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Proposed name of new council to be Causeway Coast and Glens

3 March, 2009

North Antrim Sinn Féin MLA Daithí McKay has welcomed the Local Government Boundaries Commissioner decision to accept Sinn Féin's proposal that the name of the new North-eastern council, encapsulating Ballymoney, Moyle, Coleraine and Limavady District Councils be changed from "Causeway Coast District Council" to "Causeway Coast and Glens District Council".

Mr McKay said:

"During the consultation period for the new local government districts Sinn Féin were the only party to call for the name of the council to be changed to take account of the fact that the Glens wards form part of the council area and the name of the Council should reflect that.

"The Glens is a key part of our tourism product here in North Antrim and the inclusion of the Glens in the new council name is something that would be extremely beneficial to the area.

"We also called for the proposed 'Stranocum' ward to be changed to 'Loughgiel and Stranocum' ward and I am glad to see that the Commissioner has accepted this proposal.

"It is regrettable however that the Commissioner chose not to revise the wards of Cloughmills and Rasharkin. Putting part of Rasharkin village in the Cloughmills ward is a ridiculous decision and we will be again asking the Commissioner to reconsider this move. There is also a need to look at the Ballycastle boundary to ensure that the urbanised area of the ward better reflects the urban area of the town.

"The refusal of the Commissioner to look at the inclusion of the Irish language in ward names in any way failed to take into account the views of many local communities who want to see Irish recognised and promoted. It is also regrettable that local opinion was ignored in this instance.

"Sinn Féin will continue to pursue these matters and will continue to oversee the introduction of a new council in this area which has equality safeguards and is inclusive. We have a veto in the Executive which we have used and will continue to use to uphold the rights and entitlements of all local ratepayers."

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