The Kilkenny Journal

Thursday, 17th August 2017
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JOHN PAUL PHELAN TO RESIGN HIS SEAT OVER BOUNDARY CHANGE.

Deputy John Paul Phelan, whose home is in Ferrybank, has now stated that he will resign from the Fine Gael party, resign his Dail seat and run in the subsequent by-election as an Independent if the Fine Gael -led government transfers any part of South County Kilkenny into Waterford city. And he means it. 
If this were to happen he would win the subsequent by-election to regain his seat as he would be seen to be the champion of Kilkenny's cause and no other party or candidate would stand a chance up against him.

And it is not only over the South Kilkenny issue. John Paul has been the victim of Enda Kenny over his sincerely held pro-life views and his opposition to Kenny as Taoiseach bringing in more and more progressive acts of abortion. We were in Langtons of Kilkenny for the night of Enda Kenny's by-election visit there and saw how cool the Taoiseach was towards John Paul. Kenny has deliberately passed over John Paul for even the most junior ministerial position while less worthy TDs have been promoted by him to important ministries. The Taoiseach has been nothing less than vicious towards his South Kilkenny TD who in turn has never said a bad word about him. Indeed John Paul is a great support to the Fine Gael party as a decent and loyal party man throughout. It seems to be the Taoiseach's policy that no Fine Gael TD is allowed to hold pro-life views any more. Kenny seems to have turned into an Irish Herod where potential infants are concerned and it will do him no good at all as his newfound leftist friends will desert him like the rats they are.

Just look at the behaviour of Gilmore and Burton in the Dail yesterday - after Kenny could never do enough to further their social policies when they were in government with him only a wet day ago. John Paul Phelan can't be blamed if you consider Kenny's proposed alliance with Sinn Fein only the other day in the Dail - that Kenny had Chief Whip Regina Doherty fly a kite for only a couple of weeks previously. Kenny is a man who has indeed sold his soul to stay in power, and now he has come to shyte on John Paul in his native Kilkenny.

Even hardened Fianna Fail opposition feel sorry for John Paul and the amount of sheer ignorant viciousness that he has had to calmly put up with from the Taoiseach. It has helped that John Paul is a general calm, cool and even placid man, but even he has a point of no return when Kenny comes to pee on him in his own home ground of Ferrybank and cut off his vote supply thus terminating his career.

Here on the Kilkenny Journal we have followed it all and personally we have found Enda Kenny to be OK as far as we are concerned, so we have no axe to grind. And we have already stated here over the past year that Waterford city must have room to expand and develop.

But not at the price of some very serious Kilkenny Council investments in the area under threat as much of the funds for such investments have come over the years from the pockets of Kilkenny ratepayers up as far North as Urlingford! You can't just take and hand over one corporation's investments to another - but you can make a deal on undeveloped waste ground and the like and that is what any honest party in government should be doing if Kilkenny is to emerge with any justice at the end of this process.

The three-person commission is like a dictatorship, it's a really bad system, it is the worst whoever dreamed it up. That commission, it could be suspected, reported as they knew the government wanted them to - in the face of twenty thousand Kilkenny objections ! You can't call that democracy. You certainly can't force the 5,500 Kilkenny people involved to change their black and amber for the blue and white of the Decies - they won't have it and we would be surprised if they would ever pay rates to the Waterford authority without all of them having to be forced to do so through the courts. Because it is their cultural identity of the ages that is at stake, that they would be robbed of. They would all become ferocious anti-Fine Gael voters and who could blame them - and John Paul's would be the first head for the chopper - not that Kenny would give a Mayo hoot he is so much prejudiced against Deputy Phelan.

We hear government ministers preaching about the rights of Muslims - but what about the rights of a pro-life person like Deputy John Paul Phelan, that's what Kenny, Coveney and the government have to answer.

