Wednesday 21 March 2018

Coveney agrees to back library

The Minister for Local Government Simon Coveney has given a commitment to Sligo County Council to retain all Sligo public library services.

"This is an important breakthrough in the campaign to retain not just library services, but all Council services at a sustainable level," said Councillor Thomas Healy who welcomed the announcement as an "important breakthrough."

"The Council has confirmed to us that the Minister has accepted the import of the motion which I submitted in February calling on the Minister to sanction the recruitment of staff to replace retired staff.

"This will ensure that, not only library services, but also all other council services can be maintained.

"We all accept the dire financial status of Sligo County Council and I was part of the delegation that went to the Department and outlined the Council's financial plan and the need to save money.

"However the surplus of €12.3m over five years would have resulted in the closure of services - the Department have now relented and acknowledged our position that this was unrealistic.

"The library service in Enniscrone was particularly vulnerable due to staff retirements and I wish to commend local people who highlighted the issue and collected a huge petition locally calling for the retention of their library.

"This is an example of the type of strong community spirit needed to protect services especially in rural areas."

"I will continue to monitor the situation and look forward to seeing the recruitment of staff.

Sligo Champion