Case made for Fermoy town hall to be retained as new municipal district HQs
The case for making Fermoy town hall the administrative headquarters for the new municipal district being formed after the abolition of the town councils next year was made strongly at last week's meeting of the town council.
Cllr Tadhg O'Donovan raised the matter by way of a motion that they call on Cork County Council to retain the present building, which houses town and county council staff, as the new headquarters for the municipal district. "We have exceptional facilities here. The staff and the expertise is here. I think it would be a total injustice to even contemplate putting it in either of the other two areas."
Those two areas are Mitchelstown and Charleville, the latter of which was brought into the district following the boundary changes announced earlier this year.
There couldn't be a better place to headquarter the new authority, Cllr O'Donovan stressed. Cllr Pa O'Donovan agreed and seconded the motion. He pointed out that Fermoy is a major town. "I know Mitchelstown are very worried about their sub-offices being downgraded. There's no administrative headquarters in the others so it makes sense but I don't want to get into a tit-for-tat, an 'imby' - in my back yard," he said.
"It makes sense. It'd be a disgrace to lose it. I'd ask the town manager to take back our points of view," Cllr Noel McCarthy said. "If not it'll be left here as a white elephant," Cllr John Murphy warned.
Cllr Seamus Coleman felt Fermoy isn't in a bad position, compared to other areas. He said though that, six months out from the abolition of town councils and the emergence of the new authorities "It's kind of farcical for staff not to know where they will be in six months time. The Minister needs to get his finger out and tell people where they'll be located. It's very hard on staff and future councillors."
Cllr Colette Dolan Moore agreed. "I feel for staff. They're in 'no man's land', she said.
Acting town manager, Niall Healy, promised their comments would be brought back to the transition team. "The county council have invested heavily here. It is a flagship building," he said. He had no doubt but that it would figure in future plans. "What the breakdown in services will be remains to be seen," he told them.
Mayor Olive Corcoran said that, apart from it being a beautiful building, she'd like to see workers kept nearer home rather than be sent to different parts of the county to work.
Cllr Coleman pointed out however that the whole object of the exercise was supposed to be distributing, rather than centralising services.
Friday 29th November 8:53am