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Local Government Act, 2001

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Number 37 of 2001


LOCAL GOVERNMENT ACT, 2001


ARRANGEMENT OF SECTIONS

PART 1

Preliminary and General

Section

1.

Short title and collective citations.

2.

Interpretation generally.

3.

Construction of enactments.

4.

Regulations, orders and directions.

5.

Repeals, revocation and amendment of enactments.

6.

Savers.

7.

Commencement.

8.

Expenses.

PART 2

Local Government Areas and Local Authorities

9.

Establishment day.

10.

Local government areas.

11.

Establishment, titles and administrative areas of local authorities and consequential provisions.

PART 3

Local Authority Membership

12.

Eligibility for local authority membership.

13.

Disqualifications from local authority membership.

14.

Prohibition on multiple membership of local authorities.

15.

Offence to act when disqualified.

16.

Cesser of membership.

17.

Term of office.

18.

Resignation from membership.

19.

Casual vacancies.

20.

Savers (Part 3).

21.

Number of members of local authorities, etc.

22.

Alteration of number of members of local authority.

PART 4

Local Elections

23.

Local electoral areas.

24.

Right to vote at local elections.

25.

Prohibition of plural voting.

26.

Year of elections to all local authorities.

27.

Conduct of elections.

28.

Temporary arrangements with respect to certain polling districts and register of electors.

29.

Consequential appointments to certain other bodies.

30.

Savers (Part 4).

PART 5

Cathaoirleach and Leas-Chathaoirleach

Chapter 1

General

31.

Cathaoirleach and Leas-Chathaoirleach.

32.

Alternative titles to Cathaoirleach and Leas-Chathaoirleach, etc.

33.

Resignation of Cathaoirleach or Leas-Chathaoirleach.

34.

Removal of Cathaoirleach or Leas-Chathaoirleach from office.

Chapter 2

Election by Local Authority

35.

Application of Chapter 2.

36.

Annual election of Cathaoirleach and Leas-Chathaoirleach by local authority.

37.

Method of election of Cathaoirleach by local authority.

38.

Casual vacancy in the office of Cathaoirleach or Leas-Chathaoirleach.

Chapter 3

Direct Election

39.

Application of Chapter 3.

40.

Direct election and tenure of Cathaoirleach of county council and city council.

41.

Casual vacancy in office of Cathaoirleach of county council or city council.

42.

Amendments to certain Acts, relating to direct elections, etc.

43.

Election petitions in relation to direct elections.

PART 6

Meetings and Proceedings of Local Authorities

44.

Application (Part 6).

45.

Attendance of public and media at meetings.

46.

Meetings administrator.

47.

Effective discharge of business.

PART 7

Committees and Joint Committees

48.

Strategic policy committees.

49.

Municipal policy committees.

50.

Area committees.

51.

Committees of local authorities.

52.

Joint committees of local authorities.

53.

Saver for acts of committee or joint committee.

54.

Regulations (Part 7).

PART 8

Local Authority Boundary Alteration

55.

Interpretation (Part 8).

56.

Proposal by local authority for alteration of boundary.

57.

Application for boundary alteration.

58.

Supplementary provision to sections 56 and 57.

59.

Minister may request review.

60.

Report by Local Government Commission.

61.

Power to alter boundaries, etc.

62.

Provisions consequential on boundary alteration.

PART 9

Functions of Local Authorities

Chapter 1

General Functions of Local Authorities

63.

Statement of local authority functions.

64.

Representational functions of local authorities.

65.

Ancillary functions of local authorities.

66.

Promotion of interests of local community.

67.

Amenity, recreation and other functions.

68.

Irish language and local authorities.

69.

Local authorities to have regard to certain matters in performing functions, etc.

70.

Exercise of certain functions.

71.

Objective of unified service to the public.

72.

Transfer of certain functions to local authorities.

73.

Saver (functional area).

Chapter 2

Ceremonial Functions

74.

Civic honours.

75.

Twinning of local authority areas.

76.

Entertainment and associated expenses of local authorities.

Chapter 3

Library and Archival Functions

77.

Library authorities.

78.

Functions of library authorities.

79.

An Chomhairle Leabharlanna.

80.

Records and archives of local authorities.

Chapter 4

Non-Public Roads — Local Improvement Schemes

81.

Assistance towards non-public roads.

Chapter 5

Functions under Local Government (Sanitary Services) Acts, 1878 to 1995, etc.

82.

Definitions (Chapter 5).

83.

Functions under Local Government (Sanitary Services) Acts, 1878 to 1995, etc.

84.

Saver (Chapter 5).

PART 10

Agreements and arrangements concerning functions

85.

Agreements concerning functions.

86.

Joint discharge of functions and provision of services.

87.

Direction to make agreements.

88.

Savers (Part 10).

PART 11

Local Government Commission

89.

Establishment of Local Government Commission.

90.

Functions of Commission.

91.

Members of Commission.

92.

Eligibility and tenure of office of members, etc.

93.

Meetings and procedures of Commission.

94.

Services to Commission.

95.

Submissions to Commission.

PART 12

Financial Procedures and Audit

Chapter 1

Financial Procedures

96.

Local financial year.

97.

The local fund.

98.

Banking arrangements.

99.

Authorisation of payments.

100.

County council expenditure: town services.

101.

Expenses of certain town councils.

102.

Local authority budget.

103.

Local authority budget meeting.

104.

Limitation on additional expenditure.

105.

Submission of financial statements and reports.

106.

Borrowing and lending of money.

107.

Keeping of accounts.

108.

Consideration of annual financial statement.

109.

Community fund.

110.

Community initiative scheme.

111.

Regulations (Chapter 1).

112.

Obligations in case of proposal involving illegal payment, deficiency or loss.

113.

Savers.

Chapter 2

Audit

114.

Interpretation (Chapter 2).

115.

Application (Chapter 2).

116.

Local Government Audit Service.

117.

Code of audit practice.

118.

Audit procedure.

119.

Right of auditor to inspect documents, obtain information, etc.

120.

Audit opinion and report.

121.

Consideration of annual financial statement and auditor's report.

122.

Audit committee.

123.

Extraordinary audit.

124.

Re-assignment of audit.

125.

Audit fees.

126.

Certification of claims, returns, etc.

PART 13

Local Authorities and the Local Community

127.

Consultation with the local community.

128.

Recognised associations.

129.

County or City Development Boards.

PART 14

The Local Government Service

Chapter 1

The Elected Council

130.

Policy role of elected council.

131.

Reserved functions.

132.

Reserved functions: duty of manager.

133.

Corporate policy group.

134.

Corporate plan.

135.

Report on capital programme.

136.

Furnishing of information to elected council.

137.

Plans, specifications to be prepared for elected council.

138.

Prior information to elected council.

139.

Direction that works not proceed.

140.

Requirement that a particular thing be done.

141.

Duty of members appointed to other bodies.

142.

Members' expenses, remuneration, etc.

143.

Allowance for Cathaoirleach and Leas-Chathaoirleach.

Chapter 2

Position of Manager

144.

Position of manager.

145.

Appointment of manager.

146.

Suspension and removal of manager.

147.

Tenure of manager.

148.

Deputy manager.

149.

Executive functions.

Chapter 3

Procedural Matters

150.

Definitions.

151.

Manager acting by signed order.

152.

Attendance of manager at local authority meetings.

153.

Legal proceedings.

154.

Delegation of functions.

Chapter 4

Local Authority Personnel

155.

Definitions (Chapter 4).

156.

Appropriate Minister.

157.

Application (Chapter 4).

158.

Provisions relating to the employment of persons by local authorities.

159.

Staffing and organisational arrangements.

160.

Qualifications for employment.

161.

Restrictions on local authority employment and membership of a local authority.

162.

Modification of restriction on being employed under certain related bodies.

163.

Amendment of Local Authorities (Officers and Employees) Act, 1926.

164.

Amendment of Unfair Dismissals Act, 1977.

165.

Savers (Chapter 4).

PART 15

Ethical Framework for the Local Government Service

166.

Interpretation (Part 15).

167.

Application (Part 15).

168.

Standards of integrity.

169.

Codes of conduct for Local Government Service.

170.

Prohibition of favours, rewards, etc.

171.

Annual declaration.

172.

Public register of interests.

173.

Ethics registrar.

174.

Duty of ethics registrar, etc.

175.

Declarable interests.

176.

Beneficial interests.

177.

Disclosure by member of local authority of pecuniary or other beneficial interests.

178.

Disclosure by manager for local authority of pecuniary or other beneficial interests.

179.

Disclosure by employee, etc. of local authority of pecuniary or other beneficial interests.

180.

Application of Ethics in Public Office Act, 1995, etc.

181.

Offences (Part 15).

182.

Consequences of failure to comply with sections 171, 177, 178 and 179.

PART 16

Land

183.

Land disposals, notification of members.

184.

Exercise of certain land functions.

PART 17

Establishment of New Town Councils, etc.

185.

Establishment of town council.

186.

First election to town council.

187.

Dissolution of town council.

PART 18

Changing of Names of Areas and Display of Names of Streets, etc.

188.

Interpretation (Part 18).

189.

Changing of name of town.

190.

Changing of name of townland or non-municipal town situated wholly within one county or city.

191.

Changing of name of townland or non-municipal town situated in more than one county, etc.

192.

Changing of name of street situated in one local authority area.

193.

Changing of name of street situated in more than one local authority area.

194.

Changing of name of locality situated in one local authority area.

195.

Changing of name of locality situated in more than one local authority area.

196.

General provisions relating to change of names.

197.

Display of name of street, etc.

PART 19

Bye-Laws

198.

Interpretation (Part 19).

199.

Power to make bye-law.

200.

Procedure for making bye-law.

201.

Certain bye-laws to be submitted to appropriate Minister.

202.

Publication of bye-law.

203.

Proof of bye-law.

204.

Obstruction, etc. of authorised person.

205.

Bye-law offences and penalties.

206.

Fixed payment notices.

207.

Prosecution of offences (Part 19).

208.

Payments of fines and fixed payments.

209.

Continuation in force of existing bye-laws, etc.

210.

Power to apply (Part 19).

211.

Amendment of Control of Dogs Act, 1986.

PART 20

Public Local Inquiries

212.

Power to hold public local inquiries.

213.

Power of inspector conducting a public local inquiry.

214.

Power to direct payment of certain costs in relation to a public local inquiry, etc.

PART 21

Consequential Provisions on Failure to Perform Functions

215.

Definitions (Part 21).

216.

Failure to perform functions, etc.

217.

Holding of new election after removal of members.

218.

Appointment of commissioners, etc.

219.

Exercise of functions by commissioners.

220.

Linked bodies.

PART 22

Miscellaneous

221.

Annual report.

222.

Returns, information to Minister.

223.

Electoral divisions.

224.

Report by authorised person.

225.

Local authority associations.

226.

Local Authority Members' Association.

227.

Reclaimed land and structures to form part of local authority area.

228.

Acceptance of gifts by a local authority.

229.

Power of local authorities to enter into contracts, etc.

230.

Joint burial boards.

231.

Joint drainage committees.

232.

Regulations to remove difficulties.

233.

Reduction of grants etc. in certain circumstances.

234.

Offence by body corporate.

235.

Commencement of summary proceedings.

236.

Discharge of certain functions by Minister.

237.

Regional authorities, functions.

PART 23

Transfer of Temple Bar Properties Limited to Dublin City Council

238.

Definition (Part 23).

239.

Transfer of Temple Bar Properties Limited to Dublin City Council.

240.

Shareholder in Temple Bar Properties Limited.

241.

Transitional (Part 23).

242.

Repeals (Part 23).

PART 24

Miscellaneous Amendments

243.

Amendment of Electoral Act, 1992.

244.

Amendment of Housing (Traveller Accommodation) Act, 1998.

245.

Amendment of Roads Act, 1993.

246.

Amendment of Abattoirs Act, 1988.

247.

Additional amendments to Planning and Development Act, 2000.

SCHEDULE 1

Acts included in collective citation — Local Government Acts, 1925 to 2001

SCHEDULE 2

Construction of Certain Terms in Other Enactments

SCHEDULE 3

Enactments Repealed and Revoked

SCHEDULE 4

Minor and consequential Amendments to Acts

SCHEDULE 5

Local Government Areas (Counties and Cities)

SCHEDULE 6

Local Government Areas (Towns)

SCHEDULE 7

Number of Members of Local Authorities

SCHEDULE 8

Alternative Titles to Cathaoirleach and Leas-Chathaoirleach, etc.

SCHEDULE 9

Minor and Consequential Amendments relating to Direct Elections, etc.

SCHEDULE 10

Meetings and Proceedings of Local Authorities

1.

Local authority meetings.

2.

Place, date and time of meetings.

3.

Day of annual meeting.

4.

Business and public notice of annual meeting.

5.

Local authority budget meeting.

6.

Special meetings.

7.

Notification of meeting and agenda.

8.

Public notice of meetings.

9.

Business of meeting.

10.

Chairing of meetings.

11.

Quorum.

12.

Doing of acts and determination of questions.

13.

Disorderly conduct.

14.

Minutes.

15.

Record of attendance at meetings and address for correspondence.

16.

Standing orders.

17.

Committees.

18.

Right to form groups for certain appointments.

19.

Equity in appointments, etc.

SCHEDULE 11

Local Authority Boundary Alteration

SCHEDULE 12

Acts of the Oireachtas: Functions of Local Authorities

SCHEDULE 13

Amenities, Recreation and Other Functions

SCHEDULE 14

Certain Reserved Functions

SCHEDULE 15

Functions to be done by Manager's Order


Acts Referred to

Abattoirs Act, 1988

1988, No. 8

Air Pollution Act, 1987

1987, No. 6

Air-raid Precautions Acts, 1939 and 1946

Arterial Drainage Acts, 1945 and 1995

Arts Acts, 1951 and 1973

Building Control Act, 1990

1990, No. 3

Canals Act, 1986

1986, No. 3

Casual Trading Act, 1995

1995, No. 19

City and County Management (Amendment) Act, 1955

1955, No. 12

Civil Service Regulation Act, 1956

1956, No. 46

Coast Protection Act, 1963

1963, No. 12

Commissioners Clauses Act, 1847

10 & 11 Vict. c. 16

Companies Act, 1963

1963, No. 33

Companies Acts, 1963 to 1999

Control of Dogs Act, 1986

1986, No. 32

Control of Dogs Acts, 1986 and 1992

Control of Dogs (Amendment) Act, 1992

1992, No. 13

Control of Horses Act, 1996

1996, No. 37

Cork City Management Act, 1929

1929, No. 1

Cork City Management (Amendment) Act, 1941

1941, No. 5

Cork City Management (Amendment) Act, 1965

1965, No. 8

Coroners Act, 1962

1962, No. 9

Counties and Boroughs (Ireland) Act, 1840

3 & 4 Vict. c. 109

County Dublin Grand Jury Act, 1844

7 & 8 Vict. c. 106

County Management Act, 1940

1940, No. 12

County Management (Amendment) Act, 1942

1942, No. 13

County Management (Amendment) Act, 1972

1972, No. 32

County Treasurers (Ireland) Act, 1867

30 & 31 Vict. c. 46

Courthouses (Provision and Maintenance) Act, 1935

1935, No. 18

Courts (Establishment and Constitution) Act, 1961

1961, No. 38

Dangerous Substances Acts, 1972 and 1979

Derelict Sites Act, 1990

1990, No. 14

Development and Road Improvement Funds Act, 1909

9 Edw. 7. c. 47

Dublin Docklands Development Authority Act, 1997

1997, No. 7

Dublin Transport Authority (Dissolution) Act, 1987

1987, No. 34

Ethics in Public Office Act, 1995

1995, No. 22

Electoral Act, 1963

1963, No. 19

Electoral Act, 1992

1992, No. 23

Electoral Act, 1997

1997, No. 25

Electoral Act, 1992 to 1999

Electoral (Amendment) Act, 1998

1998, No. 4

Environmental Protection Agency Act, 1992

1992, No. 7

European Parliament Elections Act, 1997

1997, No. 2

Finance (Excise Duties) (Vehicles) Act, 1952

1952, No. 24

Fire Services Act, 1981

1981, No. 30

Food Safety Authority of Ireland Act, 1998

1998, No. 29

Foreshore Acts, 1933 to 1998

Gaming and Lotteries Act, 1956

1956, No. 2

Grand Jury (Ireland) Act, 1836

6 & 7 Will. 4 c. 116

Grand Jury (Ireland) Act, 1853

16 & 17 Vict. c. 136

Harbours Act, 1946

1946, No. 9

Harbours Act, 1996

1996, No. 11

Harbours Acts, 1946 to 1976

Health Act, 1970

1970, No. 1

Health Acts, 1947 to 2001

Health (Eastern Regional Health Authority) Act, 1999

1999, No. 13

Health (Fluoridation of Water Supplies) Act, 1960

1960, No. 46

Holidays (Employees) Act, 1973

1973, No. 25

Housing Act, 1966

1966, No. 21

Housing Act, 1988

1988, No. 28

Housing Acts, 1966 to 1998

Housing (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act, 1992

1992, No. 18

Housing (Private Rented Dwellings) Acts, 1982 and 1983

Housing (Traveller Accommodation) Act, 1998

1998, No. 33

Industrial Development Act, 1986

1986, No. 9

Industrial Development Act, 1995

1995, No. 28

Interpretation Act, 1937

1937, No. 38

Limerick City Management Act, 1934

1934, No. 35

Limerick City Management Act, 1950

1950, No. 24

Litter Pollution Act, 1997

1997, No. 12

Local Authorities (Acceptance of Gifts) Act, 1945

1945, No. 30

Local Authorities (Cost of Living) Act, 1940

1940, No. 22

Local Authorities (Cost of Living) (Amendment) Act, 1945

1945, No. 13

Local Authorities (Electrical Employees) Act, 1937

1937, No. 13

Local Authorities (Higher Education Grants) Acts, 1968 to 1992

Local Authorities (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act, 1936

