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A view of the streetscape in Kilrush

Kilrush to lose out on €1m in revenue?

THE abolishment of Kilrush Town Council will result in a €1m revenue loss to the West Clare capital over five years, outgoing member, Councillor Ian Lynch, has claimed.
Town councils are to be abolished after the May 23 Local Elections and, in fact, the last Kilrush Town Council meeting will be held next Thursday. The town council was established in 1885.
“Six people will no longer be working in the Kilrush office because of the local government reform,” said Councillor Lynch, who is an independent candidate.
“The Government’s plan to reform local government, which they call Putting People First, will have a detrimental effect on the town of Kilrush. The implementation of the plan by Clare County Council, will see a reduction of council employees working in Kilrush and a loss of up to €1m, which will no longer be spent in the West Clare economy.”
Councillor Lynch claimed the average weekly spend of a family with two children reaches approximately €320. He also suggested that revenue obtained from town council employees attending weddings or similar occasions, will also be lost to Kilrush.
“Attending a wedding could cost anything up to and over €300 when you consider getting the hair and nails done or buying items like dresses or high heels,” Councillor Lynch said.
Other areas he believes will no longer benefit from the loss of the town council employees include childcare. He calculates that each employee could spend up to €24,440 annually in Kilrush or West Clare, which, over the lifetime of the council, would amount to €733,200.
In addition, Councillor Lynch says the absence of councillors’ combined expenses of approximately €54,000 annually, will also hit the town’s economy over the next five years.
“This money has been taken out of the town and will no longer be spent locally. This will have a huge impact on local businesses, which may lead to further business closure in Kilrush,” he warned.
“At a time when businesses throughout the country are struggling, the loss of approximately €1m to the local economy will be devastating. If the West Clare economy endures any more hardship, I am very fearful that further businesses will close, which will in turn result in further loss of revenue from rates to Clare County Council,” he forecast.
Councillor Lynch maintains Clare County Council should decentralise some services from Ennis to Kilrush. “Clare County Council has an opportunity to help local business by decentralising services, such as water, to the Kilrush office. This would ensure some money will stay in the local economy and businesses will survive,” he said.

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