Tuesday, 28 June 2005
Dáil Eireann Debate
35. Mr. G. Mitchell asked the Minister for the Environment, Heritage and Local Government if, in view of the phenomenal growth in population in the Drogheda — south Louth — east Meath area (details supplied), he will grant Drogheda and district city status and thus allow this area to have full responsibility and control over its own future; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [22311/05]
Minister for the Environment, Heritage and Local Government (Mr. Roche): The Local Government Act 2001 modernises the legislative framework, supports community involvement with local authorities in a more participative local democracy and underpins generally the programme of local government renewal, including the position of county and city councils as the primary units of local government. Under the Act, there are five city councils and also five borough councils, including Drogheda, each of which is responsible for a significant range of legal and administrative functions in their respective areas as well as contributing to local development in co-operation with their respective county council.
The Act takes account of the recommendations of the 1996 report of the reorganisation commission, Towards Cohesive Local Government — Town and County, regarding improved accessibility, interaction and linkages for all boroughs and towns with their local county council areas as the way forward. A modernised legal framework and structures at both regional and local level are now in place which provide the necessary powers and flexibility to local authorities to work in partnership at local and regional level to co-ordinate the provision of integrated public services. In these circumstances, I have no proposals for amending legislation, which would be necessary to establish a new city council.
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