1936, No. 55

Local Authorities (Mutual Assurance) Acts, 1926 to 1935

Local Authorities (Officers and Employees) Act, 1926

1926, No. 39

Local Authorities (Officers and Employees) Acts, 1926 to 1983

Local Authorities (Traffic Wardens) Acts, 1975 and 1987

Local Authorities (Works) Act, 1949

1949, No. 17

Local Elections Acts, 1974 to 1999

Local Elections (Disclosure of Donations and Expenditure) Act, 1999

1999, No. 7

Local Elections (Petitions and Disqualifications) Act, 1974

1974, No. 8

Local Government Act, 1925

1925, No. 5

Local Government Act, 1927

1927, No. 3

Local Government Act, 1941

1941, No. 23

Local Government Act, 1946

1946, No. 24

Local Government Act, 1955

1955, No. 9

Local Government Act, 1958

1958, No. 9

Local Government Act, 1959

1959, No. 10

Local Government (No. 2) Act, 1960

1960, No. 40

Local Government Act, 1991

1991, No. 11

Local Government Act, 1994

1994, No. 8

Local Government Act, 1998

1998, No. 16

Local Government Act, 2000

2000, No. 25

Local Government (Amendment) (No. 2) Act, 1934

1934, No. 44

Local Government Board (Ireland) Act, 1872

35 & 36 Vict. c. 69

Local Government (Buncrana) Act, 1968

1968, No. 2

Local Government (Collection of Rates) Act, 1924

1924, No. 11

Local Government (Dublin) Act, 1930

1930, No. 27

Local Government (Dublin) Act, 1945

1945, No. 8

Local Government (Dublin) Act, 1993

1993, No. 31

Local Government (Financial Provisions) Act, 1978

1978, No. 35

Local Government (Financial Provisions) Act, 1983

1983, No. 10

Local Government (Financial Provisions) (No. 2) Act, 1983

1983, No. 21

Local Government (Financial Provisions) Act, 1997

1997, No. 29

Local Government (Financial Provisions) Act, 2000

2000, No. 6

Local Government (Galway) Act, 1937

1937, No. 3 (Private)

Local Government (Ireland) Act, 1871

34 & 35 Vict. c. 109

Local Government (Ireland) Act, 1898

61 & 62 Vict. c. 37

Local Government (Ireland) Act, 1900

63 & 64 Vict. c. 63

Local Government (Ireland) Act, 1902

2 Edw. 7. c. 38

Local Government (Multi-Storey Buildings) Act, 1988

1988, No. 29

Local Government (Nomination of Presidential Candidates) Act, 1937

1937, No. 36

Local Government (Planning and Development) Acts, 1963 to 1999

Local Government (Rateability of Rents) (Abolition) Act, 1971

1971, No. 15

Local Government (Rates) Act, 1970

1970, No. 2

Local Government (Reorganisation) Act, 1985

1985, No. 7

Local Government (Roads and Drainage) Act, 1968

1968, No. 6

Local Government (Sanitary Services) Act, 1948

1948, No. 3

Local Government (Sanitary Services) Act, 1964

1964, No. 29

Local Government (Sanitary Services) Acts, 1878 to 1995

Local Government (Sanitary Services) (Joint Burial Boards) Act, 1952

1952, No. 22

Local Government (Superannuation) Act, 1980

1980, No. 8

Local Government (Temporary Provisions) (Amendment) Act, 1924

1924, No. 13

Local Government (Water Pollution) Acts, 1977 and 1990

Local Government Services (Corporate Bodies) Act, 1971

1971, No. 6

Local Officers and Servants (Dublin) Act, 1941

1941, No. 15

Malicious Injuries Acts, 1981 and 1986

Minister for Arts, Heritage, Gaeltacht and the Islands (Powers and Functions) Act, 1998

1998, No. 7

Municipal Corporations Act, 1882

45 & 46 Vict. c. 50

Municipal Corporations (Ireland) Act, 1840

3 & 4 Vict. c. 108

Municipal Corporations (Ireland) Act, 1843

6 & 7 Vict. c. 93

Municipal Corporations Mortgages etc. Act, 1860

23 & 24 Vict. c. 16

Municipal Elections (Corrupt and Illegal Practices) Act, 1884

47 & 48 Vict. c. 70

National Archives Act, 1986

1986, No. 11

National Monuments Acts, 1930 to 1994

Organisation of Working Time Act, 1997

1997, No. 20

Petty Sessions (Ireland) Act, 1851

14 & 15 Vict. c. 93

Planning and Development Act, 2000

2000, No. 30

Pounds (Provision and Maintenance) Act, 1935

1935, No. 17

Presidential Elections Act, 1993

1993, No. 28

Prevention of Corruptions Acts, 1889 to 1995

Public Health Acts Amendment Act, 1890

53 & 54 Vict. c. 59

Public Health Acts Amendment Act, 1907

7 Edw. 7. c. 53

Public Health (Ireland) Act, 1878

41 & 42 Vict. c. 52

Public Health (Ireland) Act, 1896

59 & 60 Vict. c. 54

Public Libraries Act, 1947

1947, No. 40

Regional Technical Colleges (Amendment) Act, 1999

1999, No. 20

Road Fund (Grants) (Temporary Provisions) Act, 1962

1962, No. 3

Roads Act, 1993

1993, No. 14

Roads Acts, 1993 and 1998

Road Traffic Acts, 1961 to 1995

Safety, Health and Welfare at Work Act, 1989

1989, No. 7

School Attendance Act, 1926

1926, No. 17

School Attendance Acts, 1926 to 1967

Seanad Electoral (Panel Members) Acts, 1947 and 1954

Social Welfare (Consolidation) Act, 1981

1981, No. 1

Survey (Ireland) Acts, 1825 to 1870

Temple Bar Area Renewal and Development Act, 1991

1991, No. 19

Town Renewal Act, 2000

2000, No. 18

Towns Improvement Clauses Act, 1847

10 & 11 Vict. c. 34

Towns Improvement (Ireland) Act, 1854

17 & 18 Vict. c. 103

Údarás na Gaeltachta Acts, 1979 to 1999

Unemployment (Relief Works) Act, 1940

1940, No. 34

Unfair Dismissals Act, 1977

1977, No. 10

Universities Act, 1997

1997, No. 24

Urban Renewal Act, 1986

1986, No. 19

Urban Renewal Act, 1998

1998, No. 27

Vocational Education Act, 1930

1930, No. 29

Vocational Education Acts, 1930 to 1999

Waste Management Act, 1996

1996, No. 10

Water Supplies Act, 1942

1942, No. 1

Waterford City Management Act, 1939

1939, No. 25

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Number 37 of 2001


LOCAL GOVERNMENT ACT, 2001


AN ACT TO MAKE FURTHER AND BETTER PROVISION IN RELATION TO LOCAL GOVERNMENT AND, IN PARTICULAR, TO CONSOLIDATE WITH AMENDMENTS CERTAIN ENACTMENTS RELATING GENERALLY TO LOCAL AUTHORITIES. [21st July, 2001]

BE IT ENACTED BY THE OIREACHTAS AS FOLLOWS:

PART 1

Preliminary and General

Short title and collective citations.

1.—(1) This Act may be cited as the Local Government Act, 2001.

(2) This Act (other than sections 163, 164 and 211 and Parts 23 and 24) and the Acts referred to in Schedule 1 may be cited together as the Local Government Acts, 1925 to 2001, and shall be read together as one.

(3) Sections 81 and 245 and the Roads Acts, 1993 and 1998, may be cited together as the Roads Acts, 1993 to 2001, and shall be read together as one.

(4) Chapter 5 of Part 9 and the Local Government (Sanitary Services) Acts, 1878 to 1995, may be cited together as the Local Government (Sanitary Services) Acts, 1878 to 2001, and shall be read together as one.

(5) Parts 3, 4 and Chapter 3 of Part 5, section 243 and the Local Elections Acts, 1974 to 1999, may be cited together as the Local Elections Acts, 1974 to 2001, and shall be read together as one.

(6) Part 23 and the Temple Bar Area Renewal and Development Act, 1991 , may be cited together as the Temple Bar Area Renewal and Development Acts, 1991 and 2001, and shall be read together as one.

(7) Sections 2, 5(3) and Schedule 4 (in so far as they relate to the Act of 2000), section 247 and the Act of 2000 may be cited together as the Planning and Development Acts, 2000 and 2001.

Interpretation generally.

2.—(1) In this Act, except where the context otherwise requires—

“Act of 2000” means the Planning and Development Act, 2000 ;

“administrative area” means an area which continues to stand established under section 10 for the purposes of local government and which is—

(a) a county in the case of a county council,

(b) a city in the case of a city council,

(c) a town in the case of a town council;

“annual meeting” means an annual meeting of a local authority as provided for in paragraph 3 of Schedule 10;

“annual report”, in the context of a local authority, means a report under section 221 ;

“casual vacancy” shall be read in accordance with section 19 (1);

“Cathaoirleach” has the meaning given to it by section 31 ;

“city council” means a local authority to which section 11 (3)(b) relates;

“city development board” has the meaning given by section 129 ;

“committee” means a committee of a local authority established under Part 7;

“corporate plan” has the meaning given to it by section 134 ;

“corporate policy group” means a committee established under section 133 (1);

“county council” means a local authority to which section 11 (3)(a) relates;

“county development board” has the meaning given by section 129 ;

“direct election” has the meaning given to it by section 40 ;

“direction” means a direction in writing given by—

(a) the Minister under this Act, or

(b) an appropriate Minister under Chapter 4 of Part 14;

“Director of Audit” means a person appointed under section 116 ;

“elected council” means the members of the local authority concerned and shall be read in accordance with section 11 (5);

“election year” means a year in which a local election is held;

“enactment” includes a statutory instrument within the meaning given by section 3 of the Interpretation Act, 1937 ;

“establishment day” means the day appointed by the Minister by order under section 9 to be the establishment day for the purposes of this Act;

“excluded day” means a day which is a Saturday, Sunday or public holiday (within the meaning given by the Organisation of Working Time Act, 1997 ) or any other day on which the principal offices of the local authority concerned are closed;

“executive function” shall be read in accordance with section 149 ;

“functions” includes powers and duties and a reference to the performance of functions includes, with respect to powers and duties, a reference to the exercise of the powers and the carrying out of the duties;

“joint body” means—

(a) a joint library committee,

(b) a joint drainage board,

(c) a joint drainage committee,

(d) a joint burial board,

(e) a joint burial committee,

(f) a joint committee to which section 52 (5) applies, or

(g) such other body as may be prescribed by regulations made by the Minister under section 144 (7);

“joint committee” means a joint committee established under Part 7;

“land” has the meaning given to it by the Act of 2000;

“Leas-Chathaoirleach” has the meaning given to it by section 31 ;

“local authority” means—

(a) a county council,

(b) a city council,

(c) a town council;

“local authority budget” means a budget adopted under section 103 (7) and “budget”, in relation to a local authority, shall be read accordingly;

“local authority budget meeting” has the meaning given to it by section 103 ;

“local community” means persons ordinarily resident in the administrative area of the local authority concerned and, where relevant as regards a function of the authority, includes persons from outside that area who regularly use facilities of a social, economic, recreational, cultural or other nature provided by the authority;

“local consultative committee” has the meaning given to it by section 21 of the Housing (Traveller Accommodation) Act, 1998 ;

“local election” means an election under Part 4;

“local electoral area” means an area referred to in section 23 by reference to which a local election is held;

“Local Government Commission” has the meaning given to it by Part 11;

“local government elector” means a person entitled to vote at a local election;

“manager” means a manager for the purposes of section 144 ;

“meetings administrator” shall be read in accordance with section 46 ;

“member”, in relation to a local authority, includes a Cathaoirleach and Leas-Chathaoirleach;

“Minister” means the Minister for the Environment and Local Government;

“ordinary day of retirement” has the meaning given to it by section 17 ;

“public authority” means—

(a) a Minister of the Government,

(b) the Commissioners of Public Works in Ireland,

(c) a harbour authority within the meaning of the Harbours Act, 1946 ,

(d) (i) a health board,

(ii) the Eastern Regional Health Authority, or

(iii) an Area Health Board established under the Health (Eastern Regional Health Authority) Act, 1999 ;

(e) a board or other body (but not including a company under the Companies Acts, 1963 to 1999) established by or under statute,

(f) a company under the Companies Acts, 1963 to 1999, in which all the shares are held—

(i) by or on behalf of a Minister of the Government,

(ii) by directors appointed by a Minister of the Government, or

(iii) by a board, company or other body referred to in paragraph (e) or subparagraph (i) or (ii),

(g) such other body as may be prescribed by regulations made by the Minister for the purposes of any provision of this Act;

“public local inquiry” means an inquiry held under Part 20 and “inquiry” shall be read accordingly;

“public notice”, in the context of a local authority, means a notice published in at least one newspaper circulating in the local authority's administrative area;

“rating authority” means—

(a) a county council,

(b) a city council, or

(c) a town council referred to in Part 1 of Schedule 6;

“register of electors” has the meaning given to it by section 24 (1);

“reserved function” shall be read in accordance with section 131 ;

“standing orders”, in the context of a local authority, has the meaning given by paragraph 16(1) of Schedule 10;

“strategic policy committee” has the meaning given by section 48 ;

“structure” means any building, erection, structure (including a movable structure), excavation, or other thing constructed, erected, made or placed on, in or under any land, or any part of a structure so defined and, where the context so admits, includes the land on, in or under which the structure is situated;

“town council” shall be construed in accordance with section 11 (4)(b).

(2) In this Act a reference to the total number of members of a local authority shall be read as the number of members of the local authority concerned as determined by section 21 .

(3) In this Act a reference to local government areas or to the administrative area of a local authority does not include an area added for local electoral purposes only under section 17 of the Local Government Act, 1994 .

(4) In this Act a reference to a person being disqualified from election or co-option to a local authority shall be read as including a disqualification from nomination for election or co-option to a local authority.

(5) In this Act, except where the context otherwise requires, a reference to social inclusion or its promotion shall be read as including a reference to any policy, objective, measure or activity designed to counteract poverty or other social deprivation or to facilitate greater participation by marginalised groups in the social, economic and cultural life of the local community.

(6) In this Act, except where the context otherwise requires—

(a) a reference to a section, Chapter, Part or Schedule is a reference to a section, Chapter or Part of, or Schedule to, this Act, as the case may be, unless it is indicated that reference to some other enactment is intended,

(b) a reference to a subsection, paragraph, subparagraph, clause or subclause is to the subsection, paragraph, subparagraph, clause or subclause of the provision (including a Schedule) in which the reference occurs, unless it is indicated that reference to some other provision is intended.

(7) In this Act, a reference to any enactment shall be read as a reference to that enactment as amended, adapted or extended by or under any subsequent enactment, including this Act.

Construction of enactments.

3.—(1) Every enactment (including any provision contained in a local, personal or private Act) and every order, regulation, rule, bye-law or other instrument or agreement in force immediately before the commencement of a provision of this Act shall, on and after the day of such commencement but subject to any regulations made under this section, be read and have effect with such modifications as may be necessary to give effect to this Act or an order or regulations under it and to have effect in conformity with it.

(2) A reference in any enactment other than this Act to an expression mentioned in the first column of Schedule 2 or to a similar or analogous expression shall, except where the context otherwise requires and subject to any regulations made under this section, be read as a reference to the appropriate expression of this Act as indicated in the second column of that Schedule opposite the expression in the first column.

(3) (a) The Minister, or any other Minister of the Government after consultation with the Minister, may, in respect of any enactment, instrument or agreement which relates to matters for which the relevant Minister has general responsibility, make regulations for the purposes of enabling subsection (1) to have full effect.

(b) Without prejudice to the generality of paragraph (a), regulations under this subsection may, in respect of a provision of any other enactment, instrument or agreement which is related to or otherwise affected by any provision of this Act, provide for its adaptation, modification or cesser of operation in so far as this appears necessary or expedient to the Minister concerned for the purposes of securing that any such other provision shall have effect in conformity with this Act or with an order or regulations made under it.

(4) Regulations may not be made under this section after the expiration of 3 years from the establishment day.

Regulations, orders and directions.

4.—(1) The Minister may make regulations prescribing any matter or thing which is referred to in this Act as prescribed or to be prescribed or for the purposes of enabling any provision to have full effect.

(2) Without prejudice to any other provision of this Act, a regulation or order under this Act may provide for such incidental, consequential, supplementary or transitional provisions (including provisions for the purpose of securing the continuity of any provision of this Act with any provision of any other Act or instrument repealed, revoked, amended or otherwise affected by this Act or by any regulations or order made under it) as may appear to the Minister making the regulation or order to be appropriate for the purposes of this Act or any regulations or order made under it.

(3) A regulation or an order under this Act may—

(a) apply to local authorities generally, to any class or classes of local authorities specified in the regulations or the order or to a particular local authority so specified,

(b) contain different provisions in relation to different local authorities or to different parts of the administrative area of a local authority,

(c) provide for the giving of directions by the Minister (including directions amending or revoking any such directions).

(4) (a) Except where paragraph (c) applies, every order and regulation made by the Minister or any other Minister of the Government under this Act shall be laid before each House of the Oireachtas as soon as may be after it is made.

(b) If after an order or regulation is laid under paragraph (a) a resolution annulling the order or regulation is passed by either House of the Oireachtas within the next 21 days on which the House has sat after the order or regulation is laid before it, the order or regulation shall be annulled accordingly but without prejudice to the validity of anything previously done under it.

(c) Paragraph (a) does not apply to an order or regulation which is required by this Act to be approved in draft by resolution of both Houses of the Oireachtas or to an order under section 199 (8).

