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So far Anne has created 33 blog entries.

Council Matters at Dublin City FM

By |2014-03-14T13:15:18+01:00March 14th, 2014|Uncategorized|

  Local radio is a such a great asset for local communities and for people who want to share views and explore local issues. Thanks very much to Michael Fitzgerald at Dublin City FM for inviting me to take part in the "Council Matters" programme.  You can watch our conversation above or click here:  

Water Taxes & Water as a Human Right: Concerned Citizens come Together in Europe

By |2014-03-14T12:27:35+01:00March 14th, 2014|Uncategorized|

Irish citizens are waiting anxiously to see what they will have to pay when the new water charges are fixed. We have been promised a consultation about the level of those charges, and about the level of ‘free’ allowance for each person. Water is a basic human need and the allowances and charges must reflect that. In the meantime, European citizens (including Irish citizens) have put down a marker for the EU about the right to water, using the new tool for participatory democracy in Europe, the European Citizens’ Initiative (ECI). A [...]

Who Will You Trust to Represent You in the Local Elections 2014?

By |2014-02-05T10:32:55+01:00February 5th, 2014|Uncategorized|

Trust in elected representatives is a basic necessity in a healthy democracy.  All around the world we see what happens when trust breaks down, when people feel let down, when their expectations have not been met and their hopes are undermined. Trust in politicians is especially hard to build and easy to breach. Politicians who squander the people’s trust do serious harm to the fabric of society. My experience canvassing as an Independent for the local elections 2014 in the Dundrum area is that people feel a sense of helplessness and frustration. [...]

Do We Need the New Dun Laoghaire Library and Cultural Centre ?

By |2014-02-05T10:13:21+01:00February 5th, 2014|Uncategorized|

Anyone listening to Pat Kenny’s Newstalk programme last Monday (27th of January) will have heard a local businessman who was very annoyed about the new Dun Laoghaire Library and Cultural Centre.  He questioned the need for the building, the cost, and the lack of influence of the local Councillors on the decisions about the library and its services. This project was commissioned back in 2009 and it will cost around €36 million euros. It will have the library itself, a café, meeting rooms, a performance space, and an art gallery. From the pictures [...]

Our Community, Our Taxes, Our Priorities – The Idea of Participatory Budgeting

By |2014-01-28T22:20:48+01:00January 28th, 2014|Uncategorized|

Participatory Budgeting (PB) is a big name for a simple idea – that local people should be involved in making decisions on how a percentage of their local taxes are spent. It gives local people a way of deciding on and selecting projects and services for their neighbourhood.  Residents and community groups make proposals and decide together which projects get priority in their area for the funds that are available to them. PB began in Brazil in the 1980s, in the city of Porto Alegre, as a way of making democracy and [...]

Knowing Our Area – Dun Laoghaire Rathdown

By |2014-01-27T15:59:13+01:00January 23rd, 2014|Uncategorized|

Planning well for the people in our Dun Laoghaire Rathdown area means having good information about the profile of the people and their needs. There is really valuable information drawn from the 2011 Census in a report commissioned by the Southside Partnership DLR - Have a look HERE. For Example…. DLR is the most affluent local authority in the State, though there are several areas and groups experiencing disadvantage DLR has the highest rate of personal computer ownership in the country and second highest rate of broadband connectivity 14.5% of people in [...]

Dun Laoghaire Rathdown Budget 2014 – What is in there?

By |2014-01-27T16:02:52+01:00January 23rd, 2014|Uncategorized|

The Dun Laoghaire Rathdown Budget 2014 was passed by the Council on Thursday 9th of January. The budget provides just over €165 million euros in 2014 for services including housing, roads, community grants, business supports, arts and cultural projects, education and many other programmes. It is great to hear that DLR is going to set up a refuge on a pilot basis for women and children who need to get away from domestic violence. The refuge will have four self-contained units and will be run in partnership with the Sonas, the Domestic [...]

Local Government Reform Bill 2014

By |2014-01-27T16:07:29+01:00January 17th, 2014|Uncategorized|

Do major changes really lie ahead for local government? The Local Government Reform Bill proposes major changes to our system of Local Government.  The Bill was introduced to the Oireachtas last October by the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government, Phil Hogan, T.D.  It will become law shortly.  The Bill will mean that several county and city councils are merged, it gets rid of town and borough councils, and proposes a whole new set of structures at municipal, local and regional level. Minister Hogan referred to the Bill as bringing [...]

Fair and Transparent Use of Our Tax

By |2014-01-27T16:09:50+01:00January 17th, 2014|Uncategorized|

I Will Work For: Fair distribution of Council resources across the Dun Laoghaire Rathdown Council area A proportion of the Council’s annual budget to be set aside each year for projects decided on by residents in each Council area, in line with their priorities, and establishing a system to make that happen. A clear strategy through which the Council will use its powers to vary or amend the level of the Local Property Tax as needed.

Great Local Community Services to Meet Our Changing Needs

By |2014-01-27T16:11:26+01:00January 17th, 2014|Uncategorized|

I truly believe that Council services should respond to the range of local needs by designing services in partnership with the community with a focus on providing truly great local community services. I Will Work For: Profiling community needs to inform the planning of services Further education and training opportunities targeted to local need Plans to support unemployed young people to find and create local opportunities for employment, training or entrepreneurship Support services to ensure that all groups can be part of local community life Business supports to invigorate job creation in [...]

Imaginative, Sustainable Local Planning

By |2014-01-27T16:12:57+01:00January 17th, 2014|Uncategorized|

Safe, attractive neighbourhoods and vibrant, inclusive communities are at the heart of local life. Local planning services work best when they are designed around communities, where people can identify their particular concerns and help to plan for improvements. We need imaginative community planning with the people that live in our area – for example, young people should be involved in creating the public spaces and services that they need. Let’s focus on what’s important to us – from our local environment, to cultural and social amenities, to supporting local businesses. I Will [...]

Real Local Democracy

By |2014-01-27T16:14:31+01:00January 17th, 2014|Uncategorized|

Real local democracy means that local residents and groups have a meaningful say in what happens in their area and make the important choices about their community. There must be a new commitment to citizen participation at local level. In the digital age, good communication and easy access to information is a right. I Will Work For: Regular, accessible information about the work of the Council for all local residents Smart and active use of social media for information, participation and debate on local issues Consultation and engagement with children and young [...]