Dundalk Town Council was named Ireland’s top Town/Borough Council on Wednesday (Nov 9) at the eighth annual Chambers Ireland Excellence in Local Government Awards, held in association with the Department of Environment, Community & Local Government.
The Council was also joint winner of the sustainable environment award sponsored by the European Recycling Platform. This award was presented in respect of the Navvy Bank Biodiversity and Awareness Project.
Cllr Marianne Butler, Cathaoirleach, Dundalk Town Council, said: “It is always encouraging to see good work recognised and these most recent national awards come at a time when the members and officials of this Council are challenged to do more with less resources. In fact, the economic environment arguably makes effective local government more important than ever as we are the frontline of public representation and best placed to respond rapidly to emerging opportunities and threats to the town.”
Frank Pentony, Dundalk Town Clerk & Director of Services, Louth Local Authorities, said: “This is a great result for the team here and the external stakeholders that we work with on the Dundalk team each day. We’re particularly pleased that Dundalk received the overall award for top Town/Borough Council. Dundalk has a proven track record in sustainability with, for example, the application of smart technologies in care and residential settings now providing a national model for independent living by older people.
“The Council has also been to the fore with the Sustainable Energy Authority of Ireland in developing a sustainable energy zone while we also have an exemplar project deploying Smarter Travel to reduce school-related car journeys. Dundalk was also the first town to adopt the Business Improvement Districts (BIDS) model to deliver our Town Centre Commercial Manager’s Office while we also have an ongoing business incentive scheme. It is vital that we maintain all that is best about our town and protect natural assets and amenities while continuing to develop our links to the community.”
The awards were presented by Phil Hogan TD, Minister for the Environment, Community & Local Government, who said: “I am delighted that my Department is associated with the Chambers Ireland Excellence in Local Government Awards and how they showcase the admirable work that local authorities do. I would like to pass on my congratulations to all the winners and indeed all of the shortlisted applicants – the standard of projects this year was outstanding.”
Ian Talbot, CEO, Chambers Ireland, added: “These awards recognise and encourage local authorities who seek to do better despite tighter budgetary constraints and the wider economic challenges being felt throughout Ireland. Working with the Department of Environment, Community & Local Government, Chambers Ireland contributes to the development of efficient local government in Ireland by highlighting best practice and encouraging local authorities to achieve more for all of their stakeholders.”