Residents and business owners in Dungannon are furious because streetlights are being allowed to blaze all day and night in parts of the town.
Residents have complained that the public car park behind Perry Street is flood-lit all day, and have reported the problem to the Department for Infrastructure, which incorporates the former Department of Regional Development.
“I registered the fault to a hotline provided by the department, but was told that the problem had already been reported”, said one local man.
“When I asked would my complaint make a difference, I was left with no reassurance and was told that such work orders were carried out by independent contractors.”
The former Department for Regional Development, which was in charge of operating the car park, has been heavily criticised for not fixing faulty streetlights and jeopardising public safety because of severe budget constraints.
“We are told that the department can’t afford to maintain local roads and streetlights but here is a clear example of them burning taxpayer’s money”, said the resident.
“The problem has been going on for several months now, and it seems there is not the will to tackle it.”
In November, a £1m spending boost to the department meant that a backlog of broken street lights was tackled. Almost 20,000 lights went out across the province during the previous winter.