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18 June 2004
Irish Monuments Bill a backward step for protection

Speaking during the second stage debate on the National Monuments (Amendment) Bill 2004, Sinn Féin spokesperson on the Environment, Heritage and Local Government Arthur Morgan TD slammed the anti-heritage ethos behind the Bill and questioned Minister Martin Cullen's suitability for holding responsibility for the Heritage portfolio.
     Deputy Morgan said: "Unsurprisingly, Minister Martin Cullen has brought forward a Bill which seeks to put developers and the interests of the National Roads Authority before safeguarding our heritage. The basic underlying theory of the Bill is to permit the destruction of national monuments to facilitate infrastuctural developments. If the Minister for Environment, Heritage and Local Government had any interest in Heritage protection what he should be doing is putting in place mechanisms to ensure that, prior to the commencement of developments such as the Carrickmines interchange, proper procedures and impact assessment studies are put in place. Instead, we have provisions in this Bill allowing the Minister to grant a consent for the carrying out of works to a national monument which may result in the destruction of part or all of the monument after archaeological works have been carried out."
     The Save Tara Skryne Valley Group called for an 'anger strike' against the National Monuments Bill.

Source: Politics.ie (17 June 2004)

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