(5) Other than an order under section 7 , the Minister may by order, amend or revoke any order under this Act including an order made under this subsection.

(6) (a) The Minister may by direction amend or revoke a direction given by him or her under this Act (including a direction under this subsection).

(b) A person to whom a direction is given under this Act shall comply with that direction.

(7) This section does not apply to a provisional order under section 72 (1).

Repeals, revocation and amendment of enactments.

5.—(1) Each Act specified in the first and second columns of Part 1 of Schedule 3 is repealed to the extent specified in the third column of that Part opposite the references in the first and second columns.

(2) Each order specified in the first and second columns of Part 2 of Schedule 3 is revoked to the extent specified in the third column of that Part opposite the references in the first and second columns.

(3) Each Act specified in the first and second columns of Schedule 4 is amended in the manner stated in the third column of that Schedule opposite the references in the first and second columns.

Savers.

6.—The repeal or revocation by this Act of a provision of any enactment which is applied by a provision of any other enactment not so repealed or revoked, shall not affect such application and accordingly the first-mentioned provision continues to apply and have effect for the purposes of such application.

Commencement.

7.—This Act (except Part 2, section 9 of which provides for an establishment day order in respect of that Part, and except section 161 and Chapter 3 of Part 5, the coming into operation of which is provided for in that section and Chapter, respectively) shall come into operation on such day or days as, by order or orders made by the Minister, may be fixed therefor either generally or with reference to any particular purpose or provision, and different days may be so fixed for different purposes and different provisions and for the repeal, revocation and amendment effected by section 5 of different enactments or of different provisions of those enactments.

Expenses.

8.—The expenses incurred by the Minister in the administration of this Act shall, to such extent as may be sanctioned by the Minister for Finance, be paid out of moneys provided by the Oireachtas.

PART 2

Local Government Areas and Local Authorities

Establishment day.

9.—The Minister shall by order appoint a day to be the establishment day for the purposes of this Act.

Local government areas.

10.—(1) On and from the establishment day and for the purposes of local government, the State has local government areas in accordance with this section.

(2) The State continues to stand divided into local government areas to be known as counties and cities which are the areas set out in Parts 1 and 2, respectively, of Schedule 5.

(3) Within the county in which they are situated and of which they form part, there continue to be such other local government areas as are set out in Schedule 6 which—

(a) in the case of the areas set out in Chapter 1 of Part 1 of that Schedule, shall be known as boroughs, and

(b) in the case of the areas set out in Chapter 2 of Part 1 and Part 2 of that Schedule, shall be known as towns,

and in this Act a reference to a town shall include a reference to a borough.

(4) (a) The boundaries of a county referred to in subsection (2) are the boundaries of the corresponding county as existing immediately before the establishment day and, for that purpose, the corresponding counties to Tipperary North Riding and Tipperary South Riding shall be North Tipperary and South Tipperary, respectively.

(b) The boundaries of a city referred to in subsection (2) are the boundaries of the corresponding county borough as existing immediately before the establishment day.

(c) The boundaries of a town referred to in subsection (3) are the boundaries of the corresponding borough, urban district or town, as the case may be, as existing immediately before the establishment day.

(5) For the purposes of this section, all maps showing such boundaries prepared by the Chief Boundary Surveyor under the Survey (Ireland) Acts, 1825 to 1870, or by the Commissioner of Valuation or otherwise in accordance with law continue to have all such force and effect as they had immediately before the establishment day.

(6) This section is without prejudice to Parts 8 and 17 and section 227 .

(7) This section is without prejudice to the continued use of the description city in relation to Kilkenny, to the extent that that description was used before the establishment day and is not otherwise inconsistent with this Act.

Establishment, titles and administrative areas of local authorities and consequential provisions.

11.—(1) On and from the establishment day and for the purposes of local government, the areas referred to in section 10 shall each have a local authority as provided for in this section.

(2) For each county or city set out in Schedule 5 there continues to stand established under this section a body for the purposes of local government and each such body is a local authority and each such county or city is its administrative area.

(3) The local authorities referred to in subsection (2) are the primary units of local government and shall be known as—

(a) in the case of a county set out in Part 1 of Schedule 5, the name of such county followed by the words “County Council”, and

(b) in the case of a city set out in Part 2 of Schedule 5, the name of such city followed by the words “City Council”.

(4) (a) For each of the towns set out in Schedule 6 there continues to stand established under this section a body for the purposes of local government and each such body is a local authority and each such town is its administrative area.

(b) The local authority for each of the towns set out in Schedule 6 shall be known by the name of the town followed by the words—

(i) in the case of a town set out in Chapter 1 of Part 1 of that Schedule, “Borough Council”, and

(ii) in any other case, “Town Council”,

and references in this Act to “town council” shall be construed accordingly.

(5) (a) In respect of a local authority to which subsection (3) or (4) relates, each member (being directly elected or co-opted in accordance with this Act) shall be known as a councillor and collectively shall comprise the elected council of the local authority.

(b) Each local authority shall have a Cathaoirleach and Leas-Chathaoirleach elected in accordance with Part 5.

(6) For the purposes of functions conferred on it by or under this or any other enactment—

(a) a county council has jurisdiction throughout its administrative area except for such functions as are by law vested in any town council, the administrative area of which is situated in the county concerned, but without prejudice to section 70 ,

(b) a city council has jurisdiction throughout its administrative area,

(c) subject to paragraph (a), a town council has jurisdiction throughout its administrative area.

(7) A local authority to which subsection (3) or (4) relates shall—

(a) continue to be a body corporate with perpetual succession and power to sue and be sued in its corporate name and to acquire, hold, manage, maintain and dispose of land or any interest in land,

(b) have a seal which shall be judicially noticed and every document claiming to be an instrument made by it and to be sealed with its seal (claiming to be authenticated in accordance with subsection (8)) shall be received in evidence and be deemed to be that instrument without further proof unless the contrary is shown.

(8) The seal referred to in subsection (7)(b) shall be authenticated by the signature of the Cathaoirleach or of an employee of the authority nominated in writing for that purpose by the manager following consultation with the Cathaoirleach.

(9) Any seal used immediately before the establishment day by a local authority to which this section relates continues to have all such force and effect as it had immediately before that day.

(10) Notwithstanding subsection (9), at any time after the establishment day a local authority to which this section relates may provide itself with a new seal which shall be judicially noticed and subsection (7) regarding the evidential value of the seal applies also to such seal.

(11) Notwithstanding the repeal of enactments relating to its establishment and constitution, a county council, county borough corporation, borough corporation (other than a county borough corporation), urban district council or the commissioners of a town in being immediately before the establishment day, continue in being but subject to the provisions of this Act applying and having effect.

(12) Subsection (11) applies and has effect in relation to the continuation in being of the bodies mentioned in that subsection notwithstanding any change brought about by this Act in the corporate name of any such body or in its corporate status or constitution and the functions vested by any enactment in such body shall, subject to the provisions of this Act, continue to stand so vested.

(13) A reference in any other enactment or other document to a local authority (being a local authority which continues to stand established) by its name applying before it was changed under this Act shall be read as a reference to that body as renamed.

(14) All acts done and decisions made before the establishment day by a local authority (which continues to stand established under this section), whether by resolution, manager's order or otherwise, shall subject to this Act continue to have all such force and effect as they had immediately before that day.

(15) (a) The land and other property and all rights related thereto which was, before the establishment day, vested in or held by a local authority which continues to stand established under this section continues, subject to the provisions of this Act, to be so vested or held by that authority for the same estate, right, title or interest and may be disposed of in accordance with Part 16.

(b) Paragraph (a) is without prejudice to the generality of subsection (14).

(16) Subject to this Act, royal charters and letters patent relating to local authorities shall continue to apply for ceremonial and related purposes in accordance with local civic tradition but shall otherwise cease to have effect.

(17) (a) This section is without prejudice to section 73 , Part 17 or 21.

(b) Subsection (6) is without prejudice to Part 10.

PART 3

Local Authority Membership

Eligibility for local authority membership.

12.—Subject to section 14 and to the disqualifications set out in section 13 and to the provisions of section 19 relating to co-option, a person is eligible for election or co-option to, and membership of, a local authority, if he or she is a citizen of Ireland or is ordinarily resident in the State and has or will attain the age of 18 years—

(a) on or before polling day at a local election, or

(b) if there is no poll, the latest day for receiving nominations at the election, or on or before the day of co-option to a local authority.

Disqualifications from local authority membership.

13.—(1) Subject to subsection (2), a person is disqualified from being elected or co-opted to, or from being a member of a local authority if he or she—

(a) is a member of the Commission of the European Community, or

(b) is a representative in the European Parliament, or

(c) is a Judge, Advocate General or Registrar of the Court of Justice of the European Community, or

(d) is a member of the Court of Auditors of the European Community, or

(e) is a Minister of the Government or a Minister of State or the chairman of Dáil Éireann (An Ceann Comhairle), or the chairman of Seanad Éireann, or

(f) is appointed under the Constitution as a Judge or as the Comptroller and Auditor General, or

(g) is a member of the Garda Síochána or a wholetime member of the Defence Forces as defined in section 11(4)(b) of the Electoral Act, 1992 , or

(h) is a civil servant who is not by terms of employment expressly permitted to be a member of a local authority, or

(i) is a person employed by a local authority and is not the holder of a class, description or grade of employment designated by order under section 161 (1)(b) or deemed to have been made under that section, or

(j) is undergoing a sentence of imprisonment for any term exceeding 6 months imposed by a court of competent jurisdiction in the State, or

(k) fails to pay any sum or any portion of any sum charged or surcharged, by an auditor of the accounts of any local authority, upon or against that person, or

(l) fails to comply with a final judgement, order or decree of a court of competent jurisdiction, for payment of money due to any local authority, or

(m) is convicted of, or has had a conviction confirmed on appeal for, an offence relating to any of the following:

(i) fraudulent or dishonest dealings affecting a local authority;

(ii) corrupt practice;

(iii) acting when disqualified.

(2) (a) A disqualification arising under subsection (1)(k) commences—

(i) where no appeal is taken, on the expiration of the time limit for an appeal, or

(ii) where an appeal is taken to the Minister or the High Court, on the expiration of one month from the date of an order confirming the charge or surcharge,

and the disqualification shall be for 5 years from the date of its commencement.

(b) A disqualification arising under subsection (1)(l) comes into effect on the seventh day after the last day for compliance with the relevant final judgement, order or decree and the disqualification shall be for 5 years from such last day.

(c) A disqualification arising under subsection (1)(m) commences—

(i) where no appeal is taken against the conviction, when the time limit for taking an appeal has passed, or

(ii) where an appeal is taken against the conviction and the appeal is disallowed, one month from the determination of the appeal,

and the disqualification shall be for 5 years from the date of conviction or determination of the appeal, as the case may be.

(3) Nothing in this section operates to prejudice any disqualification referred to in section 182 or in section 20 of the Local Elections (Disclosure of Donations and Expenditure) Act, 1999 , or in any other enactment.

Prohibition on multiple membership of local authorities.

14.—(1) A person shall not hold membership simultaneously of—

(a) more than one local authority of the same class, or

(b) a city council and town council.

(2) For the purposes of this section, local authorities shall be deemed to consist of the following 2 classes:

(a) county councils and city councils;

(b) town councils.

Offence to act when disqualified.

15.—(1) A person is guilty of an offence if he or she knowingly acts as a member of a local authority when disqualified, or knowingly votes when prohibited by or under any enactment.

(2) A person guilty of an offence under this section is liable on summary conviction to a fine not exceeding £1,500 for each such offence.

(3) An offence under this section may be prosecuted by a local government elector or a local authority.

(4) This section is without prejudice to any other disqualification or penalty arising out of the actions of the person concerned.

Cesser of membership.

16.—(1) A person ceases to be a member of a local authority and a casual vacancy arises in its membership immediately upon he or she becoming disqualified from membership of a local authority under section 13 or 182, or under section 20 of the Local Elections (Disclosure of Donations and Expenditure) Act, 1999 .

(2) When a person ceases to be a member of a local authority under this section he or she also ceases to be a member of any body to which he or she—

(a) was elected, nominated or appointed by a local authority, or

(b) is a member by virtue of being a member of a local authority.

(3) Nothing in subsection (1) or (2) shall be read so as to affect the validity of anything previously done by the person while a member of the local authority or of the body concerned.

(4) A person to whom a disqualification referred to in subsection (1) applies is so disqualified from being or becoming a member of any committee, joint committee or joint body.

Term of office.

17.—(1) In this section—

“incoming members” has the meaning given in subsection (3)(b);

“ordinary day of retirement”, in relation to the outgoing members of a local authority, means the seventh day—

(a) after the polling day at the election of the incoming members of the local authority, or

(b) where the poll for any local electoral area of the local authority or for any polling station at the election of incoming members of the local authority is for any reason countermanded, interrupted or adjourned, after the day on which the poll is completed or the fresh poll is held.

(2) Subject to this Act, the members of a local authority hold office until the next ordinary day of retirement and retire together on that day as provided for by this section.

(3) On the ordinary day of retirement—

(a) each of the outgoing members of the local authority retires, and

(b) each person elected at the election comes into office as a member of the local authority (in this section collectively referred to as the “incoming members”).

(4) The term of office of a member of a local authority continues until the next ordinary day of retirement of members of the local authority, unless such member sooner dies, resigns, becomes disqualified, is removed from office or otherwise ceases to be a member of the local authority.

Resignation from membership.

18.—(1) A member of a local authority may resign from membership by notice in writing signed by him or her and delivered to the principal offices of the local authority.

(2) A person ceases to be a member of the local authority—

(a) on the date specified in the notice as the resignation date, or

(b) where no date is specified, on receipt of the notice,

and accordingly a casual vacancy occurs in the membership of the local authority.

(3) A person who resigns from membership of a local authority under this section also ceases on such resignation to be a member of any body—

(a) to which he or she was elected, nominated or appointed by the local authority, or

(b) of which he or she is a member by virtue of being a member of the local authority.

(4) (a) A person shall be deemed to have resigned from membership of a local authority where the person is absent from attendance at any meeting of the authority for a continuous period of 6 consecutive months (“the relevant period”) from the date (“the relevant date”) of his or her last attendance at a meeting of the authority.

(b) paragraph (a) does not apply where the absence was—

(i) due to illness, or

(ii) in good faith for another reason,

and which, in either case, is accepted by the local authority and approved by resolution under this paragraph before the end of the relevant period, in which case the period shall stand extended to 12 months from the relevant date.

(c) Where a resolution is passed under paragraph (b) and the continuous period of absence continues uninterrupted—

(i) due to illness, or

(ii) in good faith for another reason,

and, in either case, is accepted by the local authority and approved by resolution under this paragraph before the expiry of the relevant period as extended under paragraph (b), then the period shall stand extended to 18 months from the relevant date.

(d) A casual vacancy under this subsection occurs on the next day after—

(i) in the case of paragraph (a), the end of the relevant period,

(ii) in the case of paragraph (b), the end of the relevant period as extended under that paragraph, or

(iii) in the case of paragraph (c), the end of the relevant period as extended to 18 months under that paragraph.

(5) Attendance as a member at a meeting of any committee or joint committee or joint body of the authority shall be deemed for the purposes of subsection (4) to be attendance at a meeting of the authority.

Casual vacancies.

19.—(1) A casual vacancy in the membership of a local authority occurs—

(a) where section 16 (1) applies,

(b) upon the death or resignation (including deemed resignation by virtue of section 18 (4)) of a member of a local authority,

(c) in such circumstances as are set out in Articles 25, 28 and 124 of the Local Elections Regulations, 1995 ( S.I. No. 297 of 1995 ),

(d) in such circumstances as may be prescribed by regulations made by the Minister under section 27 , or

(e) in such circumstances as are referred to in section 15(1) of the Local Elections (Petitions and Disqualifications) Act, 1974 .

(2) It is the duty of the meetings administrator to notify the members of the local authority in writing on becoming aware that a casual vacancy has or may have occurred.

(3) (a) A casual vacancy shall be filled by the co-option by the local authority of a person to fill the vacancy and except where paragraph (c) or (d) or (e) of subsection (1) apply, subject to such person being nominated by the same registered political party who nominated for election or co-option the member who caused the casual vacancy.

(b) Where the person causing the casual vacancy was a non-party candidate at his or her election to the local authority, the vacancy shall be filled by the co-option by the local authority of a person to fill the vacancy (except where paragraph (c) or (d) or (e) of subsection (1) apply) in accordance with such requirements and procedures as may be set out in its standing orders.

(c) A local authority shall in making standing orders consider the inclusion of provisions for the purposes of paragraph (b).

(4) (a) A co-option shall be made, after due notice, at the next meeting of the local authority after the expiration of 14 days from the occurrence of the vacancy or as soon after the expiration of the 14 days as circumstances permit.

(b) In this subsection “due notice” means not less than 3 clear days' notice given in writing to every member of the local authority.

(5) A person is not to be proposed at a meeting of the local authority for co-option without his or her prior written consent.

(6) A person co-opted to fill a casual vacancy shall be a member of the local authority until the next ordinary day of retirement of members of that local authority unless he or she sooner ceases to be a member.

Savers (Part 3).

20.—(1) The acts, decisions and proceedings of a local authority shall not be invalidated only because of a vacancy or vacancies in its membership or of the disqualification or want of qualification of any of its members.

(2) Subsection (1) is without prejudice to the requirements of paragraph 11 of Schedule 10 in respect of the quorum for a meeting of a local authority.

(3) Any person who immediately before the establishment day is a member of a local authority shall, on and from such day, continue as such member subject to and in accordance with this Act.

(4) A person to whom subsection (3) applies and who is an alderman shall continue to bear that title until the next ordinary day of retirement after the commencement of this provision, or until his or her otherwise ceasing to be a member of the local authority, whichever is the earlier.

Number of members of local authorities, etc.

