Fine Gael Town Councillor, Joe Neville, was elected to the chairmanship of Leixlip Town Council at the Council AGM on 7 June, writes Henry Bauress.
Cllr. Neville was elected in a 5-4 vote over independent, Denis McCarthy, who was recently co-opted to fill the seat vacated by Kildare North, Deputy Catherine Murphy.
Labour’s two and and Fine Gael’s three members cast the five votes and Cllr. Neville was elected.
Cllr. Neville replaced his brother, Tom, on the Town Council for Fine Gael and his elected was watched by his father, retired Garda Supt. Tom Neville.
Outgoing chairperson, Sean Purcell (Labour) said he really enjoyed himself this year compared to his first term as chairperson. He thanked Siobhan and Karen on the Town Clerk staff, in particular, for their help.
Councillors paid tribute to Cllr. Purcell’s fairness and the manner in which he carried out the role.
Cllr. Neville said he was “very honoured and never saw himself wearing the gold chain.”
He said: “The future of Leixlip is very important to me and there will be difficult times. We may have to work smarter and work leaner.”
Cllr. Colm Purcell was elected vice-chairman after being proposed by Cllr. Pat Burke Walsh.
Cllr. McCarthy proposed Cllr. Anthony Larkin for that position as well.
Cllr. Bernard Caldwell (FF) said they should enable people who never served as chairperson an opportunity to serve. Cllr. Caldwell said he was not trying to cause a row but he thought it would be a good thing.
Cllr. Theresa Byrne, who chaired the Council before Cllr. Sean Purcell said she was fifteen years on the Council before she got an opportunity to stand in the chair.
Cllr. Caldwell replied there should be “a new era.” Cllr. Byrne responded that the “new era will be the next election.”
Cllr. Shane Fitzgerald, who was congratulated on his work on some of the sub-committees, in particularly for moving the Guinness related events around 24 September, said the “system was a farce.”