Anger at revised electoral areas in county Cork

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County councillors representing north-west Cork have reacted angrily to the redrawing of electoral areas by the Local Electoral Boundary Commission, with a senior council official saying the fall-out from it “will present challenges” to the local authority.

Standing orders were suspended at a meeting of the council’s Northern Division yesterday after Fianna Fáil councillor Bernard Moynihan claimed those who had redrawn the municipal district areas in the county “couldn’t have been beyond the Red Cow roundabout” and obviously knew nothing about parts of rural Cork.

He was furious that the boundary commission has recommended that large swathes of Duhallow are to be transferred from the Kanturk municipal district to the Macroom municipal district.

This includes all of Millstreet town and villages such as Kiskeam, Boherbue, Ballydesmond, Banteer, Knocknagree, Cullen, Rathcoole, and Kilcorney.

These areas are synonymous with north Cork and Duhallow and not with the Muskerry [Macroom] area,” said Mr Moynihan. “In my view, the people who are drawing the boundary have never been outside of the Red Cow roundabout.

He said he was worried that shifting them into another municipal district could reduce services to these areas which were the “structurally weakest” in the county and were already struggling to fill their schools and GAA teams.

“These communities are already fighting for survival and they are very concerned about this [the boundary commission’s recommendations],” he said.

Fianna Fáil councillor Gearoid Murphy said that, since the founding of the council in 1898, Millstreet has been in the Northern Division and if it was to be moved into the Macroom area it would be in the Southern Division.

He said the council had made a submission to the Local Electoral Boundary Commission opposing any transfer of the Duhallow area from the Kanturk municipal district into the Macroom municipal district.

Acting Northern Division manager Louis Duffy admitted that the boundary commission recommendation “will present the council with challenges”.

“We will have to look to see how we will adapt our management to handle it,” said Mr Duffy.

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