Fianna Fáil TD for Sligo-Leitrim Eamon Scanlon has called on the Government to give assurances that the Sligo to Dublin rail line will not be impacted as a result of financial problems facing the country’s rail network.
A recent report from the National Transport Authority warned that a major increase in funding is needed to maintain the current infrastructure.
Deputy Scanlon raised the issue with the Tánaiste Frances Fitzgerald during Order of Business in the Dáil this week.
He explained, “I am extremely concerned by reports that the Sligo-Dublin rail line could be impacted by the funding issues being faced by Irish Rail. Any changes to the service would have major repercussions for businesses, commuters and tourism in Sligo and all efforts must be made to ensure that the current schedule is maintained.
“The Sligo to Dublin line is the third busiest in the country and cannot be allowed to take the hit for other underperforming routes. There is understandably a sense of anxiety as a result of the uncertainty caused by recent reports that the route will be affected and I called on the Government to give assurances that the current services will be retained.
“Transport Minister Shane Ross should spend more time concentrating on areas within his own Department instead of pursuing personal agendas. He has failed to give any indication as to whether full services on the line will be maintained.
“Minister Ross must make it clear that there will be no changes to rail services on the Sligo to Dublin line. Anything short of that will not be accepted. The rail route is a valuable asset for the town and county of Sligo and any changes to the service would have major repercussions for the North West region. This cannot be allowed happen and I will be seeking assurances from the Minister that it won’t”.