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I want the citizens to choose their lord mayor - Donohoe

TRANSPORT Minister Paschal Donohoe has said he is fully in favour of a directly-elected mayor for Dublin and has pledged to raise the matter with new Environment Minister Alan Kelly.

His comments come after Mr Kelly at the weekend poured cold water on the idea, saying that while he isn't opposed to it, it would be "a big challenge and I don't see it happening".

Mr Donohoe yesterday told the Herald that he would like to see a directly-elected mayor for the city, something he said would be "very important for our society".

The Dublin Central-based minister intends to discuss the matter with Mr Kelly.

"It is something that I am supportive of as somebody who has served on Dublin City Council for a number of years," he said. "I recognise the very important work that the city council does as an engine for the city, and the work that all the other local authorities do as well.

"It is very important for our society within Dublin, it is very important for the economy within Dublin.

priorities

"I know Minister Kelly, he is like me and is new into the role. I know he is looking at what his priorities are. I'll be sitting down to talk to him about it.

"Minister Kelly has a huge portfolio ahead of him and much important work that he wants to do.

"But as somebody who is a representative within Dublin, I'd like to see how we could put in place a stronger local government and support all the work that is currently on the way."

Plans to hold a referendum or plebiscite on the issue along with the local and European elections were scuppered last March after Fingal councillors dismissed the proposal.

This comes despite the fact that the three other city and council authorities in Dublin had given their approval to the plan to let the citizens vote.

Mr Donohoe was speaking yesterday at Dublin's Broombridge train station, where he was viewing street art installations produced by a local youth group.

hnews@herald.ie


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