Mayor Argues Passionately for University
Issued : Saturday 22 November, 2008
In the course of a very forceful and well received speech to the Waterford Chamber of Commerce Annual Dinner the Mayor of Waterford, Cllr. Jack Walsh made a very strong and passionate case for the re-designation of Waterford Institute of Technology as the University of the South East. The Guest of Honour was the Minister for Finance, Mr. Brian Lenihan T.D.
In the course of his address the Mayor stressed that time for the re-designation was now. "The Government may say that the current economic climate means now is not the time for re-designation of Waterford Institute of Technology as University of the South East. However, I passionately believe that the opposite is the case" the Mayor stated.
He then outlined the main reasons why he believed that the time is now e.g. if the region is to participate in the new knowledge based economy of the future a University of the South East is a must, the South East is the only region without a university, That major deficit compromises all other endeavour, the process for university designation is well advanced, the case has been weighed by international experts on a number of occasions and the case was found to be irrefutable, there are no logical or rational reasons for further delay on this issue.
The Mayor also welcomed the decision of Bord Pleanala to approve the KRM development in the City Centre saying it has come at an important time for Waterford and it will be good for jobs in the construction industry in the short term and for jobs in the retail and services sectors in the longer term.
The Mayor also highlighted the need for government support for the Gateway Innovation Fund project in the City, the implementation of decentralisation as soon as possible and funding for the development of Waterford Regional Airport.
Minister Lenihan in his remarks acknowledged that Waterford had made a strong case and that Minister Martin Cullen was also making strong representations for the University of the South East. He stressed that the economy was facing major challenges and the government had to make hard decisions for the long term future of the Country.
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