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End of an era for councils

This week the people of Newry and Mourne will see the historic end of Newry and Mourne District Council as we know it. Newry and Mourne Council will merge with Down District Council to form a new Super Council. With this in mind we spoke to Eddy Curtis, current Director of Administration, to find out exactly what it means for constituents and if Newry will still have an acting Mayor of its own. “Full meeting of the Council will be held in Down because Newry doesn’t have the facility to manage the 41 councillors and Council Officials,” said Mr Curtis. The Council which has been based between Monaghan Row and Greenbank in Newry will see some services move out of the city, further afield to Down as Newry doesn’t even have a Civic Centre. Because of the Review of Public Administration, which was issued by the Northern Ireland Executive in June 2002, with the remit of reviewing the arrangements for the accountability, development, administration and delivery of Public Services in Northern Ireland, expenditures are under scrutiny and Mr Curtis has assured that the building of a Civic Centre in Newry will take precedence in the next coming months. “The Council are looking to build a Civic Centre as a priority under the RPA, said Mr Curtis. The Merge of the new council district will see Newry Mourne and Down become the third largest council in Northern Ireland and thus serve over 171,500 residents. He added that, “Newry will also be seeking borough status which will allow the new chairman to have Mayor status and this will mean we will have a Mayor of our own. With many councillors stepping down as they feel their time serving the public has come to an end, most feel that the new council is a visionary for better service. I feel this new super council is a more brilliant opportunity to provide a more efficient service to the rate payers of Newry, Mourne and Down.”


Newry Democrat

31st March 2015