21.—(1) Subject to section 22 and without prejudice to section 40 (7), each county council and city council consists of the number of members specified in Parts 1 and 2, respectively, of Schedule 7 opposite the reference to the county council or city council concerned.

(2) (a) The number of members of a town council referred to in Part 3 of Schedule 7 is 12.

(b) Subject to section 22 (5), the number of members of any other town council is 9.

(3) Without prejudice to paragraph 11 of Schedule 10, where a provision of this Act provides that at least a specified proportion of the total number of members of a local authority is necessary in relation to the doing of any particular act, then in a case where such proportion consists of a whole number and a remainder, the whole number shall of itself be sufficient.

Alteration of number of members of local authority.

22.—(1) (a) A county council or a city council may by resolution adopt a proposal (in this section referred to as a “proposal”) for the alteration of the number of members of that council.

(b) A proposal under paragraph (a) and a public notice under paragraph (d) shall specify the current number of members of the authority and the number by which it is proposed to be altered and whether by way of increase or decrease.

(c) It is necessary for the adoption of a proposal under paragraph (a) that at least one-half of the total number of members of the authority vote in favour of the resolution.

(d) Before adopting a proposal the local authority shall invite submissions on it from the public by way of a public notice and the authority shall consider any submissions received.

(e) Following the adoption of a resolution under this subsection a local authority may make application to the Minister for an alteration in the number of members.

(2) Where an application has been duly made to the Minister under subsection (1), the Minister may by order alter the number of members of the county council or city council concerned, whether or not to the extent proposed.

(3) (a) Before deciding whether to make an order under subsection (2), the Minister shall request the Local Government Commission to prepare a report with respect to the application and Part 11 applies to such a request and report.

(b) The Local Government Commission may recommend an alteration otherwise than in accordance with the application to the Minister or that no alteration be made.

(c) A report prepared under paragraph (a) shall include such recommendations as the Local Government Commission may consider appropriate in relation to the alteration of local electoral areas under section 23 and the number of members assigned to each of them.

(4) An order under subsection (2) shall not apply to any local elections which occur within 6 months of the making of the order but shall apply to any subsequent local elections.

(5) (a) A town council to which section 21 (2)(b) applies may by resolution adopt a proposal for the alteration to 12 of the number of members of that council where the population of the town concerned exceeds 15,000 as shown in the most recent census.

(b) Subsections (1) to (4) shall apply with any necessary modifications for the purposes of this subsection.

(6) An application under this section shall not be made to the Minister within 5 years of the decision by the Minister on any previous application by the local authority concerned.

PART 4

Local Elections

Local electoral areas.

23.—(1) Subject to subsection (7), the Minister may by order—

(a) divide a county, city or town into local electoral areas, and

(b) in respect of the members of the local authority, fix the number of such members to be elected for each local electoral area.

(2) The number of members of a local authority to which an order under this section relates to be elected at an election of members of the local authority held after the making of the order for each local electoral area specified in the order shall, without prejudice to any subsequent order, be the number fixed by the order for the local electoral area.

(3) Where, on the commencement of this provision, an order is in force dividing a county, city or town into local electoral areas or fixing the number of members for each local electoral area, the order shall continue in force in relation to the county, city or town and be deemed to be an order under this section and may be amended or revoked accordingly.

(4) In respect of any local electoral area in a county, city or town, the Minister may by order—

(a) amend, modify, or revoke any division made by an order under this section, including an order under this subsection or an order deemed by subsection (3) to be an order under this section, or

(b) alter the number of members of the local authority to be elected for a local electoral area by virtue of an order under this section, including an order under this subsection or an order deemed by subsection (3) to be an order under this section.

(5) An order under this section shall first have effect for the purpose of the election of members of the local authority held next after the order is made.

(6) Subject to subsections (1) to (5), at every election of the members of any council of a town which is not divided into local electoral areas there shall be one local electoral area, which shall (subject to regulations made under section 17 of the Local Government Act, 1994 , which are continued in force by virtue of section 30 (1)) consist of the area of such town and all such members shall be elected for such local electoral area.

(7) (a) Before deciding whether to make an order under this section the Minister shall request the Local Government Commission to prepare a report in respect of the relevant county, city or town and Part 11 applies to such a request and report.

(b) In considering making a request under paragraph (a), the Minister may have regard to the extent of population changes in local electoral areas within counties and cities as shown in the latest census report of the Central Statistics Office which—

(i) sets out the population of the State, classified by area, and

(ii) is published following a census of population.

(c) The provisions of an order made under this section shall not vary in any material respect from the recommendations of the Local Government Commission in respect of the relevant county, city or town unless the Minister is satisfied there are substantial reasons for so doing and such order shall set out the reasons for such variation.

(8) A reference to a town under this section shall, subject to part 8, be read as a reference to the area of such town as altered for local electoral purposes only by section 17 of the Local Government Act, 1994 , and regulations made under it.

Right to vote at local elections.

24.—(1) For the purposes of this section and subject to this Part and regulations made under it, every person whose name is on the register of local government electors prepared under Part II of the Electoral Act, 1992 , for the time being in force for a local electoral area (in this Act referred to as the “register of electors”) is entitled to vote at the poll at a local election in that area.

(2) A person's name shall be taken to be on the register of electors if it includes a name which, in the opinion of the returning officer or presiding officer, was intended to be the person's name.

(3) A person who has voted at a local election shall not in any legal proceeding be required to state for whom he or she has voted.

(4) A person who—

(a) is registered in the register of electors for the time being in force for a local electoral area but is not entitled to be so registered, or

(b) is not registered in the register of electors,

shall not vote at the poll at a local election in that area.

(5) Nothing in this section shall be read so as to entitle any person to vote who is not entitled to do so, or as relieving that person from any penalties to which that person may be liable to, for voting.

Prohibition of plural voting.

25.—(1) A person shall not vote or apply for a ballot paper—

(a) more than once at an election of the members of a local authority otherwise than under Article 64 of the Local Elections Regulations, 1995,

(b) more than once at an election for a directly elected Cathaoirleach of a local authority,

(c) at an election of the members of more than one local authority of the same class held at the same local elections,

(d) at a direct election of the Cathaoirleach of more than one local authority of the same class held in conjunction with the same local elections, or

(e) at both an election of the members of a city council and an election of the members of a local authority of the class specified in subsection (2)(b) held at the same local elections.

(2) For the purposes of this section, local authorities shall be deemed to consist of the following 2 classes:

(a) county councils and city councils;

(b) town councils.

(3) (a) A person who contravenes subsection (1) is guilty of an offence and is liable on summary conviction to a fine not exceeding £1,500 or, at the discretion of the court, to imprisonment for a term not exceeding 6 months or to both.

(b) A person who aids, abets, counsels or procures the commission of an offence under subsection (1) is guilty of an offence and is liable:

(i) on summary conviction to a fine not exceeding £1,500, or, at the discretion of the court, to imprisonment for a term not exceeding 6 months or to both, or

(ii) on conviction on indictment, to a fine not exceeding £10,000 or, at the discretion of the court, to imprisonment for a term not exceeding 2 years or to both.

Year of elections to all local authorities.

26.—(1) (a) An election of members of every local authority shall be held in the year 2004 and in every fifth year thereafter.

(b) Nothing in this subsection affects Part 21 of this Act or any order made under that Part.

(2) The poll at local elections shall be held on such day in the month of May or June and shall continue for such period, not being less than 12 hours, between the hours of 7.00 a.m. and 10.30 p.m., as may be fixed by the Minister by order.

(3) An order under this section shall be published in the Iris Oifigiúil as soon as may be after it is made.

Conduct of elections.

27.—(1) (a) Local elections shall be held in accordance with regulations made by the Minister under this section.

(b) If an election is contested, the poll shall be taken according to the system of proportional representation, each local government elector having one transferable vote.

(c) In this subsection “transferable vote” has the meaning given to it by section 37 of the Electoral Act, 1992 .

(2) Without prejudice to the generality of subsection (1), regulations under this section may in particular include provision for all or any of the following matters in relation to local elections:

(a) nominations;

(b) deposits by candidates;

(c) deaths of candidates;

(d) duties of returning officers;

(e) staff of returning officers;

(f) taking of polls and counting of votes;

(g) use, free of charge, of schools and public rooms;

(h) arrangements for postal voting;

(i) arrangements for special voting;

(j) voting by persons in the employment of returning officers;

(k) voting by physically ill or physically disabled local government electors;

(l) polling on islands;

(m) issue of polling information cards;

(n) maintenance of secrecy of voting;

(o) removal of persons misconducting themselves in polling stations;

(p) procedure in cases of disorder or obstruction;

(q) interference with ballot boxes or ballot papers;

(r) election of the same person in more than one local electoral area, or to more than one local authority of the same class within the meaning of section 14 ;

(s) casual vacancies that occur in the circumstances specified in paragraph (r), or occuring in other specified circumstances related to local elections;

(t) the manner in which the costs of local elections are to be paid by local authorities;

(u) provisions corresponding to sections 60, 105, 134 to 154, 156 to 160 and 163 of the Electoral Act, 1992 , with such modifications as appear to the Minister to be appropriate.

(3) Where a provision of regulations under this section corresponds to a provision of the Electoral Act, 1992 , which declares a matter to be an electoral offence, the regulations may provide for a corresponding offence in relation to local elections and lay down a penalty for it which does not exceed the relevant penalty specified in section 157 of that Act.

(4) Regulations made under section 22 of the Local Government Act, 1994 , and in force at the commencement of this provision shall continue in force and have effect as if made under this section and may be amended or revoked accordingly.

(5) Where regulations under this section are proposed to be made, a draft of them shall be laid before each House of the Oireachtas and the regulations shall not be made until a resolution approving of the draft has been passed by each House.

(6) No local election is invalid by reason of non-compliance with any regulations under this section, or any mistake in the use of forms provided for or by any such regulations, if it appears to the court before which the matter is raised:

(a) that the election was conducted in accordance with the principles laid down in the regulations under this section taken as a whole, and

(b) that the non-compliance or mistake did not materially affect the result of the election.

(7) Regulations under this section apply to a new election under Part 21.

(8) Where regulations under this section provide for the issue of polling information cards by a local authority, a decision to issue them is a reserved function.

Temporary arrangements with respect to certain polling districts and register of electors.

28.—(1) In this section the “manager” means—

(a) in relation to any part of a polling district situated in a city, the manager for the city,

(b) in relation to any part of a polling district situated in a county, the manager for the county.

(2) This section applies where after—

(a) the alteration of the boundary of a local authority under Part 8 or otherwise, or

(b) the making of an order under section 23

(i) dividing a county, city or town into local electoral areas, or

(ii) amending or modifying any division made by such an order,

a polling district existing immediately before the alteration or revision or amendment or modification of such division, as the case may be, is not wholly situated within the area of a local authority or of a local electoral area, as the case may be.

(3) Where subsection (2) applies, the manager of the relevant local authority shall, for each part of the polling district situated within the area of the local authority—

(a) join it or parts of it with any adjoining polling district or districts within that area, or

(b) constitute it as a polling district and appoint a polling place for it.

(4) An arrangement made under subsection (3) has effect until, and only until, the first scheme under section 28 of the Electoral Act, 1992 , in relation to the county or city in which the part concerned of the polling district is situated comes into operation after the making of the arrangement.

(5) An arrangement made under subsection (3) shall, as soon as practicable, be notified to the Minister by the manager.

(6) In respect of a part of a polling district referred to in subsection (3), the manager shall make such alterations in relation to the part of the register of electors in force as may be necessary to secure that the part of the register concerned shall be in conformity with the arrangement made under that subsection and may conveniently be used for the purposes of taking a poll.

Consequential appointments to certain other bodies.

29.—(1) The year 2004, and every year after 2004 which is a year in which local elections are held, is an election year for the purposes of the Harbours Act, 1946 .

(2) The year 2004, and every year after 2004 which is a year in which local elections are held, is an election year for the purposes of the Vocational Education Acts, 1930 to 1999.

(3) (a) The appointments made under section 10 of the School Attendance Act, 1926 , which first occur after the commencement of this subsection shall be made in the year 2004 and shall be regarded as quinquennial appointments.

(b) Nothing in paragraph (a) operates to prejudice the power of any person, conferred by or under section 10 of the School Attendance Act, 1926 , to appoint persons to fill casual vacancies among the membership of a school attendance committee.

Savers (Part 4).

30.—(1) Subject to Part 8, regulations made under subsections (1) and (2) of section 17 of the Local Government Act, 1994 , with reference to the Third Schedule to that Act altering local authority boundaries for electoral purposes only shall continue in force, notwithstanding the repeal of those provisions by this Act.

(2) Subject to Part 8, the area of any county or town (including any borough or urban district) the boundary of which was altered for electoral purposes only under section 17 of the Local Government Act, 1994 , is for such purposes the area so altered and the local government electors standing registered in respect of such area are entitled to vote at the local elections to be held in 2004 and from then on.

PART 5

Cathaoirleach and Leas-Chathaoirleach

Chapter 1

General

Cathaoirleach and Leas-Chathaoirleach.

31.—(1) Subject to this Part each local authority shall have a chairperson and vice-chairperson who shall be elected and hold office in accordance with this Part and who in this Act are referred to as “Cathaoirleach” and “Leas-Chathaoirleach”, respectively, and shall be so known except where the provisions of section 32 apply.

(2) The holders of the offices of Cathaoirleach and Leas-Chathaoirleach shall as appropriate be styled—

(a) in the case of a county council, in the Irish language “Cathaoirleach Chontae .......” and “Leas-Chathaoirleach Chontae .......” followed by the name of the county in Irish, and in the English language “Cathaoirleach of the County of .......” and “Leas-Chathaoirleach of the County of .......” followed by the name of the county in English,

(b) in the case of a city council, in the Irish language “Cathaoirleach Chathair .......” and “Leas-Chathaoirleach Chathair .......” followed by the name of the city in Irish, and in the English language “Cathaoirleach of the City of .......” and “Leas-Chathaoirleach of the City of .......” followed by the name of the city in English,

(c) in the case of a town council, in the Irish language “Cathaoirleach Bhaile .......” and “Leas-Chathaoirleach Bhaile .......” followed by the name of the town in Irish, and in the English language “Cathaoirleach of the Town of .......” and “Leas-Chathaoirleach of the Town of .......” followed by the name of the town in English.

(d) in the case of a borough council, in the Irish language “Cathaoirleach Bhuirg .......” and “Leas-Chathaoirleach Bhuirg .......” followed by the name of the borough in Irish, and in the English language “Cathaoirleach of the Borough of .......” and “Leas-Chathaoirleach of the Borough of .......” followed by the name of the borough in English.

(3) Any reference in any other enactment to the lord mayor, mayor, chairman, deputy lord mayor, deputy mayor or vice-chairman or cognate words shall, where the context so requires, be read as a reference to the Cathaoirleach or Leas-Chathaoirleach or other title standing for the time being by virtue of section 32 , as the case may be.

(4) The Cathaoirleach shall take precedence at all meetings of the local authority and all proceedings of the elected council.

(5) Anything authorised or required by this Act or otherwise by law to be done by, to or with the Cathaoirleach may where necessary be done by, to or with the Leas-Chathaoirleach of the local authority.

(6) The Cathaoirleach may, where the Leas-Chathaoirleach is unavailable, nominate from among the other members of the local authority a member for the purpose of representing the Cathaoirleach at any ceremony or event in that capacity and that member shall be entitled to act in that capacity for such purpose.

(7) Where a casual vacancy occurs in the office of Cathaoirleach of a local authority, the Leas-Chathaoirleach shall assume the responsibilities of the office pending the election in accordance with this Part of a Cathaoirleach.

(8) A person holding the office of Cathaoirleach or Leas-Chathaoirleach on the commencement of this provision shall continue to hold that office in accordance with this Part.

(9) Subject to this Act, an outgoing Cathaoirleach or Leas-Chathaoirleach shall be eligible for re-election.

(10) This Chapter, subject to subsection (11), shall apply to a Cathaoirleach or Leas-Chathaoirleach elected in accordance with Chapter 2 or Chapter 3 of this Part.

(11) Section 34 shall apply to a Cathaoirleach or Leas-Chathaoirleach elected in 2004 in accordance with Chapter 2 or Chapter 3 of this Part and thereafter.

Alternative titles to Cathaoirleach and Leas-Chathaoirleach, etc.

32.—(1) Where prior to the commencement of section 31

(a) Cork City Council or Dublin City Council used the title “Lord Mayor” or “Deputy Lord Mayor”,

(b) any other city council used the title “Mayor” or “Deputy Mayor”, or

(c) any borough council referred to in Chapter 1 of Part 1 of Schedule 6 used the title “Mayor” or “Deputy Mayor”,

to describe its office of Cathaoirleach or Leas-Chathaoirleach as the case may be, it shall continue to so use such title or titles notwithstanding the provisions of section 31 .

(2) A local authority referred to in subsection (1) may by resolution give the title Cathaoirleach or Leas-Chathaoirleach to its Lord Mayor or Deputy Lord Mayor, Mayor or Deputy Mayor, as the case may be, and in that case shall be styled in accordance with section 31 .

(3) Where titles are continued in accordance with subsection (1), the holders of the offices concerned shall, as appropriate, be styled—

(a) in the case of Cork City Council, in the Irish language “Ard-Mhéara Chathair Chorcaí” and “Leas Ard-Mhéara Chathair Chorcaí”, and in the English language “Lord Mayor of the City of Cork” and “Deputy Lord Mayor of the City of Cork”,

(b) in the case of Dublin City Council, in the Irish language “Ard-Mhéara Chathair Bhaile Átha Cliath” and “Leas Ard-Mhéara Chathair Bhaile Átha Cliath”, and in the English language “Lord Mayor of the City of Dublin” and “Deputy Lord Mayor of the City of Dublin”,

(c) in the case of any other city council, in the Irish language “Méara Chathair .......” and “Leas-Mhéara Chathair .......” followed by the name of the city in Irish, and in the English language “Mayor of the City of .......” and “Deputy Mayor of the City of .......” followed by the name of the city in English,

(d) in the case of a borough council, in the Irish language “Méara Bhuirg .......” and “Leas-Mhéara Bhuirg .......” followed by the name of the borough in Irish, and in the English language “Mayor of the Borough of .......” and “Deputy Mayor of the Borough of .......” followed by the name of the borough in English.

