Tuesday, 2 May 1967
Dáil Eireann Debate
Minister for Transport and Power (Mr. Childers): I am informed by the Electricity Supply Board that there are sixteen rural areas in West Galway in six of which construction work under the post-development scheme has been completed. These are Spiddal, Castlegar, Oughterard, Killanin, Clifden, Annaghdown. It is proposed to re-canvass the remaining ten areas in the following order, Carraroe, Rosmuc, Kilkieran and Roundstone, Ballyconneely and Cleggan, Letterfrack and Lettermore, Leenane, Cornamona. It is expected that the re-canvass of Carraroe area will commence in about two weeks time and the remaining areas will follow at intervals of from three to four months.
Mr. Coogan: In view of the importance of tourism in this area, will the Minister take steps to expedite, to a greater degree than up to the present,  the provision of electrification for these people? It is important that they should at least have light.
Mr. Childers: Within the limits of the capital allocation of the ESB, and bearing that in mind, I have recently asked Bord Fáilte to give me a report on this matter to see whether there is any need for any further expedition. As the Deputy has learned from the reply, re-canvassing of these areas, many of which are involved in tourist development, is proceeding fairly rapidly.
Mr. Coogan: While I appreciate the Minister's reference to the Tourist Board, I am sure the Minister is aware that many of these people are not registered with the Board and the Board are not interested in them. Yet these people do a lot of catering outside the jurisdiction of the Board. In these circumstances would he take steps himself to ensure that something is done?
Mr. Childers: Bord Fáilte do not concern themselves only with registered premises. There are also nearly 7,000 residences where guests are taken and which are listed by the Board as suitable for tourists, even though they do not require to be registered. Bord Fáilte are fully aware of the total tourist potential in regard to accommodation throughout the country.
Mr. Childers: They have been listed and the list published as part of the total hotel and guesthouse potential. As the Deputy knows, regional tourist boards are, in fact, taking over from Bord Fáilte the particular function of advertising unregistered accommodation and securing it. Therefore eight regional tourist boards are also engaged in this work.
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