A GROUP OF eight subcontractors has staged a protest in Kerry this morning over claims they haven’t been paid for work carried out on the Dingle to Tralee road at Annascaul.
The N86 was blocked at the school in the village and at another point halfway between Camp and Annascaul. There was also a blockade at the contractor’s premises.
Local TD Michael Healy Rae attended the protest to highlight the “increasing, worrying problem” of subcontractors not getting paid.
Speaking to TheJournal.ie, Healy Rae said contractors are currently getting jobs after quoting “a cheap price” but, subsequently, subcontractors are not getting paid.
These jobs are funded through central government or the European Union, he added. “It is happening in a lot of public works, including schools and roads.”
“It is bad enough for these people to have little work but then when they do work, they don’t get paid. It is crippling,” he continued. “This dispute involved eight subcontractors who are trying to make ends meet. It is a desperate action by people in a desperate situation.”
One of the subcontractors Jimmy O’Dwyer told Radio Kerry that the group is owned money from as far back as May 2012.
“We are finding it harder and harder every day to try and get through with our businesses, pay our employees and its coming to the stage that we won’t be able to do that unless we get our money.”
The group vowed to continue the protest until they received the money allegedly owed to them. The contractors dispute that there is money owing.