Plans for a recycling centre in Blessington are in jeopardy as Wicklow County Council contemplates selling 1.3 acres which had been earmarked as the perfect location for the facility.
Cllr. Jim Ruttle is determined to scuttle any moves to sell the site beside the council buildings, and thinks the Council is being short-sighted considering there is no recycling centre in the west of the county.
The 1.3 acre site already has full planning permission, making it the ideal location for the recycling centre, particularly as it would have been beside other services such as the council building and the local fire station.
'This is sending out the completely wrong message. The Council seems to be willing to sell in the mistaken belief that they will be able to find somewhere more suitable. They claim to be fully committed to recycling but I don't know how they expect people to believe that now,' he says.
'We have to send out certain positive messages and this just seems to be a step backwards. I have been pushing for this for years and thought I was nearing the finishing line. Next thing you know, the site could be up for sale.'
The site is part of 30 acres purchased by the Council for £99,000 in 1972.
Over the past five or so years the Council has already made around e7 million through the disposal of sites and units on the land.
The disposal of the site is the reserved function of the elected members of the Council and the issue is expected to come before them either at their next meeting on Monday, or during January's first sitting of the New Year.
'No matter what price the council get for the land where do they think they will get more land suitable?
'There is no guarantee another site would get planning permission,' points out Cllr. Ruttle.