Rita Gately is County Veterinary officer for Galway, she said “The proposals would mean that the county veterinary posts would be regionalised and there would be a direct reporting structure to the lead authority, of which there would only be three in the whole of Ireland. This would result in lost autonomy and a lessened ability to interact with and support local abbatoirs and meat manufacturing premises.
“The main role of the county vet is in regulating and providing advice locally to food producers, horse control and dog control, and helping the odd stranded emu or logger headed turtle. We protect public health by regulating local abattoirs and meat processors of which there are 26 in total in Galway, to European standards.”
“The proposal for shared services centred in 3 lead authorities, with an exclusive reporting structure directly into that authority will mean this local support to service users in each county will not be possible and may threaten the viability of these businesses. If these proposals go ahead, work such as the recent four training courses – attended by over 60 participants – would not be possible” she said.
The local government divisional conference continues tomorrow 22nd May 2015 with a seminar on the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP), speakers will include Lynn Boylan, Sinn Fein MEP; Penny Clarke, European Public Services Union; Esther Lynch, ICTU; and Michael Ewing, the Environmental Pillar.