The voters of county Longford have the power in their hands as they will decide the fate of fifty-seven election hopefuls on Super Friday.
Thirty-four candidates will go in search of capturing one of the eighteen seats available on a completely restructured Longford County Council.
There are nine candidates, including just one from Longford in the guise of prominent business man James Morgan, in the Longford/Westmeath by-election aiming to win the Dáil Éireann seat left vacant following the death of the late Nicky McFadden TD.
While in the sprawling European Parliament Midlands-North-West constituency, fourteen candidates go to post in a bid to secure one of the four seats available.
So we’ve 57 candidates vying for 23 seats. It means 34 will be unsuccessful. And the intense drama, tears and cheers, will unfold at count centres in Kenagh, Newtownforbes and Castlebar over the weekend.
Unlike the last local elections on June 5, 2009, there will be no election to fill the nine seats on both Longford and Granard Town Councils as they have been abolished.
Longford Co Co made a provision of €140,000 for the running of the local elections in its 2014 expenditure budget and with the reduction of county councillors from 21 to 18, together with retirements, a gratuity provision of €500,000 was made.
In the ‘09 election, Longford boasted four electoral areas, but following the Local Electoral Area (LEA) Boundary Report, it was carved up into three electoral areas - Ballymahon, Granard and Longford, and each will elect six representatives.
Longford elected 10 Fine Gael, 8 Fianna Fáil and 3 Independent councillors in 2009. FG secured control of the local authority with support from Independent Cllr Paul Connell.
FG have 12 candidates on Friday, FF 10, Sinn Féin have 3, Independents 9 and Labour aren’t represented. Sixteen outgoing county councillors and five town councillors are in the race.