Draft bud­getary plan an ‘ab­so­lute in­sult to the peo­ple of Bray’

Bray People - - FRONT PAGE -

MEM­BERS of Bray Mu­nic­i­pal District ap­proved a draft bud­getary plan last week, which they called ‘far­ci­cal’.

Chief Ex­ec­u­tive of Wick­low County Coun­cil Frank Cur­ran was present at the meet­ing.

‘It’s an ut­ter and ab­so­lute in­sult to the peo­ple of Bray,’ said Cllr Joe Be­han. ‘We have €71,000 to spend and the peo­ple of Bray con­trib­ute un­told mil­lions in prop­erty tax to the cof­fers of Wick­low County Coun­cil.

‘ There were only two of us here when we had Bray Ur­ban District Coun­cil and were re­spon­si­ble for our own in­come and ex­pen­di­ture,’ said Cllr Be­han. ‘ The sooner pol­icy is changed and we are given power to raise fi­nance lo­cally to towns the size of Bray the bet­ter. It’s out­ra­geous. It’s al­most a waste of time to be talk­ing or ar­gu­ing about €71,000. It’s a drop in the ocean com­pared to what peo­ple in this district are pay­ing out. Two or three years ago we didn’t ac­cept the bud­get on prin­ci­pal, be­cause it’s a farce.’

Cathaoir­leach Cllr Christo­pher Fox said that he agreed with Cllr Be­han. ‘ This whole process is far­ci­cal re­ally,’ he said. ‘Not just the prop­erty tax, but park­ing fees, com­mer­cial rates. Bray Mu­nic­i­pal District is the cash cow of Wick­low County Coun­cil. Wick­low is get­ting a bad deal na­tion­ally and Bray is get­ting a bad deal within Wick­low. There is an ap­petite for more dis­cre­tionary fund­ing at Mu­nic­i­pal District Level. Mem­bers of all par­ties and none would agree. Bray money has fil­tered to the rest of the county.’

He said that he would pre­fer that com­mu­nity grant aid be done by the mu­nic­i­pal district. ‘It’s a very lo­calised scheme. It should be done by the Mu­nic­i­pal District, there would be more en­gage­ment.’

Mr Cur­ran said that much of the bud­get is fixed, in terms of salaries, for ex­am­ple, or road main­te­nance.

Mem­bers voted to ap­prove the bud­get. Cllr Oliver O’Brien and Cllr Michael O’Con­nor ab­stained.

Coun­cil­lors heard in pre­vi­ous years that if they did not ap­prove, the county man­ager could im­pose the bud­get in any event.

Cllr Christo­pher Fox.

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