31/07/2012

€30m Savings To Be Achieved In Tipperary Council Merger

Mr Phil Hogan, T.D., Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government today welcomed the publication by the Tipperary Reorganisation Implementation Group of the Implementation Plan for the establishment of a unified local authority in Tipperary. The plan follows on from a decision taken by Government in July 2011 to establish a unified County Council in Tipperary with effect from the 2014 local elections, replacing the existing North and South Tipperary County Councils.

"I am very pleased with the progress that is being made with the reorganisation process in Tipperary and I particularly welcome the potential savings of €30 million over the 5-year lifetime of the Council."

The Minister stressed the non-financial benefits of unification: "The rationale for unification does not lie primarily in financial benefits. It should also bring about stronger, more cohesive local government that is better positioned to promote the interests of the county and contribute to job creation and the recovery effort generally. A unified local authority, following 173 years of separation, will serve an increased population, should have greater scale, strength, assets and capacity to help meet challenges arising and to promote the economic and social development of the county as a whole."

The publication of the Plan is an important early milestone in the reform process ahead of wider local government reform proposals expected in the autumn.

Expressing agreement with the broad thrust of the methodology for unification proposed by the Group, the Minister indicated his willingness to assist, where necessary, to see the process carried through to completion in time for the 2014 local elections.

The Minister concluded: "Reform of local government is a key element of the Government’s efforts to restore stability to Ireland's financial and economic position and the work being undertaken to amalgamate authorities in Tipperary is at the vanguard of that effort. I would like to thank the Implementation Group and the support team and staff in both authorities who are making an excellent contribution to the unification process. I also want to acknowledge the positive engagement to date by councillors and unions in both councils with the process. I can guarantee my full support and that of my Department for the on-going work and my determination to bring the process to a successful conclusion."

(CD/GK)

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