Sinn Féin spokesperson on environment, community and local government, Brian Stanley TD, has today said he, “welcomed the Council of Europe Report calling on the government to revise local government legislation.”
Responding to the Congress of Local & Regional Authorities report, Stanley said;
“The report urges the government to revise its current local government legislation in order to devolve more power to local authorities.
“The Council’s report underlines what Sinn Féin has said for some time. It says very clearly that local authorities, ‘Only manage a modest amount of public affairs.’ Minister Hogan continues on this path. The current Local Government Bill will only further centralise power in the Customs House. The bill does not devolve one extra power to local councils.
“Sinn Féin want to see strong local government with real power, real decision making powers which are adequately funded through progressive taxation and rates. We believe power must be devolved from central government to local authorities and the balance of power shifted from City and County Managers to elected councillors. These devolved powers should include education, waste management, environment, housing, water services and roads from government departments to local authorities and district councils including.
“Sinn Féin supports strong City, County and local district councils with devolved powers that are democratic, accountable and deliver local services in an efficient cost effective way.
“This report should be read and acted upon by Minister Hogan. His current Local Government Bill belongs to a bye gone era. It is now time for real, radical reform of local government.”