(4) Notwithstanding the provisions of section 31 a local authority may subject to the provisions of Schedule 8 give an alternative title to its Cathaoirleach or Leas-Chathaoirleach or revert to the title or titles of Cathaoirleach or Leas-Chathaoirleach as the case may be.

Resignation of Cathaoirleach or Leas-Chathaoirleach.

33.—(1) The Cathaoirleach or Leas-Chathaoirleach may resign from that office by notice in writing signed by him or her and delivered to the principal offices of the local authority.

(2) The vacancy caused by a resignation under subsection (1) shall occur on the date specified in the notice as the resignation date or, where no such date is specified, on receipt of such notice.

Removal of Cathaoirleach or Leas-Chathaoirleach from office.

34.—(1) Subject to this section, a local authority may by resolution remove from office the Cathaoirleach or Leas-Chathaoirleach of such local authority for stated misbehaviour or if his or her removal appears to them to be necessary for the effective performance by the local authority of its functions.

(2) Notice of the intention to propose a resolution under this section (in this section referred to as a “notice”) shall—

(a) be signed by at least one-third of the total number of members of the local authority concerned,

(b) contain a statement of the reasons for the proposed removal,

(c) specify a day for the holding of a special meeting to consider the proposed removal, being a day which is not less than 21 days after the day on which the notice is delivered under paragraph (d),

(d) be delivered to the meetings administrator, and

(e) be delivered or sent to the Cathaoirleach or Leas-Chathaoirleach concerned.

(3) The meetings administrator shall on receipt of a notice and without delay send a copy of it to every member of the local authority and convene a special meeting for the date so specified to consider the proposed removal.

(4) (a) Such special meeting shall be chaired by a member of the local authority, other than the person the subject of the notice, chosen by the members present at the meeting.

(b) The person the subject of the notice shall at such meeting be afforded an opportunity to make a statement of response in relation to the proposed removal.

(5) It is necessary for the passing of a resolution under this section that at least three-quarters of the total number of members of the local authority concerned vote in favour of the resolution.

Chapter 2

Election by Local Authority

Application of Chapter 2.

35.—(1) Subject to this Part the arrangements set out in this Chapter shall apply and have effect in respect of the Cathaoirleach and Leas-Chathaoirleach of a local authority but in respect of the Cathaoirleach of a county council and a city council shall so apply and have effect until, and only until, the coming into operation of Chapter 3.

(2) After the coming into operation of Chapter 3 nothing in subsection (1) shall be read so as to restrict the continued application of this Chapter to—

(a) the Cathaoirleach of a town council or,

(b) the Leas-Chathaoirleach of any local authority.

Annual election of Cathaoirleach and Leas-Chathaoirleach by local authority.

36.—(1) (a) Subject to paragraph (c), a local authority shall elect a Cathaoirleach and Leas-Chathaoirleach from amongst its members at every annual meeting.

(b) The election of a Cathaoirleach shall be carried out in accordance with section 37 .

(c) A member of a local authority who is a member of Dáil Éireann or Seanad Éireann shall be disqualified from being elected or from being a Cathaoirleach or Leas-Chathaoirleach of a local authority.

(2) (a) Subject to subsection (3), a member who holds the office of Cathaoirleach or Leas-Chathaoirleach shall hold that office (unless he or she becomes disqualified under subsection (1)(c), resigns under section 33 or is removed from office under section 34 ) from election until a successor is elected at the next annual meeting of the local authority after that member's election to that office.

(b) In a year in which local elections are to be held under section 26 and notwithstanding subsection (3), subsection (4) shall apply in respect of a Cathaoirleach.

(3) Except as is provided for in subsection (4), the Cathaoirleach or Leas-Chathaoirleach of a local authority shall, upon ceasing to be a member of the authority, cease to be Cathaoirleach or Leas-Chathaoirleach of that authority.

(4) Following a local election the Cathaoirleach shall continue to hold office for the period between the retirement of the outgoing members and the commencement of the annual meeting at which the successor is elected unless he or she sooner dies or resigns from the office or becomes disqualified for local authority membership.

Method of election of Cathaoirleach by local authority.

37.—Subject to paragraph 4 of Schedule 10, the following provisions shall apply and have effect in respect of the election of a Cathaoirleach by the members of a local authority:

(a) one or more than one member may be proposed and seconded for nomination and every person so proposed and seconded who does not reject the nomination shall be a candidate and no other person shall be a candidate otherwise than in accordance with this provision;

(b) where there is only one candidate, such candidate shall be elected;

(c) where there are more than 2 candidates, a poll shall be taken;

(d) if at such poll a majority of the members present vote for any particular candidate, such candidate shall be elected;

(e) if at such poll no candidate receives the votes of a majority of the members present, the candidate receiving the least number of votes shall be excluded from the election, and, subject to paragraph (g), one or more further polls (according as may be necessary) shall be taken;

(f) paragraphs (d) and (e) shall apply in relation to such further poll or polls;

(g) where there are only 2 candidates or where, as a result of one or more polls all the candidates except 2 have been excluded, the question as to which of such candidates shall be elected shall be put to the members present and whichever of such candidates receives the majority of votes cast shall be elected;

(h) if from an equality of votes given to 2 or more candidates any question arises as to which of such candidates is to be excluded or as to which of such candidates is to be elected, such question shall be decided by lot in accordance with paragraph (i);

(i) in deciding any such question by lot, the names of the candidates concerned shall be written on similar slips of paper, the slips shall be folded so as to prevent identification and mixed and drawn at random, and the candidate whose name is first drawn shall be—

(I) the candidate who shall be excluded, where the question concerns an exclusion, or

(II) the candidate who shall be elected, where the question concerns an election.

Casual vacancy in the office of Cathaoirleach or Leas-Chathaoirleach.

38.—(1) Where a casual vacancy occurs in the office of Cathaoirleach or Leas-Chathaoirleach of a local authority the members of the authority—

(a) present at the next meeting of the authority after the occurrence of the vacancy, or

(b) if that meeting is held within 14 days of the occurrence of the vacancy, present at the next following meeting of the authority,

shall elect one of their number to be Cathaoirleach or Leas-Chathaoirleach, as the case may be.

(2) Section 37 shall apply in relation to the election of a member to fill a casual vacancy in the office of Cathaoirleach.

(3) A person elected to fill a casual vacancy in the office of Cathaoirleach or Leas-Chathaoirleach shall be elected for the remainder of the term of office of his or her predecessor.

(4) Not less than 3 clear days' notice shall be given to each member of the local authority of a meeting to fill a casual vacancy under this section.

Chapter 3

Direct Election

Application of Chapter 3.

39.—(1) This Chapter shall apply to county councils and city councils and shall come into operation and have effect for the purposes of direct elections under section 40 in the year 2004 and from then on.

(2) Notwithstanding section 36 (4) a person holding office as Cathaoirleach immediately prior to the local elections in the year 2004 shall cease to hold that office on ceasing to hold office as a member of the local authority concerned.

Direct election and tenure of Cathaoirleach of county council and city council.

40.—(1) (a) Subject to section 41 , a Cathaoirleach of a county council or a city council shall be elected in accordance with this section and such election is referred to as a “direct election” and section 24 shall apply in respect of such election.

(b) For the purposes of a direct election there shall be one electoral area which shall consist of the area of the county or city concerned and it shall be called the county-wide electoral area or city-wide electoral area, as the case may be.

(c) The references in section 24 to local electoral area and local election shall, for the purposes of paragraph (a), be read as references to a county-wide electoral area or city-wide electoral area and to a direct election.

(2) (a) The Minister shall make regulations for the purpose of holding direct elections.

(b) Regulations under this section shall provide that direct elections are held on the same day and at the same time as local elections (except a bye-election under section 41 ) and may include any provisions necessary for the purposes of this section including—

(i) any matter for which provision may be made in regulations under section 27 ,

(ii) provisions for the purposes of a bye-election under section 41 including the fixing by the Minister of the polling day and times of voting.

(iii) any other provisions necessary for or connected with the holding of a direct election.

(c) Regulations under this section may be made separately or as one with regulations under section 27 and subsections (3) to (8) of that section shall apply to regulations made under this section.

(3) (a) If a direct election is contested, a poll shall be taken, each local government elector having one transferable vote.

(b) In this subsection “transferable vote” has the meaning given to it by section 37 of the Electoral Act, 1992 .

(4) A person who is not eligible for election to a local authority, or to whom a disqualification referred to in section 13 or 182 or in section 20 of the Local Elections (Disclosure of Donations and Expenditure) Act, 1999 , applies, or who is a member of either House of the Oireachtas, is disqualified from being elected or from being a Cathaoirleach.

(5) Subject to subsection (8), sections 33 and 34, a Cathaoirleach elected in accordance with this section at a direct election held in conjunction with a local election shall come into office as Cathaoirleach on the same day as he or she comes into office as a member of the local authority and shall hold office as Cathaoirleach until the next ordinary day of retirement of members of that authority.

(6) A person elected by direct election as Cathaoirleach in accordance with this section shall not hold office for more than 2 consecutive terms (excluding any period under section 41 ) and shall be disqualified from election as Cathaoirleach at an election which would provide a third consecutive term.

(7) Where a person is elected Cathaoirleach by direct election and such person is not elected as a member of the local authority then for so long and only for so long as such person is Cathaoirleach and is not such a member, he or she shall for all purposes of this Act by virtue of this subsection be deemed for that period to be a member of the local authority and the number of members of that authority shall accordingly be increased by one for such period.

(8) A Cathaoirleach elected in accordance with this Chapter shall upon ceasing for any reason to be a member of the local authority concerned cease also to be the Cathaoirleach of such authority.

(9) In this section a reference to a person being disqualified from being elected as Cathaoirleach shall be read as including a disqualification from nomination for election as Cathaoirleach.

Casual vacancy in office of Cathaoirleach of county council or city council.

41.—(1) In any case where at the time of a casual vacancy occurring in the office of Cathaoirleach of a county council or city council the term of office then remaining exceeds 12 months, a bye-election shall be held to fill that vacancy by direct election in accordance with section 40 .

(2) In any other case, the council shall elect as Cathaoirleach a person from among their number and section 37 shall apply to such election.

(3) A person elected to fill a casual vacancy in the office of Cathaoirleach shall hold office for the remainder of the term of office of his or her predecessor.

(4) Regulations under section 40 may include provisions in relation to the filling of casual vacancies and related matters.

Amendments to certain Acts, relating to direct elections, etc.

42.—The Electoral Act, 1992 , the Electoral Act, 1997 , and the Litter Pollution Act, 1997 , are amended in the manner stated in Schedule 9.

Election petitions in relation to direct elections.

43.—(1) The Local Elections (Petitions and Disqualifications) Act, 1974 (in this section referred to as the “Act of 1974”), shall apply to direct elections as if references to local elections were to read as references to direct elections.

(2) For the purpose of the application by virtue of this section of the Act of 1974 to direct elections—

(a) section 8(2) of that Act shall apply as if “section 40 of the Local Government Act, 2001”, were substituted for “section 82 of the Act of 1963”, and

(b) section 15(3) of that Act shall apply as if “filled by bye-election under section 41 (1) of the Local Government Act, 2001, unless subsection (2) of that section applies.” were substituted for “filled as casual vacancies.”.

PART 6

Meetings and Proceedings of Local Authorities

Application (Part 6).

44.—(1) This Part and Schedule 10 apply and have effect in relation to the meetings and proceedings of local authorities and to connected matters.

(2) Meetings of a local authority or a joint body may be held in Irish or in English or in both languages.

(3) In respect of meetings and proceedings of joint bodies, the Minister may by regulations under this subsection—

(a) make provisions corresponding to those provided for local authorities under this Part and Schedule 10,

(b) apply this Part or Schedule 10, with any necessary modification or adaptation,

and any such provisions apply and have effect in relation to such meetings and proceedings.

(4) (a) Subject to paragraph (b), any provision provided for by or under statute relating to meetings and proceedings of a joint body to which that paragraph relates, and in force immediately before the commencement of this provision, continues in operation until it ceases to have effect under paragraph (b).

(b) On the commencement of regulations under subsection (3), the matters with respect to which the regulations were made are governed by those regulations, and any previous provisions (whether made by or under statute) as may be specified in those regulations relating to those matters cease to have effect as respects the body mentioned in the regulations to such extent as may be so specified.

Attendance of public and media at meetings.

45.—(1) In this section—

“media” includes accredited representatives of local and national press, local and national radio and local and national television;

“members of the public” means any person who is not attending the meeting at the request of the local authority.

(2) Subject to subsections (3) and (5), members of the public and representatives of the media are entitled to be present at a meeting of a local authority.

(3) Where a local authority is of the opinion that the absence of members of the public and representatives of the media from the whole or any part of a particular meeting is desirable because—

(a) of the special nature of the meeting, or of an item of business to be, or about to be, considered at the meeting, or

(b) for other special reasons,

the authority may by resolution decide to meet in committee for the whole or a part of the meeting concerned, where the authority considers that such action is not contrary to the overall public interest.

(4) (a) It is necessary for the passing of a resolution under subsection (3) that at least one-half of the total number of members of the local authority concerned vote in favour of the resolution.

(b) A resolution under subsection (3) shall indicate in a general way the reasons for the resolution and those reasons shall be recorded in the minutes of the meeting.

(5) A local authority may, by standing orders, regulate the right of members of the public and representatives of the media to be present at meetings and, in particular and without prejudice to the generality of the foregoing, may—

(a) taking account of available space, limit the number of persons to be admitted,

(b) make rules governing the conduct of persons present at meetings,

(c) provide for the removal of members of the public who interrupt the proceedings or who otherwise misconduct themselves, or

(d) make rules in relation to the taking of photographs or the use of any means for recording or relaying the proceedings as they take place or at a later stage.

(6) Nothing in subsection (5), other than paragraph (a), shall be read so as to enable a local authority to limit the attendance of representatives of the media, and paragraph (a) shall not be read as enabling a local authority to prohibit the attendance of such representatives.

Meetings administrator.

46.—The manager shall from time to time as may be necessary assign the duties of meetings administration to an employee (referred to in this Act as a “meetings administrator”) of a local authority.

Effective discharge of business.

47.—A local authority shall seek to secure as regards the establishment of committees under Part 7 and as regards meetings of the authority and its committees, that they are organised and operate so as to promote effectiveness and efficiency in the discharge of business.

PART 7

Committees and Joint Committees

Strategic policy committees.

48.—(1) A local authority, being a county council or city council, shall establish by resolution committees to be known as strategic policy committees to consider matters connected with the formulation, development, monitoring and review of policy which relate to the functions of the local authority and to advise the authority on those matters.

(2) (a) A strategic policy committee consists partly of persons who are and partly of persons who are not members of the local authority concerned.

(b) The chairperson of a strategic policy committee shall be a member of the local authority concerned.

(3) (a) The establishment of a strategic policy committee shall be undertaken by the local authority in accordance with such guidelines as may be issued by the Minister for that purpose under section 54 (2).

(b) Guidelines referred to in paragraph (a) shall include provision for—

(i) the representation of sectoral interests,

(ii) the term of office of—

(I) members of strategic policy committees, and

(II) chairpersons, which shall not be less than 3 years,

and

(iii) the procedures to apply to ensure fairness and equity in the appointment of chairpersons.

(c) Any guidelines issued by the Minister prior to the commencement of this section and relating to strategic policy committees continue to apply until such time as guidelines are issued under section 54 (2).

(4) Subject to subsection (5), a member of a local authority who is a member of either House of the Oireachtas is disqualified from being elected or from being a chairperson of a strategic policy committee.

(5) Subsection (4) has effect for the purposes of any election of a chairperson of a strategic policy committee held after the commencement of this section.

(6) An annual report of a local authority shall include an outline of the activities of strategic policy committees during the period to which the annual report relates.

Municipal policy committees.

49.—(1) A town council may establish by resolution a committee to be known as a municipal policy committee to consider matters connected with the formulation, development, monitoring and review of policy which relate to the functions of the town council and to advise the town council on those matters.

(2) A municipal policy committee consists partly of persons who are and partly of persons who are not members of the town council concerned.

(3) (a) The establishment of a municipal policy committee shall be undertaken by a town council in accordance with such guidelines as may be issued by the Minister for that purpose under section 54 (2).

(b) The chairperson of a municipal policy committee shall be a member of the town council concerned.

(4) Subsections (3) to (6) of section 48 apply to a municipal policy committee as if the references to a strategic policy committee were references to a municipal policy committee.

Area committees.

50.—(1) A local authority which is a county council or city council may establish by resolution a committee in respect of a local electoral area or of 2 or more adjoining such areas or any other area in its administrative area to be known by some appropriate name followed by the words “Area Committee”, or by such other title, as may be designated by the authority.

(2) Where the Cathaoirleach of a town council is not otherwise a member of an area committee within whose area such town is situated he or she shall, by virtue of his or her office, be a member of such area committee.

Committees of local authorities.

51.—(1) If a local authority considers it appropriate, it may by resolution establish either or both—

(a) one or more than one committee to consider matters connected with the functions of the authority referred to it by the authority and to assist and advise the authority on those matters, and

(b) one or more than one committee to perform functions of the authority delegated to it under this section but may not delegate generally all of its functions to any committee.

