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South Kilkenny residents could find themselves in Waterford as boundary review published

It appears over 4,500 South Kilkenny people could soon find themselves in Waterford – and if all changes are approved – local councils could be in line for a change too.

Despite rumours that it would be summer before the recommendations of the boundary committee were known, the report has now been published.

It recommends that what they call the existing “impractical boundary” is moved in favour of Waterford.

19,131 public submissions were received by the three-person committee – and out of those 19,096 opposed any change.

The report will now go before the Dáil for members to vote on.

What recommendations does the report make?

Chapter 6 of the report deals with recommendations/next steps and outlines the findings of the committee.

“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.”

Loss Of Income, Property Tax and Rates

One of the concerns on the Kilkenny side was the loss of income of rates from commercial and industrial-zoned lands within the area of interest. These are also dealt with in the report’s recommendations.

“The extent of revision is primarily confined to areas dominated by Residential land-use zonings. However, there are some Commercial and Industrial uses that deliver Commercial Rates income to Kilkenny County Council. Loss of Residential Property Tax and Commercial Rates income will require to be compensated to Kilkenny County Council by Waterford Council.”

“This will be balanced to some extent by the removal of responsibility for cost of delivery of services for Community Development (including the branch library in Ferrybank) in Housing and for Transport-associated expenditure in maintenance and upkeep. The Committee acknowledges that Kilkenny County Council will have to carry the bulk of in-house delivered services due to the retention of staff and due to the requirement to keep or relocate services for the Piltown Municipal District currently sourced from the Ferrybank area.”

With the publication of the report, the next step will see the report discussed at length in front of the Oireachtas. A timetable for this discussion is unknown at present.

Waterford Boundary Committee Report

You can download a copy of the Waterford Boundary Committee report here.

With this story developing, we’ll have plenty of discussion on air on Thursday morning’s KCLR Live.