Ibec chief urges Coveney to bring in direct mayoral elections soon

Ibec chief urges Coveney to bring in direct mayoral elections soon
James Winters, IBEC Cork Regional President welcomes Simon Coveney TD, Tanaiste, to IBEC HQ at Knockrea House, Douglas Road. for a briefing on the National Deveelopment Plan 2040.

A group which represents over 7,500 businesses and organisations in Ireland has called for a directly elected mayor in Cork.

Ibec said the work of an elected mayor who can coordinate a plan for growth and provide better urban governance could be crucial for the future of the city.

It was announced by the Government late last year that people in Dublin and Cork would be given the opportunity to vote on a change in local governance that would see a directly elected mayor serve a five-year term, with a remit similar to that of a local authority manager.

However, the government has been vague on the timeframe of the change, which may not be introduced until 2024.

At a meeting with Tánaiste Simon Coveney this week, business heads stressed the need for speedy delivery of important infrastructure in Cork city Ibec Cork Regional President James Winters said a directly elected mayor could be crucial to driving policies to make Cork a prime location for investment.

“Later this year, the people of Cork will be asked by Government to vote on a proposal for a directly elected mayor for the city,” he said.

“A mayor, elected by the people, is a move that Ibec has been calling for. The remit that a directly elected mayor will have will be crucial as they will coordinate and drive policies to make Cork more liveable. This is vital to drive Cork’s growth and for better urban governance."

Mr Winters also called for infrastructure projects and housing provisions promised by the Government in Cork to be progressed as soon as possible, including the Cork to Limerick motorway and the Dunkettle, N28 and N22 schemes.

“The National Development Plan gives clear commitment to upgrading these roads. This investment will improve accessibility, eliminate daily congestion challenges and help improve the attractiveness of our city to investors and mobile talent," he said.

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