Boundary Changes Must Not Target Urban Growth At Rural Expense – Rural Independent Group

Members of the Oireachtas Rural Independent Group are set to call on the government to ensure that any proposed changes to county boundaries do not adversely affect the possibility of future rural regeneration. The members were speaking ahead of a Dáil debate on the Group’s private members motion on the issue.

The Motion is also set to address concerns regarding attempts by agencies in the private sector and State bodies to encroach on county boundaries for commercial purposes:

“The recent controversy surrounding proposals to extend the Cork City boundary into the Cork County Council area has given rise to profound concern in many parts of rural Ireland.

Our fear is that this model will become something of a blue print to legitimise a redrawing of county boundaries at the expense of rural communities and the further curtailment of available Local Authority funding.

We will be seeking urgent confirmation from Minister Eoghan Murphy that the long established boundary limits will not be targeted in this way.

Among the other specific issues we are asking the Minister to address is why in relation to Cork City Council are affluent areas being brought in under the proposed new boundary changes.

For example; the very small village of Killumney is included in the proposal, for no other obvious reason apart from the fact that Dell EMC is located in this area and it would provide a lot of finance through the collection of its commercial rates.

We need absolute certainty on these and a range of other issues if we are to have any faith that the government’s commitment to the future viability of rural communities is more than just mere lip service.”

Mattie McGrath, Michael J. Healy-Rae, Michael Collins, Noel Grealish, Michael Harty, Danny Healy-Rae, Michael Lowry.

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