Minister confirms Chief Executive of a local authority has no power to change reserved functions to executive functions – Mattie McGrath

Independent TD Mattie McGrath has had it confirmed by the Minister for Local Government, Eoghan Murphy, that the Chief Executive of Tipperary County Council has no authority or remit to change the reserved functions of the Council to Executive functions; a move that would potentially override the democratic rights of local councillors. Deputy McGrath was speaking after plans to ban vehicular access to St Patrick’s Cemetery in Clonmel by the local authority are being justified by the Chief Executive on the basis that the proposal is within the executive powers of council management:

“There is clearly a significant dispute here around what the management of the Council can and cannot do.

However; one thing is now absolutely clear and that is that the division of reserved and executive functions is such that the Chief Executive operates within a framework of policy laid down by the elected members.

As the minister has explicitly confirmed to me; it is not within the remit of a Chief Executive of a local authority to change reserved functions to executive functions.

Members of the public in their thousands are strongly opposed to this plan and those views must be respected.

I am therefore calling on the Chief Executive, Mr Joe MacGrath, to make an absolute commitment that he will not proceed with any proposed plans to prohibit vehicular access in the absence of meaningful dialogue with the protestors and especially until he responds to the ministers reply,” concluded Deputy McGrath.

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