Kildare Boundary Submissions

The constituency review is currently underway for local electoral boundaries as I spoke about previously. The committee is presently accepting submissions although this closes on Friday week (14th March).

I have been doing some background work on my own submission although have not got around to uploading it yet. I will do so in the next week and publish here when I do.

The review body is split into two groups, one considering Dublin and city councils, the other looking at county council areas. Kildare of course, falls under the latter category. There are three headline items under the review terms of reference, namely to align Dáil and council boundaries, to remove 3-seater electoral areas, and to maintain existing numbers of councillors constant within each council. The first two make sense although the last caused some disappointment as it means areas like Kildare will still have a much higher councillor-population ratio than elswhere, as the population growth in the county has not been matched by increased local representation.

Looking at the website, there have been 22 submissions received to date on the county side. Regarding Kildare, FG’s Tony O’Donnell has an excellent submission where he has performed virtual alchemy to bring all the current electoral areas back into line. He has redistributed population across the various wards to ensure an even councillor-constituent ratio whilst also observing the review terms of reference and all backed up with solid scientific argument.

Naas Town Councillor, Darren Scully, makes the other Kildare submission received to date. Darren’s submission recognises the influx of population into the northern end of the Naas ward and the disconnect of the community in the southern end. He argues for an extra seat bringing the LEA from 5 to 6 while simultaneously arguing for the removal of Ballmore/Kilcullen from the Naas LEA. Whilst both points have merit individually, taken together I’m not sure they make sense – surely it’s one or the other. It’s hard to find logic around losing half the ward AND gaining an extra seat at the same time, however politically desirable it may be. Of course the good people of the Naas LEA would be extremly well represented if this was to happen and there’d be no complaints from me either!

My own submission, though I’ve yet to frame it, will be to align the Dáil and LEA boundaries for the Naas area which is in keeping with the review terms of reference. This revision would see a truncation of the current LEA at the Kildare South border, dropping the Kilcullen/Ballymore end but including the Newtown ED around Punchestown which recently moved into the Kildare North consituency. I would consider pulling Bodenstown ED fully into Naas LEA, which is currently split between Naas and Clane and I would give serious thought to Caragh staying as is. Despite being Kildare South, culturally Caragh sits in the Naas hinterland and the case could be made for unform representation.

Anyway less blogging more action, I must get my act together and get that submission in, or it will all be academic!

3 Replies to “Kildare Boundary Submissions”

  1. Tony O'Donnell

    Thanks for the kind comments James! I look forward to seeing your own submission.

    You’ll also be happy to know that in a spirit of bipartisanship, I’ve given a copy of my work to the local FF cumann rúnaí here in Kildare Town!

  2. James Lawless Post author

    Saw your submission Dan. Had a look over it some good work there. Was surprised you’d gone for Dublin though – thought it would be one your stomping grounds down in Limerick or Kerry?!

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