(2) (a) A local authority may, by resolution, delegate with or without restrictions to a committee established under subsection (1)(b) any of its functions that may be performed by resolution other than—

(i) the power to adopt the local authority budget,

(ii) the power to make a development plan, or to make a variation of a development plan, under Part II of the Act of 2000,

(iii) the power to determine an annual rate on valuation or borrow money, or

(iv) any other functions as may be prescribed by regulations made by the Minister.

(b) It is necessary for the passing of a resolution under paragraph (a) that at least one-half of the total number of members of the local authority concerned vote in favour of the resolution.

(3) A local authority may, by resolution, dissolve a committee established by it but the dissolution is without prejudice to anything previously done by the committee.

(4) (a) The members of a committee first appointed shall be appointed by resolution of the local authority by which it was established and subsequent appointments shall be by such resolution or in such other manner as that local authority may provide for by resolution.

(b) A committee consists of such number of persons, not being less than 3, as the local authority by which it was established considers appropriate.

(c) Subject to paragraph (d), a committee may at the discretion of the local authority by which it was established, consist either wholly of persons who are members of that authority or partly of persons who are, and partly of persons who are not, such members.

(d) A person who is not a member of the local authority concerned shall not be appointed to be a member of a committee unless, in the opinion of the authority, he or she is a person having knowledge, qualifications or experience relevant to the functions of the committee.

(5) Notwithstanding the repeal or revocation under section 5 of an enactment by or under which a committee of a local authority stood established immediately before such repeal or revocation the committee shall continue to stand established after such repeal or revocation as if it was established under this section and this Part applies and has effect accordingly in relation to it.

(6) Unless dissolved in accordance with subsection (3) a committee shall be deemed to be dissolved on the ordinary day of retirement of members of the local authority concerned in accordance with section 17 .

(7) A reference to a committee in this section includes a committee established under section 50 .

(8) Nothing in this section prejudices the establishment and continued operation of a local consultative committee.

Joint committees of local authorities.

52.—(1) In this section “local authority” includes such other bodies (if any) as may be prescribed by regulations made by the Minister.

(2) If 2 or more local authorities consider it appropriate to do so, they may, by resolution of each of the authorities, jointly establish either or both—

(a) a joint committee of those authorities to consider matters connected with the functions of the authorities specified in the resolution and to advise the authorities on those matters, and

(b) a joint committee of those authorities to perform functions of those authorities delegated to it by them under subsection (6).

(3) A local authority may join in the establishment of more than one joint committee.

(4) More than one joint committee may be established by the same local authorities.

(5) Where resolutions under subsection (2)(b) relating to a joint committee, with the consent of the Minister, so provide—

(a) the joint committee shall be a body corporate with perpetual succession and be known by such name as may be specified in the resolutions or determined by the joint committee,

(b) the joint committee may sue and be sued in its corporate name,

(c) the joint committee has power to acquire, hold, manage, maintain and dispose of land or an interest in land,

(d) the joint committee shall have a common seal which shall be authenticated by the signature of the chairperson, or of an employee nominated in writing for that purpose by the manager, following consultation with the chairperson,

(e) judicial notice shall be taken of the seal of the joint committee and every document claiming to be an instrument made by it and to be sealed with its seal, claiming to be authenticated in accordance with paragraph (d), shall be received in evidence and be deemed to be that instrument without further proof unless the contrary is shown.

(6) (a) Subject to this subsection a local authority by resolution, and with the consent of the other authorities concerned, may delegate with or without restrictions to a joint committee established under subsection (2)(b) any of its functions that may be performed by resolution.

(b) Paragraph (a) does not apply to the functions of a local authority to adopt the local authority budget or to determine an annual rate on valuation or any other functions as may be prescribed by regulations made by the Minister.

(c) It is necessary for the passing of a resolution under paragraph (a) that at least one-half of the total number of members of the local authority concerned vote in favour of the resolution.

(7) The Minister may direct a local authority—

(a) to establish a joint committee under subsection (2) with one or more other local authorities as may be specified in the direction, and

(b) where appropriate, subject to such (if any) conditions or restrictions as may be specified in the direction, to delegate to the joint committee such of the functions of the local authority as may be specified in the direction,

upon and subject to such terms and conditions as may be specified in the direction.

(8) A joint committee may be dissolved by resolution of any one of the local authorities by which it was established with, in the case of a joint committee established by virtue of a direction under subsection (7), or to which subsection (5) applies, the consent of the Minister, but the dissolution is without prejudice to anything previously done by the committee.

(9) Where a joint committee is established under subsection (2)(b) such executive functions as may be appropriate to the functions delegated under that subsection shall vest in the manager for that joint committee.

(10) (a) The members of a joint committee shall be appointed by the local authorities by which it was established by each authority appointing such number of persons to be members of the joint committee as may be agreed upon by those authorities.

(b) A joint committee consists of 6 or more persons, as is agreed by the local authorities by which it was established and may, subject to paragraph (c), at the discretion of those authorities, be composed either wholly of persons who are members of those authorities or partly of persons who are, and partly of persons who are not, such members.

(c) A person who is not a member of one of the local authorities concerned shall not be appointed to be a member of a joint committee unless, in the opinion of the authority by which he or she is so appointed, he or she possesses knowledge, qualifications or experience relevant to the functions of the joint committee.

(11) (a) Notwithstanding the repeal or revocation under section 5 of an enactment by or under which a joint committee of a local authority stood established immediately before such repeal or revocation, the committee shall continue to stand established after such repeal or revocation as if it was established under this section and this Part applies and has effect accordingly in relation to it.

(b) Except as provided for by this section or otherwise by law, it is not lawful for local authorities to establish a joint committee or to delegate any of their functions to a joint committee.

Saver for acts of committee or joint committee.

53.—The acts, decisions and proceedings of any committee or joint committee of a local authority shall not be invalidated only because of a vacancy or vacancies in its membership or of the disqualification or want of qualification of any of its members.

Regulations (Part 7).

54.—(1) The Minister may make regulations—

(a) specifying conditions, restrictions or other provisions which apply in relation to the delegation of functions to, or the revocation of a delegation of functions to, a joint committee to which section 52 (2) applies or to a committee,

(b) as respects the procedures, general administration and general finances of joint committees to which section 52 (2) applies,

(c) providing for the attendance of members of the public and representatives of the media at meetings of joint committees or committees other than those—

(i) specified in the regulations, or

(ii) at which the local authority concerned, in accordance with such procedures as may be specified in the regulations, determines such attendance is not permitted,

and section 45 (3) and (4) shall apply to such attendance at meetings of joint committees or committees subject to any necessary modifications,

(d) as respects such other matters relating to joint committees or committees as the Minister considers appropriate.

(2) The Minister may issue general policy guidelines to local authorities for the purposes of any provision of this Part and the authorities shall comply with any such guidelines.

PART 8

Local Authority Boundary Alteration

Interpretation (Part 8).

55.—In this Part—

“application” shall be read in accordance with section 57 ;

“proposer”, “proposal”, “respondent”, “statement of response” and “amended proposal” shall be read in accordance with section 56 .

Proposal by local authority for alteration of boundary.

56.—(1) (a) A county council or city council may, by resolution, adopt a proposal that the boundary of the county or city be altered in accordance with this Part.

(b) A town council may, by resolution, adopt a proposal that the boundary of the town be altered in accordance with this Part.

(c) A county council may, by resolution, adopt a proposal that the boundary of any town situated in such county be altered in accordance with this Part.

(d) A county council and a town council may jointly adopt a proposal that the boundary of a county be altered in accordance with this Part so as to incorporate an area in an adjoining county, with provision for the simultaneous alteration of the boundary of such town to coincide with the county boundary so altered.

(e) A proposal shall specify the alteration to which it relates by reference to a map.

(2) (a) A local authority which makes a proposal under subsection (1) and a proposal so made are referred to in this Part, respectively, as a “proposer” and a “proposal”.

(b) For the purposes of subsection (1)(d) the proposer shall be a county council.

(3) A proposer shall—

(a) furnish a copy of the proposal to each local authority whose boundary is affected by the proposal and such other local authorities as may be prescribed by regulations made by the Minister and each authority so affected by a proposal is referred to in this Part as a “respondent”,

(b) publish a notice of the proposal in the form so prescribed giving details of the proposal and inviting submissions with regard to it from any person concerned within such period as is specified in the notice, and

(c) otherwise inform such persons of the proposal as may be so prescribed.

(4) (a) Within 6 months from the receipt by each respondent of a copy of the proposal or such longer period as may be agreed upon by the proposer and the respondent, each respondent shall consider the proposal and make a statement of its response to the proposal (in this Part referred to as a “statement of response”), and furnish a copy of it to the proposer.

(b) The making of a statement of response is a reserved function.

(5) Following consideration by a proposer of any submission that it receives within the period referred to in subsection (3)(b) and of any statement of response furnished to it in accordance with subsection (4)(a), the proposer may by resolution amend the proposal in such manner as it thinks fit and a proposal so amended is referred to in this Part as an “amended proposal”.

Application for boundary alteration.

57.—(1) Upon the expiration, in relation to a proposal, of the periods referred to in subsections (3)(b) and (4)(a) of section 56 , a proposer may make application (in this Part referred to as an “application”) to the Local Government Commission for the making of a report in relation to the boundary to which the proposal or the amended proposal, as the case may be, relates.

(2) An application shall be accompanied by the proposal, any submissions received by the proposer, the statement of response from each respondent and any amended proposal.

(3) A decision to make an application under subsection (1) is a reserved function.

Supplementary provision to sections 56 and 57.

58.—(1) A proposal, a statement of response and any amended proposal shall set out—

(a) the financial and other implications of the proposal or of the amended proposal, as the case may be, and

(b) the adjustments in relation to financial, administrative or other matters to be made between the proposer and each respondent concerned as a consequence of the alteration of the boundary concerned.

(2) (a) A proposer shall furnish a copy of the application made by it to each respondent and to such other persons as may be prescribed by regulations made by the Minister.

(b) A proposal, a statement of response, an amended proposal and an application shall comply with such requirements as may be so prescribed.

(c) The Minister may prescribe by regulations any matter of procedure or any other requirement which he or she considers necessary for the satisfactory operation of this section or sections 56 and 57.

Minister may request review.

59.—(1) The Minister may request the Local Government Commission to prepare a report in relation to the boundary of any local authority and the Commission shall comply with such request.

(2) A copy of any such request shall be sent by the Minister to the local authorities concerned.

Report by Local Government Commission.

60.—(1) Where an application is made by a proposer to the Local Government Commission under section 57 , then following consideration by it of the application, it shall either—

(a) prepare a report in accordance with subsection (5), or

(b) notify the proposer and the respondent in writing that for stated reasons set out in the notification it considers it inappropriate to deal with the application.

(2) Where an application referred to in subsection (1) has the agreement of each respondent, the Commission shall carry out its functions under that subsection as a matter of priority and shall accordingly ensure that the application is dealt with as expeditiously as possible.

(3) A notification under subsection (1)(b) may refer to such matters as the Commission considers relevant to the particular case.

(4) Where a request is made by the Minister to the Local Government Commission under section 59 , the Commission shall prepare a report in accordance with subsection (5).

(5) Subject to Part 11, the Local Government Commission shall—

(a) review the boundary of the local authority concerned,

(b) make such recommendations with respect to the boundary, or otherwise under subsection (7), that it considers to be necessary in the interests of effective and convenient local government, and

(c) prepare and furnish to the Minister a report in writing of that review and its recommendations, including any recommendations under section 90 (3)(c) in relation to financial and other ancillary or related matters.

(6) A report and recommendations by the Local Government Commission on an application under section 57 may provide for the alteration of a boundary (whether by enlargement or reduction) otherwise than in accordance with the terms of the proposal or amended proposal, as the case may be, or that no alteration be made.

(7) (a) Where the Local Government Commission does not recommend a boundary alteration, it may make such other recommendations affecting the local authorities concerned as are in its opinion—

(i) necessary in the interests of effective and convenient local government, and

(ii) are designed to secure proper organisational arrangements, co-operation, co-ordination and delivery of local government services.

(b) Without prejudice to the generality of paragraph (a), arrangements may relate to—

(i) the delivery of specified services in specified areas by a specified local authority,

(ii) the establishment of a joint committee,

(iii) joint organisational arrangements affecting the area, or

(iv) any matter or thing for which provision may be made in a supplementary order under section 62 .

Power to alter boundaries, etc.

61.—(1) Following consideration of a report by the Local Government Commission with respect to the boundary of a local authority the Minister may by order alter the boundary of the relevant county, city or town.

(2) An order under subsection (1) may provide for the alteration of the boundary (whether by enlargement or reduction) otherwise than in accordance with the recommendations in the report but, where that alteration differs in a material respect from that recommended, the order shall set out the reasons for such variation.

(3) Where it is proposed to make an order under this section in relation to the boundary of a county or city—

(a) a draft of the order shall be laid before each House of the Oireachtas, and

(b) the order shall not be made until a resolution approving of the draft has been passed by each House.

(4) Where a report of the Local Government Commission makes recommendations under section 60 (7), the Minister may by direction in writing require the local authorities the subject of the report to take such steps to implement those recommendations—

(a) in a manner and within such period, and

(b) subject to such variation,

as may be specified in the direction.

(5) Each local authority shall comply with a direction to it under subsection (4).

Provisions consequential on boundary alteration.

62.—(1) In this section and in Schedule 11

“authority concerned” means a local authority whose boundary is affected by a primary order;

“primary order” means an order under section 61 (1);

“relevant area” means the portion of the administrative area of one local authority, or any part of that portion, which by virtue of a primary order becomes part of the administrative area of another local authority;

“supplementary order” means an order made under subsection (2).

(2) (a) The Minister or any other Minister of the Government, with the consent of the Minister, may by order make such provision as he or she considers necessary or expedient in relation to any matter arising from, in consequence of, or otherwise related to, the boundary alteration effected by a primary order.

(b) Without prejudice to the generality of paragraph (a), a supplementary order may make provision for all or any of the matters set out in Schedule 11.

(3) A supplementary order made by a Minister of the Government, other than the Minister, may only make provision with respect to matters in relation to which functions stand conferred on that Minister of the Government.

(4) A supplementary order made by the Minister may be made as one with a primary order.

(5) If a supplementary order so provides, a supplementary order may have retrospective effect with effect from the date of coming into force of the appropriate primary order.

(6) Where a boundary alteration is effected under this Part in respect of a town whose boundary was altered by regulations under section 17 of the Local Government Act, 1994 , any alterations made under that section shall cease to have effect in respect of the town or of any county boundary concerned.

(7) Where a boundary alteration is effected by a primary order, any reference in any enactment (including any reference read in accordance with section 3 and Schedule 2) to a county, city or town, whether to such areas generally or to any particular such area, shall, subject to any provision to the contrary in a supplementary order and unless the context otherwise requires, be read as a reference to the area of such county, city or town as so altered.

PART 9

Functions of Local Authorities

Chapter 1

General Functions of Local Authorities

Statement of local authority functions.

63.—(1) The functions of a local authority are—

(a) to provide a forum for the democratic representation of the local community, in accordance with section 64 , and to provide civic leadership for that community,

(b) to carry out such functions as may at any material time stand conferred on the relevant authority by or under any enactment (including this Act and any other enactment whether enacted before or after this Act),

(c) to carry out any ancillary functions under section 65 , and

(d) to take such action as it considers necessary or desirable to promote the community interest in accordance with section 66 .

(2) (a) Without prejudice to the scope of subsection (1)(b) and for ease of reference only, there is set out—

(i) in Part 1 of Schedule 12, certain Acts of the Oireachtas, the responsibility for which is primarily that of the Minister, which confer functions on local authorities or on classes of local authorities, and

(ii) in Part 2 of Schedule 12, certain Acts of the Oireachtas, the responsibility for which is primarily that of a Minister of the Government other than the Minister, which confer functions on local authorities or on classes of local authorities.

(b) Paragraph (a) shall not be read as setting out all relevant Acts which confer functions on local authorities or on classes of local authorities.

(3) Subject to law, a local authority is independent in the performance of its functions.

(4) Subject to law, the functions of a local authority shall be performed for or on behalf of the local authority and in its name by the elected council or the manager as may be appropriate in accordance with Part 14.

Representational functions of local authorities.

64.—(1) As a forum for the democratic representation of the local community a local authority may represent the interests of such community in such manner as it thinks appropriate.

(2) Without prejudice to the generality of subsection (1), a local authority may for the purposes of giving effect to that subsection—

(a) ascertain and communicate to other local authorities and public authorities the views of the local community in relation to matters as respects which those other authorities perform functions and which affect the interests of the administrative area of the authority and the local community,

(b) promote, organise or assist the carrying out of research, surveys (including public opinion surveys) or studies with respect to the local community or its administrative area,

(c) facilitate and promote interest and involvement in local government affairs generally,

(d) promote interest among young people in democracy and local government and in community and civic affairs generally,

(e) promote the use of the Irish language and support Gaeltacht communities.

(3) The making of a decision by a local authority in relation to the representation of the views of the local community under this section is a reserved function.

Ancillary functions of local authorities.

65.—(1) A local authority may do anything ancillary, supplementary or incidental to or consequential on or necessary to give full effect to, or which will facilitate or is conducive to the performance of, a function conferred on it by this or any other enactment or which can advantageously be performed by the authority in conjunction with the performance of such a function.

(2) The reference in subsection (1) to a function conferred on a local authority shall be read as including—

(a) all such functions as may at any material time stand conferred on the local authority by or under any enactment (including this Act and any other enactment whether enacted before or after this Act),

(b) the provision of offices, equipment or the doing of anything else which is necessary for or related to the general operation, organisation or administration of the authority.

(3) Every enactment relating to a function of a local authority shall be read and have effect in accordance with this section.

Promotion of interests of local community.

