The following is an extract from councils own “Kerry Economic Recovery Plan” launched in 2021. The image is a screenshot from page 81, unfortunately not too many will continue reading that far!
1. Kerrys economy is performing 4th worst in the country
2. Average household income (per house, not per worker) is €37,000, which is €9,000 less than the national average.
3. Taking into account relatively good incomes in Killarney (the Kerry Hub), the average outside that is much lower.
Parts of north Kerry have €28,000 per annum household income.
4. Kerry County Council is fully aware of all of this and continue to progress ‘The Kerry Hub’. “Peripheral areas” are on the outskirts of the county,
ie. North Kerry.
5. You will have seen mention of the “North Kerry Shannon Estuary Network” which KCC says is the equivalent of the Kerry Hub. This network does not exist – it has not yet been formed.
So we have Kerry County Council who aware that the county (pre covid) was performing 4th worst in the country and aware that the “peripheral areas” of the county were performing worst, ie North Kerry, yet they continue to concentrate future development into the central area of the county.
While Kerry County Council has the power to do this, we would expect KCC to then accept responsibility for the future development of the county – they dont see it that way. They claim there is a “joint responsibility” between all state agencies, etc. We now have the situation where there is no single entity accepting responsibility for the economic development of the county, no leader, rudderless.
There is a two day council meeting next week to discuss the submissions to the County Development Plan and I hope our councillors are aware of this part of the ‘Recovery Plan’ for Kerry and that they highlight the obvious lack of an economic development plan in our part of the county.