Independent TD Mattie McGrath and Independent County Councillors Richie Molloy and Martin Lonergan have accused Fianna Fáil representatives for creating more spin and fake news when it comes to the removal of the Cahir Local Electoral Area from Clonmel Borough District.
The statement comes following a meeting this morning with Minister of State for Local Government and Electoral Reform, Mr John Paul Phelan in Clonmel Town Hall to discuss rational for the removal of the Cahir LEA from the Borough District.
The Minister, along with his Officials and Councillors and Council Officials met to discuss the proposed realignment of the Boundaries contrary to what was decided by the Independent Boundaries Commission.
The meeting had been arranged by Deputy McGrath following reports that the Minister had signed Ministerial Orders prior to Christmas 2018 implementing the changes prior to the Local Elections in May.
“It appears that Deputy Cahill, in a social media post, advised that he had arranged a meeting with Minister Phelan to discuss boundary changes with local Fianna Fáil representatives in a post last Friday. However, the meeting had been arranged prior to this and in fact discussed at this month’s County Council meeting. Deputy Cahill’s post appeared over a week after the Council and officials were notified.
It would be best practice if the Local Fianna Fail organisation would meet to discuss changes to the boundaries and if they could come to one common position as was not the case this morning in Town Hall. The facts remain; the Borough District of Clonmel is NOT a restoration of the Borough Council, it will not have autonomy as the former Corporation had, it will have less of an area, there are no guarantees that a block grant will be restored and if it will, the funding will be taken out of the County Budget.
This seems to be another deal drawn up by Fianna Fáil and Fine Gael in the confidence and supply agreement and while we all would like to see a return of the Borough Councils, the decision to make Clonmel a separate Borough District is merely a gesture and without its own autonomy, we believe it is a downgrading of the Town. Let’s be clear, this is not a return to the Borough Council as we knew it prior to 2014.”