An Independent candidate in the Mayo County Council elections has thrown down the gauntlet to opponents with a pledge to donate 30 per cent of his council salary to worthy local projects.
Crossmolina’s Enda Lavelle said that the gesture represents “my firm commitment to the people of this area that I will serve them in a selfless manner” this week. He said: “Politicians got complacent in the good times. They lost the run of themselves. They got the impression that the people served them, not that they served the people. They seemed to think that people were lucky to even know them. But public representation is about serving the people. It should never stop being about that. I have always been committed to community, sporting, and economic life in my area, and I want to underline that still further by donating 30 per cent of my council salary to worthwhile local initiatives.”
Outlining why he is running for the local elections as an independent, Mr Lavelle said: “I am passionate about representing Crossmolina and the surrounding areas on Mayo County Council. It would be a huge honour, and something I have wanted to do for a long time. That desire to serve this area was the reason why I left Fine Gael even after being nominated to stand at the party’s selection convention for the forthcoming elections – I knew Crossmolina didn’t have enough support at regional level to secure my nomination, and I didn’t want to have to wait around for another five years to show the electorate my determination and enthusiasm.”
Speaking more about his plan to donate 30 per cent of his councillor’s salary, Mr Lavelle said: “My plan is to donate 30 per cent of my salary to initiatives that will yield results for this area. Twenty per cent of my salary will go to education and the promotion of positive mental health, and the other 10 per cent will be used to support local community projects. For example, I will hold events that promote entrepreneurship. Young people are crucial in any area. We must foster the development of useful life skills such as innovation, creativity, and teamwork so they can play their part in charting a better future for an area that has been dreadfully neglected for far too long.”