Ennistymon Púca statue sidelined after criticism
Plans to erect a púca statue in the Clare town of Ennistymon have been put on hold following criticism from local people, who described it as “grotesque and scary”.
Clare County Council had proposed placing the six foot tall piece on a plinth at the end of Lower Church Hill, in an attempt to encourage more people to stay as part of extra tourism and visitor measures.
The ‘Púca of Ennistymon’ sculpture was to form part of a €500,000 investment programme by Fáilte Ireland, which is aimed at increasing visitor stays in the town, as well as improving some infrastructure.
The statue was said to be inspired by the town’s horse-heritage, as well as by Irish folklore. However, feedback to images released on social media revealed widespread dismay and outrage among the local population, with many saying it was not an appropriate image for the town, coupled with belief that the púca can bring bad luck.
No one denied access to birth data under new law
Adopted people will now be able to access their birth certificates under new legislation published last week, even if a parent indicates they don’t want to be identified.
The Minister for Children Roderic O’Gorman said that nobody will be denied access to their information under the proposed new law.
He believes the law strikes a “fair and compassionate” balance between the rights of adopted people seeking their past, and parents’ right to privacy.
This move was shot down by the previous Attorney General who advised it was infeasible under the Constitution, but the Government believes it is possible to do using an approach based in GDPR.
People will be able to access birth certs, as well as early life information and medical records where than information is available.
IMF recommends tax increases post-Covid
The International Monetary Fund (IMF) has said more tax will be needed in Ireland to fund investments in physical and human capital, according to RTÉ.
In a review of the Irish economy, the IMF said an increase in tax revenue should be considered after next year, once recovery efforts after Covid-19 are well underway.
Finance Minister Paschal Donohoe and Public Expenditure and Reform Minister Michael McGrath welcomed the IMF review, with both saying that Ireland is the only country in the EU with positive GDP growth. They acknowledged that many challenges remain as Ireland emerges from the grip of the pandemic, however.
Such challenges include adapting to post-Brexit trade arrangements, potential changes in international taxation, reducing the country’s national debt and getting people back to work.