Author Archives: Andrew

Beggs asks Minister for an update on timescales for new build Abbey Community College

East Antrim UUP MLA Roy Beggs, who supported the amalgamation of Newtownabbey Community High and Monkstown Community School over 6 years ago, has asked for an update on timescales for the development of the new school at Abbey Community College. During Education Question Time, Mr Beggs asked the Minister of Education to “outline the timescale to build a new school at Abbey Community College, Newtownabbey.” Education Minister Michelle McIlveen responded; “Abbey Community College was announced as a major capital works project in June 2014. A business case for the project was approved, with the preferred option being a new build site at Three Mile Water, Newtownabbey. The site is currently owned by Antrim and Newtownabbey Borough Council. The estimated cost for the project is in the region of £34·3 million. That will provide accommodation and outside play facilities for the school, which has an approved enrolment number of 820 pupils. … Continue reading

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Beggs questions Economy Minister on good practice to minimise risk of Covid-19

East Antrim Ulster Unionist Assemblyman Roy Beggs MLA has questioned the Economy Minister on how to promote good practice to minimise the risk of the spread of Covid-19 and whether he agrees that in high-risk venues, COVID certificates or proof of a negative lateral flow test reduce the likelihood of the spread of COVID. Speaking at Stormont, Mr Beggs asked the Minister for the Economy “to outline the role of the Health and Safety Executive (HSE) in promoting good practice to minimise the risk of the spread of COVID-19.” The Economy Minister replied; “Throughout the pandemic, the Health and Safety Executive has sought to utilise the information emanating from the Public Health Agency in a way that will assist employers to keep their staff safe and that will allow them to continue to function. That advice has been offered not only through face-to-face inspections but via email, telephone conversations, social … Continue reading

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Roy Beggs comments on scrapped ‘Boris Bridge’

Ulster Unionist Infrastructure spokesperson, Roy Beggs MLA, said: “Unfortunately, I am not surprised that the so called ‘Boris bridge’ has been scrapped and that Sir Peter Hendy`s report has found that is isn`t currently viable. We did raise concerns about the engineering obstacles that would have to be overcome to attempt such a huge project in the current climate, never mind the billions of pounds that it would cost. It was the inevitable outcome. We must now ensure that we focus on improving connectivity between Northern Ireland and the rest of the UK and will be asking the Government to invest some of the money that would have been spent to build the bridge, on improving the road system in Scotland not least the A75 and A77. It is vital that our connections with Scotland and England will still feature as prominently in future spending plans to improve connectivity across … Continue reading

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Roy Beggs calls for action as MOT waiting list grows by nearly 50,000 in 2 months

Roy Beggs MLA, Ulster Unionist member of the Infrastructure Committee has expressed concern at the growing length of the MOT waiting list which has increased by 36,426 vehicles in September and a further 22,001 vehicles in October. “I am concerned that the MOT waiting list has grown over the past two months. It is disappointing that staffing levels have not enabled testing capacity return to the pre-COVID testing levels of 2019. Hard working DVA testers are carrying out additional shifts during the evenings an the weekend but still cannot meet demand. Meanwhile it is increasingly difficult for the public to keep their car on the road.” Roy Beggs MLA has been made aware from the MOT booking site that there is extremely limited availability of MOT slots anywhere in Northern Ireland over the next 10 weeks. It is becoming increasingly difficult to book an MOT when it is required. “Additional … Continue reading

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Beggs raises EV charge points with Infrastructure Minister

During a statement by the Infrastructure Minister on the recent British-Irish Council Transport meeting, East Antrim Ulster Unionist Party Assemblyman Roy Beggs raised his concerns about the current Electric Vehicle charge point infrastructure in Northern Ireland and asked the Minister for her views on what a sustainable model would look like for the service? Roy Beggs MLA said: “There is an extremely low number of publicly available electric charging points. The Electric Vehicle Association Northern Ireland has expressed concern about their unreliability; indeed, 75% of people say that they are not satisfied. Does the Minister accept that, to have a sustainable model, it is important that maintenance is built and that there are incentives to ensure not only that they are all working but that, when a car is fully charged, the customer will move on and leave the space free for the next driver to make use of the … Continue reading

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