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'Traffic tsar' Keegan lands city manager job

OWEN Keegan has become Dublin's new city manager at a salary of €190,000.

Mr Keegan, who is currently the head of Dun Laoghaire-Rathdown Council, was the most high-profile candidate tipped for the job.

Other potential candidates included the Dublin deputy city manager Philip Maguire and Tim Lucey, head of Cork City Council.

Mr Keegan, from Stillorgan, is seen as a tough decision-maker. He introduced clamping to the city in 1998 when he was the director of traffic for the council.

When he moved to Dun Laoghaire-Rathdown, he became the first council manager in Dublin to get rid of the public bin service – a move then followed by the other three Dublin councils.

Mr Keegan was paid €153,260 as Dun Laoghaire/ Rathdown manager, so his new job gives him a 23.5pc pay hike.

He succeeds John Tierney, who has left Dublin City Council to take over the new water utility Irish Water.

Mr Keegan is an economist who worked in both the private and public sector and is regarded by many as a 'can-do' man.


Dublin City Council declined to officially comment on the appointment.

After he introduced clamping in Dublin city, Mr Keegan earned the nickname "traffic tsar".

He was appointed Dun Laoghaire county manager in late 2005. He was also assistant city manager of Dublin for 10 years, and, before entering public service, was an economist with Davy Kelleher McCarthy.

Mr Keegan's appointment will have to be formally ratified by councillors in City Hall, though they only have the power to delay the move for a short period, rather than block it.

Prior to taking up his role in Dun Laoghaire, councillors delayed the appointment.

By an 18 vote to nine majority, councillors decided to defer approval until the following month and, in the meantime, invite Mr Keegan to outline his vision for the job.

However, at the next meeting, the appointment was ratified without further stalling.