Dramatic twist sees Donegal Council budget adopted

Donegal County Council Crest

Donegal County Council Crest

Donegal County Council has adopted a revenue budget for 2014, based on adjustments presented by independent Cllr. John Campbell and negotiated with Fine Gael and independent councillors.

Fears that the council would be dissolved and powers handed over to an interim administrator appointed by Minister for the Environment Phil Hogan slip away.

Donegal Mayor, independent Cllr. Ian McGarvey, cast the deciding vote when the council vote was tied 14-14. Fianna Fáil Cllr. Rena Donaghhey, who was in the council chambers earlier in the meeting, had left before the budget vote.

Cllr John Campbell, the independent, supported Fine Gael and Labour and tweeted a short time ago that he would issue a statement “in the morning”.

Sinn Féin have attacked Fianna Fail and the independent Thomas Pringle - Deputy Pádraig MacLochlainn tweeting: “Serious questions for Fianna Fáil and Thomas Pringle team after this Donegal county council budget shambles. Effective opposition?”

This was day four of an attempt to agree Donegal County council’s draft 138m budget and having failed so far to get agreement, time was running out now, with midnight the deadline for adoption of the budget.

Earlier in the meeting Liam Ward, meetings administrator and director of service for housing and county services, informed councillors that unless today’s meeting is concluded by midnight it will have gone beyond the prescribed period for adoption of a budget.

“All resolutions relating to that budget must be considered and passed before 12 midnight,” Mr. Ward said.

Mr. Ward said, “I think it is fair to say if the budget is not adopted we are then in hands of the minister who may decide then by ministerial order the next steps involved.”


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