66.—(1) In this section “assistance in money or in kind” includes—

(a) grants, loans, guarantees or other financial aid,

(b) land and structures of any kind and related services, facilities or equipment,

(c) plant, machinery or equipment or the carrying out of works,

(d) the services of staff of the local authority concerned,

(e) financial aid in relation to the employment of staff, and

(f) professional or technical assistance.

(2) A decision by a local authority under this section to provide assistance in money or in kind to which paragraph (a), (b) or (e) of subsection (1) applies is a reserved function.

(3) (a) Subject to this section, a local authority may take such measures, engage in such activities or do such things in accordance with law (including the incurring of expenditure) as it considers necessary or desirable to promote the interests of the local community.

(b) For the purposes of this section a measure, activity or thing is deemed to promote the interests of the local community if it promotes, directly or indirectly, social inclusion or the social, economic, environmental, recreational, cultural, community or general development of the administrative area (or any part of it) of the local authority concerned or of the local community (or any group consisting of members of it).

(c) Nothing in subsection (4) or section 67 shall be read as restricting the generality or meaning of this subsection.

(4) Without prejudice to the generality of subsection (3), a local authority may for the purposes of this section—

(a) carry out and maintain works of any kind,

(b) provide, maintain, manage, preserve or restore land, structures of any kind or facilities,

(c) fit out, furnish or equip any building, structure or facility for particular purposes,

(d) provide utilities, equipment or materials for particular purposes,

(e) provide any service or other thing or engage in any activity that, in the opinion of the authority, is likely to benefit the local community,

(f) upon and subject to such terms and conditions as the authority considers appropriate, provide assistance in money or in kind (including the provision of prizes and other incentives) in respect of the organisation or promotion of competitions, seminars, exhibitions, displays, festivals or other events, or organise or promote such events,

(g) upon and subject to such terms and conditions as the authority considers appropriate, provide assistance in money or in kind to persons engaging in any activity that, in the opinion of the authority, benefits the local community,

(h) take such measures in relation to the matters mentioned in section 67 as it considers necessary or desirable,

(i) enter into such contracts and make such other arrangements (including the incorporation of one or more than one company) as the authority considers necessary or expedient either alone or jointly with any other local authority or public authority or any other person.

(5) A local authority shall not, by virtue of this section, perform any function (including the incurring of expenditure or any liability, whether contractual or otherwise) which is conferred on the authority by any other provision of this Act (other than section 67 ) or of any other enactment.

(6) A local authority shall not, by virtue of this section, undertake or provide assistance in money or in kind for the undertaking of any activity that would—

(a) prejudice or unnecessarily duplicate activity arising from the performance of a statutory function by any person in the administrative area of the authority, or

(b) having regard to the activities or proposed activities of that person in relation to the area, involve wasteful or unnecessary expenditure by the local authority.

(7) The Minister may, with the consent of the Minister for Finance, prescribe by regulations matters in respect of which a local authority is not to exercise the functions conferred by this section or in respect of which such exercise is subject to terms or conditions set out in the regulations.

(8) Expenditure (including the incurring of any liability whether contractual or otherwise) by a local authority in respect of the performance of its functions under this section (whether in respect of a particular activity or otherwise or in respect of a particular period or otherwise) shall not exceed such amount as may be prescribed by regulations made by the Minister.

(9) There shall be recorded in the annual report of a local authority for every year expenditure and other particulars in relation to the performance of its functions under this section.

(10) A local authority may make such charges for the use of, admission to or otherwise in relation to amenities, facilities, services or any other thing provided under this section (including matters mentioned in section 67 ) as it considers appropriate.

Amenity, recreation and other functions.

67.—(1) In accordance with and subject to section 66 , a local authority may take such measures, engage in such activities or do such things (including the incurring of expenditure) as it considers necessary or desirable to promote the interests of the local community in relation to the matters indicated in subsection (2).

(2) (a) The matters referred to in subsection (1) are—

(i) general recreational and leisure activities,

(ii) sports, games and similar activities,

(iii) artistic, linguistic and cultural activities,

(iv) civic improvements,

(v) general environmental and heritage protection and improvement,

(vi) allotments, fairs and markets, and related amenities, facilities and services,

(vii) the public use of amenities (both natural and made or altered by human intervention), and

(viii) the promotion of public safety.

(b) Without prejudice to the generality of paragraph (a), the matters referred to in subsection (1) shall also include the matters set out in the first column of Schedule 13 as expanded upon in the second column of that Schedule.

(3) This section also applies to any amenity, facility, service, allotment or any other thing referred to in section 31(4) of the Local Government Act, 1994 .

(4) Nothing in this section shall be read as limiting the operation of section 66 .

Irish language and local authorities.

68.—(1) A local authority may, in performing its functions, take such steps as it considers appropriate to encourage the use of the Irish language.

(2) (a) The Minister shall in accordance with this section issue, or arrange for the issue, to local authorities of guidelines, codes of practice or other guidance as regards the use of the Irish language in local government either generally or in respect of aspects of local authority functions.

(b) Without prejudice to the generality of paragraph (a), such guidance may deal with the use of the Irish language by local authorities in relation to—

(i) correspondence with members of the public, including written, oral, telephone and electronic communications;

(ii) stationery, advertisements, notices or other official documents;

(iii) the provision of services in the Gaeltacht;

(iv) the provision of, or access to, suitable training for employees;

(v) the promotion generally of the Irish language.

(3) A local authority shall have regard to such guidance in the performance of its functions.

(4) (a) For the purposes of this section the Minister may from time to time appoint an advisory group to be known by such name as may be designated by him or her.

(b) An advisory group appointed under this section shall include—

(i) at least one person who is a member of a local authority;

(ii) at least one person who is a manager or other employee of a local authority;

(iii) at least one person who is an officer of the Minister; and

(iv) at least 2 persons from organisations concerned with the promotion of the Irish language.

Local authorities to have regard to certain matters in performing functions, etc.

69.—(1) Subject to subsection (2), a local authority, in performing the functions conferred on it by or under this or any other enactment, shall have regard to—

(a) the resources, wherever originating, that are available or likely to be available to it for the purpose of such performance and the need to secure the most beneficial, effective and efficient use of such resources,

(b) the need to maintain adequately those services provided by it which it considers to be essential and, in so far as practicable, to ensure that a reasonable balance is achieved, taking account of all relevant factors, between its functional programmes,

(c) the need for co-operation with, and the co-ordination of its activities with those of other local authorities, public authorities and bodies whose money is provided (directly or indirectly) either wholly or partly by a Minister of the Government the performance of whose functions affect or may affect the performance of those of the authority so as to ensure efficiency and economy in the performance of its functions,

(d) the need for consultation with other local authorities, public authorities and bodies referred to in paragraph (c) in appropriate cases,

(e) policies and objectives of the Government or any Minister of the Government in so far as they may affect or relate to its functions,

(f) the need for a high standard of environmental and heritage protection and the need to promote sustainable development, and

(g) the need to promote social inclusion.

(2) A local authority shall perform those functions which it is required by law to perform and this section shall not be read as affecting any such requirement.

(3) Every enactment relating to a function of a local authority shall be read and have effect subject to this section.

(4) A local authority shall not by virtue of sections 63 to 67 perform any function—

(a) which it is prohibited from enjoying or performing by this or any other enactment, or

(b) without being subject to or complying with any conditions or restrictions to which, by virtue of this or any other enactment, the performance of the function is subject.

Exercise of certain functions.

70.—The functions of a local authority under sections 64 to 67 may be performed by any local authority in respect of its administrative area and may in respect of a town be exercised separately by the town council or county council concerned or jointly by both.

Objective of unified service to the public.

71.—(1) Without prejudice to sections 69 and 70, this section applies in relation to a county council and each town council situated in the county concerned, both of which are collectively referred to in this section as the “relevant local authorities”.

(2) The relevant local authorities shall take such steps as may be practicable—

(a) for the purpose of promoting the objective that the public, in their dealings with relevant local authorities, have a unified local government service provided to them, and

(b) to improve customer service to the public generally.

(3) For the purposes of subsection (2), relevant local authorities shall endeavour to seek the proper integration and co-ordination of their organisational arrangements, systems and procedures, including the provision of shared office accommodation and shared locations for public contact with them including electronic locations.

(4) It is the duty of the relevant local authorities to co-operate for the purpose of ensuring that the services for which they are responsible are organised and delivered so as to maximise their effectiveness and efficiency and to promote the objectives to which subsections (2) and (3) relate.

Transfer of certain functions to local authorities.

72.—(1) (a) The Government may by provisional order transfer a function of a Minister of the Government (other than a function that is required by the Constitution to be performed by a Minister of the Government) that, in the opinion of the Government, could be performed effectively by local authorities of a class or classes specified in the provisional order and is a function relating to the provision of a public service in the functional areas of local authorities of that class or those classes to local authorities of that class or those classes.

(b) The Government may by provisional order amend or revoke a provisional order under this subsection (including a provisional order under this paragraph).

(c) If a provision of a provisional order under this subsection that transfers a function is revoked, subsequent to its confirmation in accordance with paragraph (d), the function shall thereupon become and be vested in the Minister of the Government from whom it was transferred by the provisional order.

(d) A provisional order under this subsection shall not have effect unless and until it is confirmed by an Act of the Oireachtas.

(2) (a) The Minister may by order transfer a function of local authorities of a class or classes specified in the order that, in the opinion of the Minister, could be performed more effectively by local authorities of another class or classes so specified to local authorities of that other class or those other classes.

(b) The Minister may by order amend or revoke an order under this subsection (including an order under this paragraph).

(c) Where an order under this subsection would relate to a function as respects the performance of which a function stands conferred on any Minister of the Government other than the Minister, the order shall not be made without the prior consent of that Minister of the Government.

(d) If a provision of an order under this subsection that transfers a function is revoked, the function thereupon becomes and is vested in the local authorities from which it was transferred by the order.

(3) (a) A provisional order under subsection (1) or an order under subsection (2) may contain such ancillary, subsidiary and incidental provisions as the Government or the Minister, as appropriate, may determine.

(b) Without prejudice to the generality of paragraph (a), a provisional order under subsection (1) or an order under subsection (2) may—

(i) specify terms, conditions and restrictions upon and subject to which a function transferred by the provisional order or order (in this paragraph referred to as a “function concerned”) is to be performed by the local authorities to which the function is transferred (in this paragraph referred to as the “local authorities concerned”),

(ii) provide for the transfer of assets and liabilities associated with a function concerned from the person or persons concerned to the local authorities concerned,

(iii) provide for the use by the local authorities concerned of the services of staff of the person or persons concerned,

(iv) provide for such financial arrangements and adjustments between the person or persons concerned and the local authorities concerned as are considered proper by the Government or the Minister, as appropriate,

(v) provide for any necessary application, adaptation or modification of an enactment,

(vi) provide for such other matters as are considered by the Government or the Minister, as appropriate, to be necessary to enable the transfer of a function concerned to which the order relates to have full effect and to enable such function to be performed by the local authorities concerned.

Saver (functional area).

73.—Subject to section 72 and Chapter 5 of this Part, nothing in this Act affects the definition in any other enactment (however expressed or implied) of the functional area of a local authority for the purposes of a function conferred by that enactment.

Chapter 2

Ceremonial Functions

Civic honours.

74.—(1) (a) A local authority may confer a civic honour on a distinguished person in such manner as it may determine, including the admission of the person to the honorary freedom of its administrative area, and may establish and maintain a roll or other record in which to enter the names of persons so honoured.

(b) The Cathaoirleach may, without prejudice to paragraph (a), propose a person for a civic honour under this section.

(2) Any roll or other record of civic honour established and maintained by a local authority before the commencement of this section shall continue as if established and maintained under this section.

(3) A decision of a local authority to confer a civic honour on a person is a reserved function.

(4) The repeal by this Act of section 48(3) of the Local Government Act, 1991 , shall not have effect as respects any person to whom that section applies.

Twinning of local authority areas.

75.—(1) A local authority may enter into arrangements for the twinning of its administrative area or a part of it or establish other similar links with any other area, whether within or outside the State.

(2) The decision to enter into an arrangement under subsection (1) is a reserved function.

(3) A local authority shall not enter into an arrangement under subsection (1) unless, having had regard to the following matters, it is satisfied that the arrangement is justified:

(a) the benefits likely to accrue to its administrative area and the local community,

(b) the social, cultural and general interests of its administrative area and the local community, and

(c) the total cost involved.

(4) The Minister may issue directions to local authorities or specified classes of local authorities for the purposes of this section.

(5) There shall be recorded in the annual report of a local authority for every year expenditure and other particulars in relation to the performance of its functions under this section.

Entertainment and associated expenses of local authorities.

76.—(1) A local authority may incur reasonable expenditure for or in connection with the provision of receptions and entertainment for, and the making of presentations—

(a) to distinguished persons, and

(b) in connection with the holding of special events relevant to its functions.

(2) A decision to incur expenditure under subsection (1) is a reserved function.

(3) There shall be recorded in the annual report of a local authority for every year expenditure and other particulars in relation to the performance of its functions under this section.

Chapter 3

Library and Archival Functions

Library authorities.

77.—(1) Each of the following is a library authority:

(a) a county council,

(b) a city council,

(c) a joint library committee standing established at the commencement of this provision and carrying out the functions of a library authority:

and references to “library authority” shall be read accordingly.

(2) (a) A joint library committee referred to in subsection (1)(c) continues to stand established for the purposes of carrying out the functions of a library authority under this Chapter.

(b) The Minister may make regulations under this subsection for the purposes of the membership and continued operation of a joint library committee referred to in subsection (1)(c) as if it was a joint committee to which section 52 (2)(b) applies and such regulations may for such purposes include provisions corresponding to paragraphs (a) to (e) of section 52 (5).

Functions of library authorities.

78.—(1) A library authority may take such measures, engage in such activities or do such things in accordance with law (including the incurring of expenditure) for the provision of library services as it considers necessary or desirable.

(2) A library authority may, in particular, arrange for the provision of the following services:

(a) premises and facilities (including mobile facilities) for the borrowing of and reference to books and other printed matter, tapes and discs (being audio, video or both), slides, and such other material, including material available by means of the use of computers and information technologies, as it considers appropriate;

(b) activities and events of artistic, linguistic, educational, cultural, recreational, community or similar interest;

(c) such other information services, including services available by means of the use of computers and information technologies, as can in its opinion be supplied in conjunction with its functions as a library authority.

(3) A library authority is not, by virtue of subsection (1) or (2), to undertake any activity which in its opinion would unnecessarily duplicate activity arising from the performance of a statutory function by any other public authority or person.

(4) A library authority may make such arrangements as it considers desirable for the provision of library services to any other library authority, public authority or other body (including a school) or by any such body to that library authority.

(5) A library authority shall from time to time, or if requested by the Minister, prepare and adopt a programme for the operation and development of its library service (in this section referred to as the “library development programme”).

(6) Every library development programme prepared by a library authority under subsection (5) shall include—

(a) an outline of the existing library services,

(b) the development objectives and priorities for the library service,

(c) the measures taken or proposed to be taken to secure those development objectives,

(d) the financial or other implications of the library development programme,

(e) such other matters as are considered necessary by the library authority or as the Minister may specify in writing.

(7) The adoption of a library development programme is a reserved function.

An Chomhairle Leabharlanna.

79.—(1) In this section “Act of 1947” means the Public Libraries Act, 1947 , which was repealed by the Local Government Act, 1994 .

(2) The body known as An Chomhairle Leabharlanna (in this section referred to as the “Council”) standing established on the commencement of this section shall continue to stand established and shall continue to be a body corporate with perpetual succession and a seal, and power to sue and be sued in its corporate capacity and hold land.

(3) Judicial notice shall continue to be taken of the seal of the Council, and every document claiming to be sealed with the seal of the Council and to be authenticated in the manner prescribed by regulations made by the Minister shall, unless the contrary is proved, be deemed to have been duly and lawfully so sealed and be received in evidence without further proof and, in particular, without proof of any signature affixed to such document for the purpose of such authentication and without proof of the office or authority of the person whose signature such signature claims to be.

(4) A person who immediately before the commencement of this section was either the chair (by whatever name called) or any other member of the Council continues to hold that office until the next appointment of members.

(5) The Council shall operate in accordance with this section and with the provisions of regulations made under subsection (7), without prejudice to the continued application of the Local Authorities (Officers and Employees) Act, 1926 , to an office under the Council in so far as it applies on the commencement of this section.

(6) The functions of the Council include—

(a) the provision of advice, assistance and services to library authorities in relation to the public library service,

(b) the making of such recommendations to and the provision of such services for the Minister in relation to the public library service as the Minister may request or as the Council sees fit,

(c) action to promote and facilitate library co-operation,

(d) the maintenance and operation of the central library established under section 2 of the Act of 1947,

(e) such other functions as are specified in regulations made under subsection (7).

(7) (a) The Minister may make regulations for the purposes of the continued establishment and operation of the Council.

(b) Without prejudice to the generality of paragraph (a), regulations for such purposes may contain provisions in relation to—

(i) the expenses, funding and functions of the Council,

(ii) any matter provided for in the Act of 1947 or any matter which may be included in an order under the Local Government Services (Corporate Bodies) Act, 1971 , or

(iii) such other provisions as the Minister may think proper for the purposes of this section.

(8) Regulations made under section 34 of the Local Government Act, 1994 , and in force at the commencement of this section continue in force and have effect as if made under subsection (7) and may be amended or revoked accordingly.

(9) The Minister may give to the Council, directions in writing on any matter relating to its functions or operation and the Council shall comply with any such directions.

Records and archives of local authorities.

