Minister John Paul Phelan
The government is “actively considering” Municipal Districts for large urban areas – which could have a direct impact on Kilkenny City – with many in power of the view that larger towns and cities should not have been divided.
A review is ongoing at the minute on the issue of urban governance and there is a “strong body of opinion” in Government that larger urban centres should have greater autonomy.
Minister of State for Local Government, John Paul Phelan, told the Kilkenny People a decision on local area boundaries will be made in the next four to six weeks.
The review is “actively considering” Municipal Districts for large urban areas which could see a city like Kilkenny able to elect its own mayor without taking in large parts of the rural countryside.
Kilkenny City is split into east and west with six seats in both and each contains large areas of rural hinterland.
However this could be changed so that urban centres of population are within the same Municipal District.
The Kilkenny People understands that the general feeling at Government level is that larger towns and cities should not have been divided.
The review could propose a seven seat Kilkenny City local electoral area and a six seater for the area of Thomastown stretching from Graignamanagh to Callan and everything in between.
Legislation dictates that there is one councillor for every 4,000 people.
Kilkenny City has a population of about 28,000 and that would see the boundary stretch out as far as the ring road and would give a Kilkenny City MD a total of seven councillors.