Mayo County Council should increase its services — Flynn

In a discussion surrounding Mayo County Council’s corporate plan, which spans a five year period from 2010 to 2014, Fine Gael councillor Peter Flynn suggested that the council should increase its range of services, due to the scaling back of other government agencies, with Mayo County Council taking on these additional services so everything is dealt with “under one umbrella”.

The Westport councillor’s comments were made at Thursday morning’s cultural, education, heritage, and corporate affairs SPC, where director of services Joe Loftus explained to members that the corporate plan, which has received submissions from the public following its advertisement, will be adopted in December and therefore submissions from the SPC in relation to a mission statement, corporate and supporting goals should be furnished.

Cllr Joe Mellett said that addressing disability should be the main goal of the new corporate plan so that Mayo County Council can deliver a better life for people living in Mayo with a disability. The Swinford councillor also said that a suggestion box should be placed in the foyer of the council offices so that staff can place their views on how the council could be more efficiently run, with these suggestions then examined by this SPC and actions taken on them.

Cllr Flynn concurred with Cllr Mellett’s idea that staff should have an input on the day to day running of the council especially in these “difficult times” when “every angle” should be examined, and also agreed that Mayo should become an accessible county for those with disabilities.

The Westport councillor said he has no doubt that there will be more consolidation of other government bodies and that now is the time for Mayo County Council to “pitch for this extra work”. Cllr Flynn gave the example of housing in the county as the HSE, tenancy boards, social welfare agencies all deal with housing, whereas the county council should deal with all aspects of it.

Cllr Flynn also said that electronic delivery of the council services should be increased and referred to the exceptional online planning service which is already in operation.

Chair of the SPC, Cllr Al McDonnell, said that the Jackie Clarke collection should be promoted by the SPC to generate more national and international tourism to the county, with Cllr Margaret Adams adding that Mayo should also secure other prominent collections such as the Helen Hooker-O’Malley collection.

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