- Local Government Act 2001
The Local Government Act, 2001 (No.37 of 2001) was enacted by the
Oireachtasof the Republic of Irelandon 21 July 2001. Most of the provisions of the act came into operation 1 January 2002.
According to the explanatory memorandum issued before the passing of the act, its purposes were to:
*enhance the role of the elected member,
*support community involvement with local authorities in a more participative local democracy,
*modernise local government legislation, and provide the framework for new financial management systems and other procedures to promote efficiency and effectiveness,
*underpin generally the programme of local government renewal.
Local government areas
The act established local government areas based on those already created by previous legislation. The types of areas listed in the act are:
Counties: Identical to the admimistrative counties established by the
Local Government (Ireland) Act 1898and modified by later legislation. The opportunity was taken to rename Tipperary (North Riding) and Tipperary (South Riding) as North Tipperaryand South Tipperaryrespectively.
Cities: These were the
County boroughs created by the 1898 act and later legislation, renamed. All the county boroughs except Galway had previously had the courtesy title of city by charter or letters patent.
Boroughs: The five existing non-county boroughs continued in existence. In addition it was recognised that
Kilkennycould continue to be called a city, in spite of being governed by a borough council and not being a former county borough.
Towns: The remaining town authorities, formerly known as
urban districts or towns with town commissioners, were all redesignated as towns.
A council was established for each of the local government areas with the title
county council, city council, borough council or town council.
Membership of councils
One of the most controversial aspects of the act was the abolition of the so-called "
dual mandate". This meant that members of the Oireachtas- Dáil Éireannand Seanad Éireanncould no longer be candidates for local authority elections.
Local Government Commission
The act established a Local Government Commission to oversee such matters as alteration of boundaries and the establishment and dissolution of local authorities.
* [http://www.oireachtas.ie/documents/bills28/acts/2001/a3701.pdf Local Government Act 2001 Text]
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