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Monday 5 December 2016

Lord mayors oppose Cork council merger

Published 04/08/2015 | 02:30

Alan Kelly is due to receive an expert report on the Cork local authority structure in September
Alan Kelly is due to receive an expert report on the Cork local authority structure in September

Eighteen former lord mayors of Cork have slated as "unworkable" a proposal to create a super-council through the merger of the two Cork authorities.

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In an open letter, signed by the 18 lord mayors from Fine Gael, Fianna Fáil and Labour, they warned that the merger of Cork City and Cork County Council represented "an extraordinary proposition".

Environment Minister Alan Kelly will receive an expert report on the Cork local authority structure in September.

Alf Smiddy, chairman of the Cork Local Government Review Committee, has already urged Cork City Council and County Council to work together for the remaining weeks of the review.

However, fears have mounted that the committee may recommend a merger of the two councils, as in Limerick.

"This notion is simply preposterous," the letter from the former lord mayors warned.

"The idea that Cork city, the country's second city, should be divested of its essential powers to self-govern, to run its own affairs, to set its own budgets and to strategise for the future is an extraordinary proposition.

"Cities have these powers for good reason and we know that strong cities have a degree of autonomy."

Irish Independent

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