Neither side is bluffing. We believe that despite the injustice of it all Kenny and the government will indeed go ahead with the transfer of the disputed Kilkenny territory to Waterford if they can , that we now refer to sarcastically as the Sudetenland , and we also believe that John Paul will be true to his word , resign the party, resign his seat - and beat the socks off all-comers in the consequent election. The whole of Kilkenny regardless of affiliation will turn out to vote for John Paul and for our native sod. John Paul will not back off on a matter of principle, nor will he go the road quietly. he will not go gently into that dark night, but he will fight like a true son of the Black-and-Amber all the way and we will all back him to the hilt. Come on the Black-and-Amber, come on John Paul!

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It looks like there may be good news on the boundary front between Kilkenny and Waterford following a meeting of Fine Gael party members and councillors in South Kilkenny on Monday night.

The good news filtered out as a consolation after a disappointing weekend for Kilkenny on the hurling front. 

A little after 6pm, city councillor David Fitzgerald had suggested that the Kilkenny-Waterford boundary would ‘not change’ as per plans for an announcement by Minister for Housing, Planning and Local Government and sitting Fine Gael TD for Cork South Central, Simon Coveney.

That news was confirmed later on Monday night at a meeting in the Rhu Glenn.

Minister @simoncoveney says he will "not be implementing the recommendation to change the county boundaries". 

 

Minister @simoncoveney says while county boundary won't be changed he must ensure Waterford city is allowed "to grow into south Kilkenny".

STATEMENT FROM MINISTER SIMON COVENEY

“The report in relation to the Kilkenny/Waterford boundary is one of four such review processes initiated by former Minister for the Environment, Alan Kelly, TD. The committees were asked to carry out a review of the boundary between the respective local authorities and to make recommendations with respect to those boundaries and any consequential matters that they consider necessary in the interests of effective local government. The reports are advisory – I am not bound by their recommendations.”

“The recommendation in the Waterford/Kilkenny report to move the existing county boundaries has caused a lot of unease and concern in the area. This has been articulated directly to me by elected representatives and citizens through the consultation process on the National Planning Framework. The issue of identity, linked to county boundaries must be an important consideration.”

“I want to make clear now that I will not be implementing the recommendation to change the county boundaries. The county boundaries will remain as they are. Kilkenny will continue to be Kilkenny and Waterford will be Waterford.”

“Having made that decision, there is a responsibility on me now to ensure we have an appropriate management structure to allow Waterford City to grow into the South Kilkenny area. Whereas I don’t intend to implement the recommendation to move the county boundaries, I do intend to ensure that new management solutions are in place to facilitate the cohesive expansion of Waterford City, which will include areas of South Kilkenny. There is an onus on both Waterford and Kilkenny Councils to be open to imaginative and new local government solutions in this regard. I will work with the Chief Executives of both authorities and councillors to that end over the coming months.”

You can view previous stories connected to the boundary issue here.

RECOMMENDATIONS OF THE BOUNDARY COMMITTEE

In February of this year it was revealed that over the 19,131 public submissions received by the three-person boundary committee, 19,096 opposed any change. The committee, in its findings, recomended that the “impractical boundary” between Kilkenny and Waterford be moved in favour of Waterford.

“The Committee recommends that the Minister should extend the boundary of Waterford City and County Council into County Kilkenny by including the entire Electoral Area of Kilculliheen and those parts of the Electoral Areas of Aglish and Dunkitt contained within the Area of Interest that lie south of the of the N25 bypass.”

“The population living within the proposed boundary extension area in County Kilkenny is estimated at about 4,500. The effect of transferring this area to Waterford is likely to be an increase of one councillor in Waterford Metropolitan District and a reduction of two councillors in the Piltown Municipal District of Kilkenny County Council. As this would result in the membership of the Municipal District dropping below the statutory minimum of six elected members, it would be necessary to reconfigure all of the Municipal Districts within County Kilkenny.”

Read more on the original reports findings here.

 

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