A group of people from Tramore were so outraged by local Councillors “backtracking” on an agreement regarding the method of electing a Town Mayor that they have established a protest petition.
Placed in three shops in the town last Friday, one of the lists “disappeared” in the interim, but by midday on Tuesday there were about 200 signatures on the other two – in Red Lane boutique at The Cross and Kelly’s Classics drapery at Summerhill.
That’s according to Catherine Keighery of Red Lane, one of those who instigated the protest which she said was aimed at giving “ordinary Joe Soaps” an opportunity to vent their anger and frustration. She emphasised that those behind the move, including herself, had no political party affiliations, nor were they prompted by feelings of support for any particular councillor.
The petition is to remain available for signatures for another couple of weeks and will be handed over to Town Clerk John O’Sullivan prior to the next monthly meeting of the Council on July 7.
The situation is that last April the Town Council decided unanimously to recommend to the incoming Council that the Mayor be elected on the basis of votes garnered in the June 5 local elections.
Under such an arrangement Joe Conway, who topped the poll, would have been elected Mayor and the next four, in order, would hold the office for the remaining years of the Council’s lifespan.
But instead, returned councillors Lola O’Sullivan, Ann Marie Power and Pat O’Callaghan backtracked on the April decision and elected the latter under the terms of a Fine Gael / Labour pact.
Ms Keighery said she knew of many voters, Fine Gael supporters among them, who believed their votes counted towards election of Mayor and they felt betrayed. “It has to do with honesty and integrity which people demand, particularly in the current climate”, she commented.