Sunday 21 January 2018

Committee of 11 grapples with budget for 2015

David Medcalf

DRAWING up the 2015 budget for Wexford County Council would be difficult for the full council of 34 members to tackle all together.

So Cathaoirleach Malcolm Byrne has set up a committee of 11 to grapple with the finances of the local authority in advance of a full council meeting.

Cllr. Byrne persuaded the members to set up the committee to carry out the preliminary work on what he predicted will be a difficult process.

Fianna Fáil will be represented by Councillors Michael Sheehan, Fergie Kehoe and Barbara Anne Murphy as well as by the cathaoirleach.

They will be joined by Fine Gael's Larry O'Brien and Jim Moore, while Deirdre Wadding will take the seat offered to People Before Profit.

Sinn Féin and Labour have also been given a place each and Malcolm Byrne suggested that the independents should also have a spot. However, Cllr. Wadding called for it to be taken into account that the independents cover a 'broad spectrum of thinking'. It was agreed that they should have two seats to allow representation of both left and right.

SF, Labour and the independents were given a week to put forward their nominees.

Council financial director Annette O'Neill warned that the figures to be entered into the calculations are not yet complete.

The Government has not yet made it clear what monies will be available from the local property tax or the rate support grant.

'It's going to be a very difficult budget,' commented chairman Byrne after the meeting.

The plan is to allow the different interests represented on the council to address the problems without having to thrash everything out at an unwieldy full meeting of all councillors.

Wexford People

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