Blog Archives

Make Saving Lives On Our Roads A New Year Resolution Says Durkan

Environment Minister Mark H Durkan has urged everyone to take personal responsibility as they use the roads. Mr Durkan made his comments as he reflected on the loss of life on Northern Ireland’s roads in 2015. “As the year drew to a close, we remember that 74 people have lost…

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Emergency Payment Scheme For Flooding In Place Says Durkan

Following the recent heavy rainfall, Environment Minister Mark H Durkan has issued a reminder that an emergency scheme for householders affected by related flooding has been activated. Mark H Durkan said: “Following recent incidents of flooding, individual householders who have suffered severe inconvenience can claim £1,000 payment from their local…

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Grant Funding Information For Local Rural Community Groups

O’Neill urges rural communities not to miss out on Rural Micro Grant Programme Rural Development Minister Michelle O’Neill has urged rural community groups to apply now for their share of the Rural Micro Capital Grant Programme, with over £200,000 available. The Minister was speaking as she announced the opening of…

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Strangford Lough And Lecale Partnership To Benefit From DOE Funding

Environment Minister Mark H Durkan today announced that Strangford Lough and Lecale Partnership will benefit from funding from the DOE’s Natural Environment Fund (NEF). Newry, Mourne and Down District Council will receive £60,000 from the NEF to administer the funding. The £1.25million NEF fund will enable NGO’s and landscape management…

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Councillors Train In Preparation For Transfer Of Planning Functions

A Councillor training programme has now commenced to ensure that Northern Ireland’s Councillors are equipped with the knowledge and skills to effectively carry out planning functions. Planning functions transfer from central government to local councils in April 2015 whilst the new councils themselves come into effect on the first of…

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Ministers Announce Consultation On Proposed Changes To Nitrates Action Programme

Environment Minister, Mark H Durkan and Agriculture Minister, Michelle O’Neill have announced a joint consultation exercise for the Nitrates Directive Action Programme for 2015-2018. The Nitrates Directive is designed to protect surface waters and groundwaters from the harmful effects of agricultural pollution and is implemented through an Action Programme of…

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New Mandatory Code Of Conduct For Councillors Passed By Assembly

A new mandatory code of conduct for councillors was passed by the Assembly today. It forms part of an ethical standards framework being introduced through the local government reform programme, and provides for openness and accountability of councillors’ actions. With the exception of a section on planning, the code comes…

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Carrier Bag Usage Is Down Says DOE Now NIIRTA Calls For Levy Decrease

Responding to DOE Minister, Mark H Durkin’s statement that Carrier Bag usage is down, the Northern Ireland Independent Retail Trade Association (NIIRTA) has called upon the Minister to withdraw plans to increase the levy to 10p. NIIRTA Chief Executive Glyn Roberts said: “It is clearly positive that some retailers have reported…

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Just Belt Up Says DOE!

Five Percent of Back Seat Passengers Don’t Belt Up Reports the DOE. Where are you in the statistics?  Figures from the Northern Ireland Survey of Seat Belt Wearing published today (Thursday 1 August) show that overall wearing rates in 2013 remain high at 98%.  In 2013, 98% of drivers were…

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Confessions of a Speeder

THIS past autumn I was caught speeding. There were a number of reasons why this came about, but there was one main one which stands out from the rest… I was driving too fast writes Jim Masson. It was a fair cop. In a 30 mph zone I was doing…

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New Irish Version of Highway Code Online

LEARNER drivers can now study the Highway Code in Irish. Environment Minister Alex Attwood has officially launched an online Irish language version of the Highway Code (Tuesday 25 September), and this latest translation joins a list of five alternative languages available online including Lithuanian, Mandarin, Polish, Portuguese and Russian. Launching…

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