Category Archives: This Week at Stormont

Beggs shocked at the announcement of the closure of Larne Danske Bank

East Antrim Ulster Unionist MLA, Roy Beggs, has expressed his shock at the news that the Larne branch of the Danske Bank is to close. Roy Beggs MLA said: “The Danske Bank (formally Northern Bank) has been a core part of Larne’s financial institutions for many decades. I am shocked to learn that it has now been earmarked for closure. With recent reports of increased profits at Danske Bank, I fail to understand this decision which will adversely affect customers and I have already arranged an urgent meeting with the Bank questioning this decision and asking them to reconsider. “With the increased use of online banking, services have changed over the years but front line customer facing services remain important to domestic and business customers. It is concerning that one of the biggest banks in Northern Ireland is proposing to withdraw from Larne and further reduce access for customers.”

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Beggs receives update from Department re: North Road railway bridge

East Antrim Ulster Unionist Party MLA Roy Beggs has received an update from the Department of Infrastructure in relation to his request “for a significant upgrade in warning signage so that visitors driving high sided vehicles are less likely to get caught out” at the North Road railway bridge. The Department of Infrastructure have advised the MLA as follows: “I can confirm that the Department and Translink carried out an audit of the signage on the approaches to North Road bridge in September 2016 and found it to be in accordance with current advice and best practice. There are warning signs on the two approaches to the bridge which clearly indicate the presence of a low bridge stating the maximum height of vehicle which can safely pass under the bridge. There is a responsibility for all drivers to be in control of their vehicles at all times and to pay … Continue reading

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83,000 patients waiting longer than a year for a first appointment is frightening – Beggs

Ulster Unionist Health Spokesperson Roy Beggs MLA has said that the latest waiting times, which once again are the worst on record for the local NHS, are frightening. Roy Beggs said: “With every passing day the crisis in the local health service deepens. Whilst there were severe pressures two years ago, the situation today is wholly unrecognisable compared to even then. “It is scandalous that at the end of March there were over 83,000 patients waiting for over a year for their first appointment with a consultant. The figure has more than doubled in just 18 months and it illustrates the scale of the pace at which the situation is deteriorating. “The reasons for the worsening situation are still the same as they were 2 years ago – a rapidly ageing population, increased demand for services and a fundamental lack of funding. “Whilst some people can talk wishfully of transformation … Continue reading

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‘Frightening’ is the only way to describe latest slump in local A&E waiting times – Beggs

Following the publication of the latest A&E waiting time statistics, the Ulster Unionist Party’s Health Spokesperson, Roy Beggs MLA, has said that ‘frightening’ is the only word that can be used to describe the scale and pace of the deteriorating situation. Roy Beggs said: “The words crisis, breaking point and unprecedented challenges are becoming all too regular to describe the situation in the local health service. Yet there is no other term but frightening that can be used to describe what is happening in our emergency units right now. “Only 59.3% of patients attending our major emergency departments in March were treated and discharged, or admitted within four hours of their arrival: a fall of almost 11% on the same period last year and it makes the official target of 95% look like wholly unrealistic wishful thinking. It is also far, far below the waiting times being reported in England, … Continue reading

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Clarity needed from Department and Regulator on I-SEM Delay – Beggs

Roy Beggs MLA has called on the Utility Regulator and the Permanent Secretary of the Department for the Economy to ensure that certainty is created for all Electricity Generators in NI follow the announcement by SONI that the new I-SEM electricity market is being delayed by 4 months. Roy Beggs MLA said, “I am astonished to learn that a decision by SONI to delay the new Electricity market I-SEM by 4 months was made on 17th April without any explanation of its implications in terms the contractual payments for our Electricity Generators and their employees. The statement has been silent as to what alternative arrangements will be in place. To ensure stable electricity generation and supply to customers, there is a need for certainty going forward as to how electricity generation will be managed and paid for. This is particularly relevant for my constituents working at AES Kilroot and on … Continue reading

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