History of getting a Cycling officer for Fingal CoCo from 2016 to 2020

2020 We have been requesting a cycling officer as far back as 2016 from Fingal County Council. On September 14th 2020 a motion from Councillor Karen Power: Cycling and walking officer. AI054663

That the Chief Executive appoint at senior level, a Cycling and Walking Officer on the back of recent significant funding from the National Transport Authority for such projects for Fingal.

A recent motion submitted by Dublin Cycling Campaign representative Ray Ryan got this response from Fingal County Council public participation network or PPN.

Question submitted: “That this Committee advises the Chief Executive to implement Government policy by designating a senior official as Cycling & Walking Officer, to coordinate and be responsible for active travel issues, and to provide for the setting up of a Fingal Cycling and Walking Forum, representative of all stakeholders, which would help achieve the optimal use of the increased levels of funding.”

Background : “Following rejection of the idea of appointing a Cycling & Walking Officer four years ago, Fingal County Council brought the subject back for discussion last year. The benefits of cycling and walking (“Active Travel”) to improving health and well-being and to reducing congestion and fossil fuel emissions are well known. But there are now increased allocations of funding for cycling and walking infrastructure being provided by the NTA Council on foot of the Programme for Government. Since the outbreak of the Pandemic, we are advised daily to walk and cycle more.”

Report from FCC: “The improvement of cycling facilities and infrastructure in Fingal and enhancing the visibility and promotion of cycling in the county are priorities for the Council. The Council sets out its policies and plans for cycling and walking in the County Development Plan and senior officers regularly engage / meet with the National Transport Authority to develop and agree programmes for cycling and walking. In addition, cycling and walking policies are implemented on an ongoing basis through the development management and forward planning (Local Area Plans etc.) processes. The responsibility for the promotion and raising of awareness initiatives specific to cycling is assigned to the Council’s Road Safety Unit: ➢ Contact point for queries relating to cycling matters ➢ Coordinating cycling events i.e. Bike Week etc. ➢ Managing Cycle Training in schools throughout the county ➢ Information and awareness ➢ Promotion of cycling events ➢ Liaising with An Taisce for their ‘Green Schools’ surveys ➢ Carrying out Walking and Cycling audits of school routes and developing “Walking Bus” routes Alongside this, responsibility for investment in and the development of the necessary Infrastructure, whether through the adaptation of existing roads or the construction of new routes is assigned to those sections of the Council in which the necessary engineering design and works expertise resides. Members will be aware that staffing and organisational arrangements are made with a view to the efficient and effective delivery of the functions of the local authority. Arrangements are kept under review and are improved and revised as the operating environment changes. The foregoing arrangements regarding the cycling programme are considered appropriate at the moment however, as with all programmes, staffing and resourcing arrangements will be kept under review as the programme evolves. The requirement for the designation of a cycling officer will be considered in this context.” This report speaks for itself in that FCC at the moment does not see any convincing reason to appoint a Cycling and Walking Officer. Is it time to respect that opinion? Replying to a question from Ray Ryan (PPN), David Storey said that FCC view a job description for a Cycling & Walking Officer as being related more to cycling & walking promotion rather than being involved in the technicalities of infrastructure provision.

2019 In April 2019 the current TD Roderic O’Gorman got a motion passed on Fingal County Council to have a Cycling officer. More details on this article posted back in 2019 https://www.dublincycling.com/cycling/first-time-cycling-officer-positio… More details on Minister Roderic O’Gorman’s twitter page https://twitter.com/rodericogorman/status/1115335237494611968?s=19

2016 As part of the process of drafting the Fingal Development Plan, FCC councillors have - shockingly - been voting against progressive cycling and walking measures in the last few days, as reported in this Journal.ie article https://www.thejournal.ie/cycling-schools-3020766-Oct2016/ We covered this in more detail on our website post here: https://www.dublincycling.com/cycling/fingal-county-council-urgently-nee…

Sunday, 13 September 2020 - 11:00am

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