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Dublin: 13 °C Wednesday 24 April, 2019
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Directly-elected mayor plan "absolutely has to happen" --- Lord Mayor

The ‘mayors and chairs’ of Dublin’s four local authorities are due to meet with Minister Phil Hogan to see if the issue can be moved forward.

Christy Burke

THE NEW LORD Mayor of Dublin says the plan to bring in a directly elected ‘executive mayor’ must happen.

Independent Christy Burke, who was selected by the city council to serve in the ceremonial position for the next 12 months at a meeting earlier this month, said the failure of a proposal to put the issue to the people in a county-wide vote was “absolutely disgusting”.

“It’s my number one shot. You’re talking about local government reform that should have been the first hit,” he told TheJournal.ie this afternoon.

Proposals to hold a ‘plebiscite’ on the issue in tandem with the recent local and European elections were scuppered in March, after Fingal councillors vetoed the proposal. The three other authorities had backed the plan to hold a vote.

Last week, Minister for Local Government Phil Hogan confirmed he would be inviting the ‘mayors and chairs’ from the four councils to a meeting on the issue, which is now set to go ahead at the start of next month.

The Minister said the Government remained committed to the “the notion of a plebiscite for the office”.

Burke, who has served a councillor since 1985, said the change was “long overdue”.

“We need a directly elected mayor with proper powers: transport, policing, housing and other issues.

The man or woman who gets that job needs to be committed to a five year term, directly elected by the people, and accountable to the people.

“Let’s go with it, it’s long overdue.”

Hogan on Dublin mayor plan: ‘I might be 6′ 5” but I’m not going to lean in any direction’

Also: Two more councils back mayor proposal, but Fingal’s ‘nay’ scuppers plan

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