister will be questioned in the Dáil today over the delays in proceeding with the extension of the Emergency Department at Mayo University Hospital.

    Fianna Fail’s Deputy leader, Mayo TD Dara Calleary, will question Minister Simon Harris on the issue, saying that even though proposals have been submitted to the HSE, there is no sense of urgency in moving towards construction.

    In the meantime, Deputy Calleary says staff work and patients are treated under intolerable conditions at the Emergency Department in Castlebar, and he’s calling for an urgent response from the Minister and from the HSE.



  • Fianna Fáil has announced a major re-shuffle of its front bench.

    Micheál Martin has appointed Ballina based deputy  Dara Calleary as the deputy leader of the party, a position which had been vacant for years.

    Barry Cowen has been moved to Public Expenditure, with Darragh O'Brien taking the Housing brief.

    Stephen Donnelly has been appointed Health Spokesperson while Billy Kelleher moves to the jobs portfolio.

    Castlebar’s Lisa Chambers is the new spokesperson on Brexit, Niall Collins moves to Foreign Affairs, while Jack Chambers will join the front bench as Spokesperson on Defence.


  • Cabinet Ministers are considering what capital projects to delay to meet the cost of the new National Children's Hospital.

    100 million euro has to be found in this year's budget to make up for overruns on the hospital site.

    50 million needs to come from this year's health budget - and 50 million from other Departments.

    Meanwhile, the Fianna Fail deputy leader, Mayo TD Dara Calleary, is bringing a Private Members Motion before the Dáil this evening, which would require the Comptroller & Auditor General to take control of any public project that's running over-budget.

    Deputy Calleary says his Bill would require the intervention of the Comptroller & Auditor General where projects are set to go 20% over budget.



  • As the controversy continues over Minister Denis Naughten’s communication with a representative of Independent News Media (INM), the deputy leader of Fianna Fail Dara Calleary, says his party is not at this point calling for Minister Naughten to resign.

     It is calling for the Taoiseach Leo Varadkar to explain how he can be “happy” with Minister Naughten’s explanation to the Dail over the matter.

    Denis Naughten has stated that he regrets speaking to a lobbyist for INM in what he has termed a personal capacity about the planned takeover of Celtic Media.

    Oppostion TDs in the Dail today were not accepting that “excuse” as “good enough”.

    Deputy Calleary explained to Midwest News why his party wants accountability from the Taoiseach now

  • Engineering Design Consultants for the long-awaited Ballina Flood Relief Scheme are set to be appointed in January 2020.

    This news has been confirmed this morning by Deputy Leader of Fianna Fáil Dara Calleary.

    The Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform Kevin Boxer Moran has informed the Mayo TD that a tender competition for the procurement of engineering design consultants for the project is underway and it is anticipated that the consultants will be appointed in January 2020.

    Deputy Calleary says the consultants will be responsible for preparing a programme for the implementation of the flood relief scheme and for assessing all viable options to address the flood risk in the Bachelors Walk/Arbuckle Row, Howley Terrace area of the town.

  • The Government must now more than ever seriously examine the proposals put forward by Fianna Fail to allow Credit Unions to provide loans to those wishing to purchase a home.

    Fianna Fail’s Deputy Leader, Mayo TD Dara Calleary says an internal document from the Department of Housing details how further approvals are not currently being issued for the Rebuilding Ireland Home Loan.

    The Housing Minister has confirmed that the scheme will be reopening as soon as possible for the ten local authorities affected, however Deputy Calleary says alternatives must be looked at to prevent this problem from happening again.

  • The family of the young  showjumper from Foxford  who died yesterday from injuries sustained in a road collision last week in Belgium, were remembered at today’s funeral Mass for former Minister and East Mayo TD Sean Calleary this afternoon.

    St Murdeach’s cathedral was packed to capacity, with many mourners standing outside in glorious sunshine for the concelebrated Mass for the late Fianna Fail politician in Ballina.

    The Chief Celebrant, The Bishop of Killala Dr John Fleming spoke of Sean’s 19 years representing the people of his constituency, and described him as a man who was deeply conscious of his role as their representative in Dail Eireann and was also described him as a deeply Christian man

    In a eulogy to his father, deputy Dara Calleary spoke of what a gift Sean was to his family and how lucky they were to have him in their lives – into his 86th year.

    He asked those who prayed for his Dad today to also pray for the family of 25 year old Jack Dodd. Jack passed away yesterday at Maastricht University Hospital.

  • All parks, playgrounds and skate parks in Mayo will be close to public access from today in an effort to promote social distancing during the coronavirus pandemic.

    Mayo County Council made the decision following representations from concerned members of the public; however, forest parks, greenways and other outdoor public places will remain open.

    Mayo Fianna Fail TD Dara Calleary has welcomed the news saying the message of social distancing needs to be reinforced to the general public.

    The Deputy Fianna Fail leader told The Tommy Marren show that social distancing is the biggest weapon to defend ourselves against the virus.

  • A Mayo Fianna Fail TD has accused the Agriculture Minister of abandoning beef farmers as they struggle in the face of plummeting prices.

    Dara Calleary says that since July of this year prices are down by 33% and believes that despite this the Government have turned a blind eye to the hardship many farmers are suffering.

    Deputy Calleary feels farmers are finding it incredibly difficult to remain viable and is urging Minister Creed to take action and examine what supports could be made available to the farmers in most need of assistance.

