I read with great interest a recent article titled “Sherlock: County Councillors not doing enough work” which was published in the Evening Echo on Thursday 1st September last.
I would like to remind Deputy Sherlock that there is no longer a sole electoral area for Mallow as referred to by the Deputy or indeed a Town Council for that matter for the Town since the Government that Deputy Sherlock was a part of abolished both of them in 2014. The new representational area is now call the Kanturk/Mallow Municipal District Area which encompasses five towns namely Buttevant, Kanturk, Mallow, Millstreet and Newmarket. It also covers dozens of villages and rural areas totaling to an overall population of nearly 50,000 people. That’s near enough to the size of some Dáil constituencies. Deputy Sherlock and the Government he was part of also reduced the number of councillors representing this area at that time (2014) dropping from nine councillors to six which evidently lead to that “gap” the Deputy refers to in the article.
I can only speak for myself but I am sure my five other colleagues in the Kanturk/Mallow Municipal District will agree with me when I say that we were never busier in our duties as local representatives serving the needs of our constituents. We are continuously dealing with the pothole requests and the housing needs of families that Deputy Sherlock refers to and many more local issues that comes to us on a regular basis. It is regrettable that Deputy Sherlock thinks that he is beneath helping the ordinary people of Mallow with local issues, when alot of these issues arrive from the lack of national intervention.
I would like to point out a few facts to the Deputy in case it has got lost in his pile of local issues on his desk:
- Deputy Sherlock receives a basic annual salary of €87,500 to represent his constituents locally and nationally – I and other councillors get a basic annual salary of €16,500
- Deputy Sherlock receives state funding to operate his constituency office(s) which are also exempt from rates – Councillors don’t get any funding! I operate one from my home for my constituents.
- Deputy Sherlock gets full payment for the provision of a secretary – Councillors do not get any secretarial allowance!
- Deputy Sherlock also get full payment for the provision of a Parliamentary Assistant – Councillors don’t get any assistants’!
I think on reflection, Deputy Sherlock’s office is more than equipped to deal with any local issue constituents may wish to raise. It is certainly resourced enough anyways.
It might just be time that Deputy Sherlock might now rise from his own “party silo” and work with other public representatives for the betterment of the Mallow area into the future.