TRUCKS continue to use Johnstown village as a rat-run rather than pay the E5.80 toll to use the new motorway. They are causing severe traffic disruption in the little town and have made it more difficult for local people to access and enter the village from minor roads.
Cllr. Mary Hilda Cavanagh (FG) again raised the matter at the last meeting of Kilkenny County Council and referred to the response received from the NRA in relation to lorries using the old N8 instead of the motorway. She stated that the NRA did not adequately respond in relation to engaging with the Hauliers Association to address this issue. It was proposed by Cllr Cavanagh and seconded by Cllr Michael O’Brien and unanimously agreed that a letter be sent to the Minister for Transport to meet with the Hauliers Association and come to some arrangement to reduce the numbers of lorries using the N8 from Urlingford to Portlaoise. A copy of letter was sent to the NRA also.
“We need an agreement in place to solve this crux because there are many other small towns and villages affected in a similar fashion to Johnstown,” Cllr Kavanagh said. She said that if the NRA deceased the cost of the toll in a kind of group rate scheme for hauliers who use the route a lot, it would be a more equitable system.
“The lorry drivers and the hauliers say they cannot afford the extra E5.80 each way especially now when diesel has become more expensive than petrol,” Cllr Cavanagh said.