Limerick City and County Council has been named as Local Authority of the Year 2014 at Chambers Ireland’s Annual Excellence in Local Government Awards which were held in Dublin last night.
The local authority, which was established following the merger of Limerick City and County Councils in June of this year ,was named overall winner at the event in Ballsbridge, Dublin last night (Thursday) judged by a panel of experts working in the field of Local Government.
Limerick City and County Council also took home two other awards at the event including one for Limerick Smarter Travel which won the ‘Smarter Travel category’ and the amalgamation of Limerick City and County Councils which won the ‘Local Authority Innovation' award.
Cllr. Kevin Sheahan, Cathaoirleach of Limerick City and County Council said: “I am delighted that Limerick took home three awards including the overall prize and I’m particularly proud of the staff of Limerick City and County Council who have worked tremendously hard to make the amalgamation of both local authorities a success throughout the change process over the last number of years.
He continued: “This was the biggest change to have occurred in the history of local government in Limerick and the largest merger of its kind ever undertaken in the Republic of Ireland. I am delighted that Limerick has proven itself to be innovative in how it has handled the transformation and how it joined up processes, systems and technology across our 500 services to prepare for a new Council.”
Pat O'Neill, Project Manager, Limerick Smarter Travel said:
“On behalf of Limerick Smarter Travel, we’re delighted to win an Excellence in Local Government award. Our aim is to transform people’s travel behaviour and connect the four key hubs of Limerick City and suburbs by the development and promotion of sustainable modes of transport for those living, working and studying in these areas. It’s a great boost for us to be recognised for those achievements.”
Congratulating Limerick City and County Council, Ian Talbot, Chambers Ireland Chief Executive said, “While 2014 has been a year of hugely challenging change and transformation for local government, local authorities have embraced this opportunity to innovate and develop new approaches to sustaining and supporting their communities.
We’re delighted to award Limerick City and County Council the overall Local Authority of the Year award to recognise the transformational change that the organisation has undergone through the merger. There’s a lot of hard work that goes on at the heart of communities on a daily basis by local authorities and I want to particularly congratulate the staff in Limerick who make all these projects and activities happen.”
The Chambers Ireland Excellence in Local Government Awards are held annually in association with the Department of the Environment, Community and Local Government and sponsored by AECOM, EirGrid, The European Recycling Platform, Fáilte Ireland and Tipperary Crystal.
The awards were first held in 2004 to acknowledge and encourage best practice and constructive initiatives by local authorities and also to enhance the positive relationships that already exist between chambers, businesses and their respective local authorities.