NO ENNISCORTHY town councillor offered to attend Minister Phil Hogan's invitation to attend the launch of his programme of local government reform last week.
Cathaoirleach Keith Doyle pointed out at last Monday night's meeting ( just hours before the Minister would outline his proposed reforms on Tuesday) that the call to Dublin Castle arrived at very short notice, just a day beforehand. He explained that he would not be in attendance as he had a personal engagement which made it impossible for him to be present.
But he also made it clear that he would not be interested in hearing what the Minister had to say when most of his plan had already been leaked to the press anyway. Cllr. Doyle looked around the council table and wondered whether anyone would like to deputise.
'It sounds like being invited to your own execution,' observed Cllr. Jackser Owens who recalled that he recently travelled to Clare for a conference on local government. Whatever he learned was now rendered worthless by the 'Putting People First' changes, he complained. As vice-chairman, Cllr. Pat Cody had first refusal on the offer of a place in the Castle but the Labour man said he must decline for personal reasons. ' We'll decide not to bother sending someone up,' said Keith Doyle acidly, bringing discussion of the subject to a firm conclusion.