Shane Ross


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Minister for Transport Shane Ross has described the potential Brexit impact as a ‘geopolitical, economic earthquake’.

23/01/2017 | Irish Times | The cancellation of flights from Donegal to Glasgow, Scotland,
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We can take on world’s best and win – a look back on an incredible year for Irish sport as tourism to hit record high

Shane Ross | 26/12/2016 | The Sun | ‘We may be a small island nation, but we have pr
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Archive for the ‘Transport’ Category

Aer Lingus Reaches For A Star

HAS the board of Aer Lingus gone walkabout?

The wobbly old airline, just out of the warm womb of public ownership, carrying baggage galore, has betrayed its semi-state ancestors. Burdened by a bombed-out share price, struggling with soaring fuel costs and rooted in a crumbling island economy, Aer Lingus faces a grim future. Worst of all, its steadfast chairman, John Sharman, is perched in the departure lounge, quitting at a time of crisis for the airline industry.


The Tearing Of The Green?

I am concerned about what will happen when Metro North construction begins in St. Stephen’s Green. Many of you contacted me to ask what effect it will have on the appearance of the Green. In a special adjournment debate I called in the Minister for Transport to raise the issue of the need to ensure the metro construction works in St. Stephen’s Green cause minimal damage to the environment and the least possible inconvenience to the public. As a national monument it needs to be sensitively developed and preserved.


Government Must Rev Up Transport 21

Most people support Transport 21. The Government’s renewed commitment not to cut capital expenditure is commendable and so I recently raised the issue of transport infrastructure in the Senate. In the fragile economic period we are approaching, it is important that such expenditure is not cut, particularly on infrastructure because of its importance to the economy.The infrastructural problems that were never resolved during the Celtic tiger era. All forms of transport were inadequate because nobody foresaw the extraordinary boom in land, air and sea traffic. The Governments plans are predominantly aspirational but we should encourage the Government to proceed full steam ahead with its plans and not carp too much about them.


M50 Fees And Fines

Many of you continue to sit in long lines trying to crawl along the M50 with thousands of other commuters. My cage rattling has obviously had some effect as they are about to remove the toll plaza that causes such frustration but they seem to have missed the point completely. They aren’t about to ease the suffering of the motorist commuter, prices are set to rise and fines introduced! Infuriated, I raised this in a special adjournment debate.


Money, Money, Money, Must Be Funny, In The NRA’s World

DO you still doubt the hidden talents of all those sluggish state agencies?

You do? Go straight to the National Roads Authority (NRA) for reassurance.

Next, invoke the name Maurice O’Connell, the doyen of Irish economic folklore.

Last week a report ordered by the National Roads Authority (NRA) was leaked.The topic was the latest penal hike in toll charges at the M50. And what was in the report? (more…)

Listen To My Interview With Eamon Dunphy Here!

Recently,  I was interviewed by Eamon Dunphy on his Saturday morning radio show. Listen here to find out about how I entered politics, my meetings with the late Joe Dolan in a Carrickmines shop, the turmoil in the world markets, my views on broadband, and what music I chose!

O’Leary’s Sixty Grand Bruni Bargain

Michael O’Leary has had a wonderful week. He lost €30m personally; Ryanair bombed by half a billion in value; profits tanked by 27 per cent; earnings per share dropped by 24 per cent. Even better, O’Leary issued a shock profit warning: the worst was yet to come.

Best of all, the President of France defeated him in a bizarre court case.


Government To Maintain Motorist’s Misery On M50

It seems that from next August, tolls on the M50′s Westlink will be raised from €1.90 to €3 for occasional users – a whopping 60% increase! I had thought that the battle had been won and that the State had bought out NTR for €600 million, €50 million per year until 2020. I thought that this had been done to let traffic flow freely and to relieve the misery of the motorist on the M50.

However, what has happened is that the government has bought out NTR’s interest so that the motorist, having been screwed by one monopoly, will now be screwed by the State in an even more crucial and acute way. The government should instead be concentrating on providing public transport alternatives to motorists. Here’s what I told the Seanad:


None Of Your Business, Prime Minister.

Omerta everywhere. Omerta between the feisty blonde bombshell, the Lady Appleby of Ireland‘s civil servants, Julie O’Neill and Transport Minister Noel Dempsey. Omerta between Sir Humphrey Appleby himself, Dermot McCarthy and Taoiseach Bertie Ahern.

Omerta between the Dublin Airport Authority (DAA) and its downtown Shannon office.

In every instance, one party knew that Aer Lingus was poised to desert Shannon for Belfast. In every instance the party with the knowledge failed to deliver it to the correct destination. Happily, on Thursday, Lady Appleby-O’Neill gave herself a clean bill of health. Her report on her own activities blamed no one. Nice work.

What is going on?


Civil Servants Should Not Filter Information To Protect Ministers

The Aer Lingus affair was debated in the Seanad again yesterday. I argued that what Aer Lingus does is not the business of politicians; it is out in the private sector. However, the Byzantine manoeuvres of civil servants, supposedly to protect their Ministers, does concern us. When the Seanad debated the issue in the past two weeks, we were doing it in the dark because we had incomplete information.

If civil servants are filtering sensitive information to Ministers to protect us, that is seriously disturbing. Equally disturbing is the DAA’s failure to keep its principal shareholder informed of its plans. This is what I told the Seanad: (more…)