By Nicola Corless
WELL-known community development worker, Adrian Feeney, has announced his intention to run in the local elections later this month.
The Gort resident will compete for votes in South Galway, with sitting councillors Fine Gael’s Bridie Willers from Grannagh, Independent Michael Fahy from Caherduff and Fianna Fáil’s Gerry Finnerty from Ballymurphy.
Mr Feeney will run as an independent candidate in the eight-seat Loughrea Electoral Area.
“I decided to run on Monday,” he told The Clare Champion. “While I will run in the Loughrea Electoral Area, I want to focus mainly on Gort and its surroundings,” he added.
This will be Mr Feeney’s third attempt to gain a seat on Galway County Council, having run in 2004 and 2009. He also ran for a Dáil seat in the Galway East constituency in 2007.
“The recession has hit Gort particularly badly. It has been widely reported on. This has highlighted how desperately we need a good candidate. We are sick of the same rhetoric. Not only has our town not improved over the past five years, it has got worse. It is now recognised as being the worst town in Ireland affected by the recession,” he said, referring to the recently published CEDRA report findings on the town.
“We have a Fine Gael and Fianna Fáil councillor in this area and the party line hasn’t worked here in Gort. It is time to start thinking for ourselves. I am urging people to give someone else a vote, give someone else a chance. This is not a personal thing about other candidates but I am a real alternative and I want people to give me a chance,” he outlined.
Mr Feeney currently works with Galway Rural Development and Leader. He is involved in the local St Patrick’s Day Parade Committee, the No Name Club and the chamber of commerce.
“I know about getting grants and starting businesses and all of that kind of thing. Anyone who wants to know what I have done in the area, despite not being elected, it goes into the hundreds of thousands. I am not a fly by night, I am a community man through and through,” he said.
“Ask anyone who knows me, no matter what I do I give it 100%. Let’s put Gort back on the map and readdress issues from the recession and get people back working. Don’t let the town go down any more because it will get to a point of no return,” he added.
Mr Feeney said, if he is elected, he plans to be a full-time public representative.
“I am committed to this community, I am here and my family are here. I will continue to be committed to this community because the needs of our community have to be addressed. The best way to do this is to get me elected, so I can do this on a full-time basis and get our town back on the map and with no false promises,” he concluded.