  • A Mayo Fianna Fail TD has called on the Minister for Agriculture to publish a list of factories which were found to have broken EU carcass trim rules.

    Dara Calleary has made the call after it emerged that a number of fines were imposed on factories which failed to comply with the regulations this year.

    Trimming takes place before the  carcass is weighed, and farmers are paid based on the post-trimmed weight.

    Deputy Calleary says farmers are naturally angry following the news that more than 20 breaches of carcass trim regulations have been uncovered so far this year and they are particularly annoyed with the small penalties which have been imposed by the department.

  • A Mayo Fianna Fail TD is highlighting the massive under-spend in rural schemes, despite a number of announcements in recent weeks of successful projects across Co Mayo.

    While welcoming any funding for Mayo communities, Deputy Dara Calleary says there's often a two year gap between when the announcement is made, and when the money is drawn down, due to difficulty with the co-financing of the project.

    Usually Mayo County Council has to provide a certain percentage of the funding, and it's putting financial pressure on the local authority at a time when they can barely afford essential services like hedge-cutting and repairing pot-holes, according to the Fianna Fail TD.

    He believes the Department of Rural, Community & Gaeltacht Affairs needs to review the model of co-funding, as he says there was an underspend of over €20 million in the Town & Village Renewal Scheme for monies allocated in 2017 and 2018, and -  of the €52 million allocated for 2019 under the Rural Regeneration Scheme - just €14 million has been drawn down - representing a 74% underspend.

  • Mayo Fianna Fail TD Dara Calleary says his party is committed to protecting the future of the CE, RSS and Tús Schemes.

    Fianna Fail is bringing forward a Bill to recognise and support these schemes and ensure they are maintained.

    Deputy Calleary says Fine Gael is pushing its Jobpath activation programme, while attempting to reduce the number of places available on schemes such as Tús. He says this is a retrograde step and threatens communities in Mayo and across the country.

    According to Deputy Calleary, the Fianna Fail Bill will ensure that people will have the option to leave the Jobpath programme if a place on one of the rural or social schemes opens up.

  • A Mayo Fianna Fail TD says it’s now important that the Ballina Digital Hub Project is moved forward quickly as possible.

    Dara Calleary says it is also vital that the provision of adequate Broadband for the entire town and region is kept as a priority issue.

    Deputy Calleary says he is pleased that the Government seems to have finally realised that there is life outside the Pale and more specifically west of the River Shannon.

    He also says that it’s important for Mayo County Council to design the project in a manner that ensures that as many local contractors can qualify to tender to build and develop it.


    A Mayo Fianna Fail TD will launch a new Bill to improve safety on all-terrain vehicles, also known as Quad Bikes.


    Dara Calleary says there are currently no legal rules in place requiring manufacturers or farmers to have roll cages on their quads.


    There are also no health and safety rules requiring the mandatory use of protective headgear.


    Deputy Calleary is bringing forward the Bill following a recent recommendation from the County Coroner in Mayo that anti-roll bars be made compulsory in all quad bikes.


    The All-Terrain Vehicle Safety Bill 2018 will make it mandatory for quad bikes to have anti-roll bars and for users to wear protective headgear.

  • The government says a decision on the future of the National Broadband Plan will be delayed until Easter.

    It received the final tender for the contract in September last year and had said a decision would be made quickly.

    However the deadline has been delayed a number of times as they continue to examine the bid from Granahan McCourt.

    Fianna Fáil Deputy Leader Dara Calleary says there needs to be progress made as soon as possible.

  • Thousands of pensioners are due to receive letters shortly to outline what a review of the changes in rate bands for the State pension will mean for them.

    Earlier this year, Minister Regina Doherty announced a U-turn, after Fianna Fail requested that a punitive change introduced by the previous Fine Gael / Labour Government, which resulted in many women who took time out of the workplace being penalised in their pension entitlements, be reversed.

    The Department has now started sending out letters to pensioners to explain the review process.

    Mayo Fianna Fail TD Dara Calleary has welcomed progress on this matter.

  • The HSE and Department of Health are dragging their heels in relation to the proposed extension of the Emergency Department at Mayo University Hospital – that’s according to Mayo Fianna Fail TD Dara Calleary, who questioned the Health Minister on the issue yesterday.

    Last year, Minister Simon Harris announced that temporary modular units would be installed to relieve overcrowding at a number of hospitals, including Mayo University Hospital, but over a year later, the extra accommodation has not yet been put in place.

    In the meantime, Deputy Calleary says staff and patients are putting up with intolerable conditions at the Emergency Department in Castlebar, and he called for an urgent response from the Minister and from the HSE.

    Minister Harris said yesterday that the HSE Estates team had visited the hospital in Castlebar last week, and there will be further progress from there.

    Deputy Calleary says he will continue to pursue this matter with the Minister until work gets underway on installing the modular units, ahead of next Winter.

  • The Government must intervene urgently in the industrial dispute involving CE scheme supervisors, who are due to begin five days of strike action across the country next Monday.

    That's according to Mayo Fianna Fail TD Dara Calleary, who says such a strike would have a major impact on the operation of Community Employment schemes - including those providing childcare and elderly-care.

    The 1,250 staff involved have no access to an occupational pension scheme  - despite a Labour Court recommendation to that effect in 2008.

    Deputy Dara Calleary is now calling on the Minister for Social Protection Regina Doherty to intervene urgently, and try to resolve the ongoing dispute...