Green Party Cllr Marianne Butler wants to see the €3 million reserve fund held by Dundalk Town Council spent in the town and not drained out of the council’s coffers when the town council is abolished in May.
When the town council goes after the spring elections, the money it holds in reserve will go into the exchequer of the new county council.
But Cllr Butler wants this money spent on the town of Dundalk.
“I want to see this reserve staying in this area,” Cllr Butler told last week’s council meeting. People in Blackrock, Haggardstown, Cooley, all have some claim to this money, but no way can Ardee or Drogheda claim it.
“I want it spent in this town, on the people who contribute to this town. This money needs to stay in Dundalk and we need to come up with a plan to use it before May.”
Fianna Fail Cllr Conor Keelan agreed. “Our reserve should remain in the town,” he said.
Green Party Cllr Mark Dearey pointed out that the reserve can also serve as loan security.
“We are not being ungenerous here,” he said. “The new municipal area will cover a larger area than the current town council district.”
However,Town Clerk Frank Pentony said all of the town council financial assets will transfer to the new Louth County Council body. “There will be an ongoing three-year capital programme which will come before the council every year for consideration.”
“and this programme will include the new municipal areas.”
The county manager said she understood the sentiments expressed, but there was no legal basis for the motion.