/ about Cllr Dermot Lacey

Cllr Dermot Lacey

Representing Pembroke-South Dock Ward on Dublin City Council
Dermot Lacey is a Labour Party Councillor for the Pembroke-South Dock Ward on Dublin City Council. Dermot has been a member of Dublin City Council since 1993, and lives in Beech Hill, Donnybrook.
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 / Cllr Dermot Lacey ƒ Representing Pembroke-South Dock Ward on Dublin City Council


Annual Report to Labour Dublin Bay South AGM

It is hard to believe that another year has gone. It was the year of a very difficult Local Elections campaign and it was hard to lose so many colleagues in May when the electorate took out their annoyance at Government decisions on Oisin, Henry, Gerry and James. Their record as Councillors and candidates is something that we can all be proud of. I was proud to have them as colleagues and wish them well for the future.

City Council Group:

Following the Local Elections I have continued to serve as Labour Group Leader. Despite a much reduced status we have punched way above our weight and successfully negotiated an agreement for the next five years with Sinn Fein, the Green Party and Independents.

A major task was to secure agreement on the City Budget for 2015 and in that context was particularly pleased to ensure that Sinn Fein voted for a City Budget for the first time in my experience on the Council. This was assisted by the new funding through the Local Property Tax and the first supportive Minister for the Environment in many years. There are however still serious issues surrounding the funding of Local Government in Dublin. The amount received via the LPT, the valuation of properties, the refusal to pay Rates on Government properties being the principle ones.

On the Council I Chair the Protocol Committee and am a member of the Planning and Finance Strategic Committees.

Housing Committee:

For the first part of the year I served as Chairperson of the Housing Committee. Progress was made on the complete overhaul of the Crampton buildings complex and work will soon start on Tom Kelly Flats, Charlemont Street. On the other hand we are still no further on the application by the Royal Hospital Voluntary Housing Association for a demolition and rebuild project for 25 units at Beech Hill Terrace. The role of the Department of the Environment in these areas needs to be challenged. The new “time on list” Allocations Policy is now in place and seems to be working. The bottom line however is that we need more Housing Units. In that respect I very warmly welcome the E2.2Billion secured by Labour in Government for social housing.

Association of Irish Regions and Southern and Eastern Regional Assembly:

I remain a member of the Southern and Eastern Regional Assembly and retain the post of Cathaoirleach of the Association of Irish Regions. Both have given me an insight into the need for a coherent Regional Policy in Ireland and to regret the missed opportunity for same in the Local Government “Reform” Bill.

External Bodies:

During the year I attended regular meetings of the VEC (now the Educational and Training Board) and its sub-committees, the Board of the Rathmines–Pembroke Partnership and the Commissioners of Irish Lights. Following the Local Elections I stepped down from these bodies. I remain active in the Association of Irish Local Government. I actively participated in the Herbert Park Users Forum, the Lansdowne Stadium Project Monitoring Committee and continued my role as Chairperson of the South Inner City Local Drugs Task Force.

Local Issues:

The Flood Protection plan for Ballsbridge and Donnybrook is making steady if too slow progress. We need now to look at similar for Strand Road in Sandymount. I have attended the AGM’s and other meetings organised by the Sandymount and Merrion Residents Association, Nutley Residents Association, Donnybrook, Terenure, Portobello, Milltown and am active in the Ringsend “Our Town” Initiative and worked with other bodies right across the area and of course followed up on the issues raised.

Miscellaneous:

The new changing pavilion in Herbert Park is now in place and work on the new Tea rooms and public toilets will start soon. A Conservation Masterplan will also be published shortly. New arrangements for the former DDDA area (Docklands) will shortly be implemented and preliminary work on the new City Development Plan will also commence.

It was a real pleasure to see Oisin Quinn as Lord Mayor open the Rosie Hackett Bridge and the unveiling of a memorial for former local Fine Gael TD the late Joe Doyle in Herbert Park.

Thanks:

Thanks are due to a number of people for their support. It was a pleasure to work with Mary, Oisin, Maria and Gerry on the City Council and Kevin, Ruairi and Ivana in the Oireachtas continue to do us proud. Congratulations to Ruairi on a stunning career as a Minister and TD for Dublin South East. I wish him all the best for the future. Congratulations too to Kevin on his elevation to Minister of State – I have no doubt but that he will do us proud. As ever thanks are due to Jill who puts up with me and my work.

However I take none of that for granted. The Local Elections were a challenge for us and too us. Very many fine Labour Councillors lost their seats due to circumstances outside their control. Joan and Alan have been excellent in how they have worked with this much reduced Labour Councillor team. There is a resource there and amongst those who lost that should not be ignored and wasted. The Irish people gave us an opportunity to right the economy and reform our public and political structures. We have done the first but both are important. We have a chance to transform Irish society – we should not be satisfied with just transforming the economy. With your support I was honoured to be re-elected to represent Pembroke –South Dock. That means I will now have represented the entire Dublin South East area at one stage or another. It is an honour I cherish and respect and hope to never let you down.

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