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27/07/2021

Peggy Nolan assumes Longford council hot seat for third time

Time for delivery: New cathaoirleach vows to hit ground running

Peggy Nolan assumes Longford council hot seat for third time

Cathaoirleach of Longford County Council Peggy Nolan

A state of the art skatepark, a public amenity area in the centre of Longford town and a community warden-just some of the chief targets set out by new County Council Cathaoirleach Cllr Peggy Nolan last week.

The long serving Fine Gael local politician assumed the chain of office from predecessor Cllr Paul Ross at the local authority'a annual general meeting last Wednesday.

It was the third time in Cllr Nolan's 22 year career in local politics to occupy the council's top position.

And true to form, the “mother of the chamber” as described by Cllr Seamus Butler wasted no time in rhyming out a string of targets over the next 12 months.

“It's (skateboarding) now an olympic sport and it behoves us to put in place a skatepark,” she told elected members.

“And we need to acquire land to put in place amenities that are badly needed in the centre of our county town.”

Cllr Nolan also alluded to Longford's ongoing regeneration drive, saying the onus was now on the council to back up a series of ambitious projects which have beenearmarked for the county.

“We (councillors) know what's in train but the public don't and it's time now that regeneration is very visible in town,” she added.

Cllr Nolan gave a firm undertaking to do her level best to improve the quality of life of all citizens over the next 12 months.

She also revealed her impact in the council hot seat was one that she was relishing as she paid tribute to her party colleague and outgoing cathaoirleach, Cllr Ross.

“Every time there was an issue, you were there for local and national media,” she told the father of three, terming his year as first citizen to be nothing short of “exceptional”.

She added, in turning to her fellow members: “I am only as good a leader as you allow me to be.

“I care about every elected member and all of the people who elected me.

“This is my home town, it's my home county and to me it's like my extended family.

“That's not said to garner votes or to get headlines, it's how I feel.

“What affects the people of this county, affects me and affects all of us.”

Cllr Nolan's elevation to the summit of Longford County Council ensured Fine Gael occupied both cathaoirleach and Leas cathaoirleach positions, courtesy of the election of Cllr Paraic Brady.

“Whatever you need and whenever you need it, I will be there,” he told councillors at last week's annual general meeting.

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