80.—(1) In this section—

“local archives” includes—

(a) such records and documents (including copies) as are, at the commencement of this section, held by any local archives service operated by any local authority (whether alone or in co-operation with another person or body),

(b) archival material acquired by a local authority under subsection (3), and

(c) other local records which are more than 30 years old, except such records as are certified, in accordance with directions under subsection (4), to be unsuitable for classification as local archives;

“local records” includes books, maps, plans, drawings, papers, files, photographs, films, micro-films and other micrographic records, sound recordings, pictorial records, magnetic tapes, magnetic discs, optical or video discs, other machine-readable records, other documentary or processed material made or received, and held in the course of its business or as successor to any other body by a local authority and includes copies of any such records duly made, but does not include—

(a) grants, deeds or other documents of title relating to property for the time being vested in the local authority, and

(b) any part of the permanent collection of a library, museum or gallery.

(2) Subject to the other provisions of this section, it is a function of a local authority to make arrangements for the proper management, custody, care and conservation of local records and local archives and for inspection by the public of local archives.

(3) A local authority may acquire, by purchase, donation, bequest or loan, and undertake the care and conservation of, archival material of local interest which is in the possession of any other person or body (including another local authority).

(4) The Minister may, after consultation with the Director of the National Archives, give advice or directions to local authorities in relation to any matter relating to local records and local archives and, in particular and without prejudice to the foregoing, in relation to—

(a) the retention, management, preservation, restoration and reproduction of local records and local archives,

(b) the certification of local records to be unsuitable for classification as local archives, and the review of such certification at specified intervals,

(c) the availability of local archives for public inspection,

(d) the making and provision of copies and extracts from local archives,

(e) circumstances in which local archives, or particular classes of local archives, may be withheld from public inspection,

(f) the preparation of guides, lists, indexes and finding aids to local archives,

(g) the lending of local archives to appropriate institutions, bodies and societies, whether in the State or elsewhere, and

(h) the disposal of local records and local archives.

(5) Section 13 of the National Archives Act, 1986 , shall cease to have effect in relation to records or documents of a local authority.

(6) Without prejudice to subsection (4), the National Archives Advisory Council may advise the Minister on any matter affecting local archives and their use by the public.

(7) Nothing in this section affects any rights of a person claiming to be the owner of a document to recover the document.

(8) The making or supplying of reproductions by or under the direction of a local authority of archives which are held in accordance with this section and are open to public inspection shall not, subject to any terms or conditions under which archival material was acquired under subsection (3), infringe the copyright of such archives.

(9) A person shall not remove, conceal, damage or destroy archives held by a local authority in accordance with this section.

(10) A person who contravenes subsection (9) is guilty of an offence and is liable on summary conviction to a fine not exceeding £1,500.

(11) Summary proceedings for an offence under this section may be brought by the local authority concerned.

Chapter 4

Non-Public Roads — Local Improvement Schemes

Assistance towards non-public roads.

81.—(1) In this section—

“functional area” means a county inclusive of any town with a town council situated in the county;

“improvement” includes associated drainage works;

“non-public road” means a road which is not a public road within the meaning of the Roads Act, 1993 ;

“road” has the same meaning as in the Roads Act, 1993 ;

“road authority” means a county council.

(2) The Minister may make a grant to a road authority in relation to assistance by the authority towards the construction or improvement of non-public roads in its functional area.

(3) A road authority may provide assistance by way of the carrying out of works, a financial contribution or otherwise towards the construction or improvement of a non-public road which—

(a) provides access to parcels of land of which at least 2 are owned or occupied by different persons, or

(b) provides access for harvesting purposes (including turf or seaweed) for 2 or more persons, or

(c) shall in the opinion of the road authority be used by the public.

(4) Assistance by a road authority under this section shall be—

(a) conditional on a prior written agreement by the parties concerned with the road authority and a financial contribution by such parties, and

(b) subject to such other terms and conditions as the Minister may consider appropriate.

(5) The provision of assistance by a road authority under this section does not make the authority liable for the maintenance of the non-public road in question nor impose any other duties or liabilities on the authority in respect of such road.

(6) After consultation with the Minister and with the consent of the Minister for Finance, any other Minister of the Government may make a grant to a road authority in relation to the construction or improvement of non-public roads in accordance with a scheme made by him or her.

(7) Section 6(2) of the Local Government Act, 1998 , is hereby amended by the substitution of the following for paragraph (b):

“(b) the carrying out of works under section 81 of the Local Government Act, 2001, or”.

Chapter 5

Functions under Local Government (Sanitary Services) Acts, 1878 to 1995, etc.

Definitions (Chapter 5).

82.—In this Chapter—

“town sanitary authority” means a sanitary authority under the Local Government (Sanitary Services) Acts, 1878 to 1995, being an urban district council or a borough (other than a county borough) corporation and references to a “town sanitary district” shall be read as a reference to the relevant urban district or borough; but subject to section 3 ;

“water functions” means the functions of a town sanitary authority under—

(a) the Local Government (Sanitary Services) Acts, 1878 to 1995, and this Chapter, other than functions conferred on a town sanitary authority under—

(i) Parts IV to VI of the Local Government (Sanitary Services) Act, 1948 ,

(ii) the Local Government (Sanitary Services) (Joint Burial Boards) Act, 1952 ,

(iii) the Local Government (Sanitary Services) Act, 1964 , except section 4,

(iv) Part II of the Public Health Acts Amendment Act, 1907,

(v) sections 34 to 37 and Part IV of the Public Health Acts Amendment Act, 1890,

(vi) so much of the Public Health (Ireland) Act, 1878, and the Public Health (Ireland) Act, 1896, as do not relate to the functions of a sanitary authority in relation to sewerage and drainage or the supply of water,

(b) the Water Supplies Act, 1942 ,

(c) the Health (Fluoridation of Water Supplies) Act, 1960 ,

(d) the Local Government (Water Pollution) Acts, 1977 and 1990, and

(e) any enactment as may be specified in regulations under section 83 (7).

Functions under Local Government (Sanitary Services) Acts, 1878 to 1995, etc.

83.—(1) On the coming into operation of this section—

(a) the water functions of a town sanitary authority shall transfer to and be functions of the county council in whose administrative county the relevant town sanitary district was situated, and

(b) the county council concerned is the sanitary authority for the purposes of those functions,

and the county shall for those purposes comprise a single sanitary district and each town sanitary district existing before such day shall form part of that single district.

(2) (a) Notwithstanding the repeal of the Local Government (Amendment) (No. 2) Act, 1934 , by this Act and subject to paragraph (b), nothing in this section affects the division of the administrative County of Cork into 3 county health districts by order under the Local Government (Amendment) (No. 2) Act, 1934 , which shall each comprise a single sanitary district for the purposes of this section and each such district may be known as a “Division” or such other title as may be assigned by Cork County Council.

(b) Cork County Council may be resolution alter the boundaries of any such Division or terminate all such Divisions in consequence of which termination the County comprises of a single sanitary district for the purposes of this section.

(3) A reference in any enactment to a county health district shall, in so far as it relates or applies for the purposes of the water functions and subject to this section, be read as a reference to a sanitary district within the meaning of subsection (1).

(4) On the commencement of this provision, all property, real and personal (including all interests, rights and easements in, to, and out of property and choses-in-action) which immediately before such commencement was vested in a town sanitary authority and was used solely for the purposes of the water functions and all rights, powers, licences and privileges connected with such functions shall, unless the relevant county council and town sanitary authority otherwise agree, stand vested in the county council without any conveyance or assignment.

(5) A town sanitary authority may issue a certificate under the hand of its town clerk in respect of specified property certifying, as it thinks proper, that the property vested or did not vest under this section and the certificate is evidence of the facts stated in it unless the contrary is shown.

(6) A sanitary authority may make arrangements with any other local authority in relation to the discharge of its water functions.

(7) The Minister may be regulations make such provision as in his or her opinion may be necessary arising from or connected with the transfer of functions effected by this section and for that purpose may—

(a) specify functions under any enactment which shall be water functions for the purposes of this section,

(b) make any necessary adaptation or modification of the Local Government (Sanitary Services) Acts, 1878 to 1995, the Water Supplies Act, 1942 , the Local Government (Water Pollution) Acts, 1977 and 1990, or any other enactment for the purposes of this section,

(c) provide for financial adjustments between a county council and any other local authority affected by such transfer and for the method of determination of such adjustments,

(d) provide for the payment of money by or to a county council or by or to any other local authority affected by such transfer or for any other financial arrangements which may be necessary.

Saver (Chapter 5).

84.—Subject to this Act the functions vested in a town sanitary authority by the Local Government (Sanitary Services) Acts, 1878 to 1995, other than the water functions, shall continue to be so vested.

PART 10

Agreements and arrangements concerning functions

Agreements concerning functions.

85.—(1) Where in the opinion of a local authority any function performable by it should be performed, generally or in a particular case, by another local authority, and that other authority is able and willing so to perform the function, then the authorities may enter into an agreement that—

(a) the function shall be so performed on behalf of the first-mentioned authority by the other authority, and

(b) it becomes so performable by that other authority in accordance with the agreement.

(2) Where in the opinion of a body which is a public authority any function performable by it should be performed, generally or in a particular case, by a local authority, and that local authority is able and willing so to perform the function, then the body and the local authority may enter into an agreement that—

(a) the function shall be so performed on behalf of the body by the local authority, and

(b) it becomes so performable by that local authority in accordance with the agreement.

(3) Where—

(a) consequent on an agreement under this section, a function becomes performable by a local authority, and

(b) the body, being a local authority or other body as referred to in subsection (2), as the case may be, which is the other party to the agreement would, if it performed the function, be authorised by law to do any act or thing in relation to such performance,

then the local authority is authorised to do that act or thing in relation to the performance by it of the function as if it were that body.

(4) An agreement under this section may contain terms and conditions as to—

(a) the performance of the function by the local authority, to such extent and for such period as may be specified in the agreement,

(b) the making of payments or the transfer of financial responsibility, and

(c) for such other matters as may be considered necessary to give effect to the agreement,

and may provide for an area of charge other than the area of charge specified in section 10 of the Local Government Act, 1946 .

(5) The making of an agreement by a local authority under this section, in so far as it relates to it, is a reserved function.

(6) An agreement under this section may relate to all or part of the area of a local authority as may be specified in the agreement.

(7) This section is without prejudice to section 25 of the Health Act, 1970 , and an agreement shall not be made under this section in a case in which an arrangement could be made under the said section 25.

Joint discharge of functions and provision of services.

86.—(1) Two or more local authorities may make arrangements for the joint discharge of any of their functions.

(2) An arrangement under subsection (1) may relate to all or part of an area of a local authority.

(3) A local authority may, by agreement, provide staff or other services for or avail of such services of any person other than a local authority.

Direction to make agreements.

87.—(1) Whenever it appears to the Minister that an agreement under section 85 (1) should be made between local authorities for the purpose of any of their functions, he or she may direct them to enter into an agreement.

(2) A direction under subsection (1) shall only be made by the Minister after giving each local authority concerned an opportunity to make representations to him or her in writing and after considering any representations so made.

(3) The Minister may direct that any agreement entered into under this section contains such terms and conditions as he or she may specify and the authorities concerned shall comply with any direction given by the Minister.

(4) An agreement entered into under this section shall not be revoked except with the consent of the Minister.

Savers (Part 10).

88.—(1) Where on the commencement of this section an agreement under section 59 of the Local Government Act, 1955 , is in force, that agreement continues in force as if it were an agreement made under section 85 notwithstanding the repeal by this Act of section 59 of the Local Government Act, 1955 .

(2) Without prejudice to section 20 of the Interpretation Act, 1937 , references in section 10 of the Fire Services Act, 1981 , section 14 of the Roads Act, 1993 , section 2 of the Building Control Act, 1990 , and section 5 of the Local Government Act, 1998 , to section 59 of the Local Government Act, 1955 , shall be read as references to section 85 of this Act.

PART 11

Local Government Commission

Establishment of Local Government Commission.

89.—(1) The Minister shall by order establish in accordance with this Part a body to be known as the Local Government Commission (in this Part referred to as the “Commission”) to perform the functions assigned to it by this Act.

(2) The Commission and its members are independent in the performance of their functions.

(3) (a) The Minister may by regulations prescribe any matter of procedure as regards the appointment and operation of the Commission or the carrying out of its functions.

(b) Without prejudice to the generality of paragraph (a), regulations under that paragraph may provide for any of the following:

(i) the designation of organisations for the purposes of making nominations to which subparagraph (iii) relates in respect of section 91 (3)(a);

(ii) the designation of organisations for the purposes of making nominations to which subparagraph (iii) relates in respect of section 91 (3)(b);

(iii) the making of nominations by organisations to which subparagraphs (i) and (ii) relate, when so requested by the Minister within such period of time as is specified;

(iv) the making of an appointment to the Commission for the purposes of section 91 (3)(a) from among those persons duly nominated;

(v) the making of an appointment to the Commission for the purposes of section 91 (3)(b) from among persons duly nominated;

(vi) the conduct of an oral hearing held by the Commission under section 93 (6), the procedures at such hearing and the attendance by local authorities or other persons at such hearing.

Functions of Commission.

90.—(1) The Commission shall carry out the functions conferred on it by this Act in relation to—

(a) the alteration of local authority boundaries under Part 8,

(b) the alteration of local electoral areas and of the number of members assigned to those areas under section 23 ,

(c) the alteration of the number of members of a local authority under section 22 ,

(d) the establishment of a town council under section 185 ,

(e) an application by a town council under section 187 ,

(f) any matter arising on a request under subsection (2),

and shall prepare and furnish to the Minister a report in accordance with those provisions and this Part.

(2) The Minister may request in writing the Commission under this subsection to prepare a report with respect to—

(a) any matter relating to any aspect of local government specified by the Minister in such request, either generally or in relation to a specified local authority, or

(b) the boundary of any administrative or geographical district or other division used for any purpose of public administration connected with or related to local government or any such district or other division which it is proposed to establish.

(3) A report of the Commission to the Minister under subsection (1) shall—

(a) be in writing,

(b) include the recommendations of the Commission in relation to the matters which are the subject of the report, and

(c) include recommendations in relation to such ancillary or related matters (including financial matters) as the Commission may consider appropriate or as the Minister may specify in a request under subsection (4)(b).

(4) (a) In relation to any function referred to in subsection (1), the Minister may request the Commission to have regard to such considerations or matters in preparing its report as are specified in the request and the Commission shall comply with any such request.

(b) Where the Minister specifies in a request under this section, a report of the Commission shall include the recommendations of the Commission in relation to such ancillary or related matters (including financial matters) as may be specified in such request.

(5) (a) The Minister shall publish a report furnished to him or her by the Commission.

(b) The Minister shall have regard to such report in carrying out his or her functions under and in accordance with the provisions specified in subsection (1).

Members of Commission.

91.—(1) Subject to section 92 (9), the Commission consists of not more than 5 and not less than 3 members, one of whom shall be the chairperson of the Commission.

(2) The chairperson shall be appointed by the Minister.

(3) The members shall be appointed by the Minister and shall include—

(a) a person having knowledge or experience of local government affairs,

(b) a person having knowledge or experience in the field of business, commerce, administration or community development,

(c) an officer of the Minister.

(4) A member of the Commission shall not take part in the preparation of a report with respect to a local authority if he or she is an employee of that authority.

(5) To enable it to carry out its functions the members of the Commission shall be appointed in accordance with this section from time to time as required.

Eligibility and tenure of office of members, etc.

92.—(1) A person appointed to be a member of the Commission holds office as such member for such period (not exceeding 3 years) as may be specified by the Minister at the time of the appointment.

(2) The chairperson and any other member of the Commission may be paid out of moneys at the disposal of the Minister, such remuneration (if any) and allowances for expenses incurred by the member as the Minister, with the consent of the Minister for Finance, may determine.

(3) (a) A person is disqualified from becoming a member of the Commission if he or she is—

(i) a member of either House of the Oireachtas,

(ii) a member of the European Parliament, or

(iii) a member of a local authority.

(b) A person ceases to be a member of the Commission if he or she—

(i) is nominated as a member of Seanad Éireann, or

(ii) is elected as a member of either House of the Oireachtas or as a member of the European Parliament, or

(iii) is regarded under Part XIII of the Second Schedule to the European Parliament Elections Act, 1997 , as having been elected to the European Parliament to fill a vacancy, or

(iv) becomes a member of a local authority.

(4) The chairperson or any other member of the Commission may at any time resign from office by letter addressed to the Minister and the resignation takes effect from the date of receipt of the letter by the Minister.

(5) Where a casual vacancy occurs among the members of the Commission, the Minister may appoint a person under this subsection to fill such vacancy who shall hold office for the remainder of the term of office of the replaced member.

(6) The Minister may remove from office any member (including the chairperson) of the Commission if, in the opinion of the Minister, that person has become incapable through ill-health of effectively performing the duties of the office or has committed stated misbehaviour or that person's removal appears to the Minister to be necessary or desirable for the effective performance by the Commission of its functions.

(7) A person may be re-appointed to be a member of the Commission.

(8) Subject to this section and section 91 , the chairperson and other members of the Commission shall hold office on such terms and conditions as the Minister may determine.

(9) (a) Notwithstanding section 91 (1), the Minister may by order under this subsection increase the number of members of the Commission to not more than 7 members where in the opinion of the Minister it is necessary taking account of the volume of business coming before the Commission and the need to ensure the effective and efficient discharge by the Commission of its functions, but any such increase is for such temporary period as shall be specified in the order.

(b) A person appointed as an additional member of the Commission by virtue of an order under this subsection may be appointed under subsection (5) to fill a casual vacancy among the members of the Commission.

Meetings and procedures of Commission.

93.—(1) (a) The Commission shall hold such and so many meetings as may be necessary for the performance of its functions.

(b) The quorum for a meeting of the Commission is 3.

(2) The chairperson of a meeting of the Commission shall be—

(a) the chairperson of the Commission if present, or

(b) if and so long as the chairperson of the Commission is not present or if the office of chairperson is vacant, the members of the Commission who are present shall choose one of their number to be chairperson of the meeting.

(3) At a meeting of the Commission—

(a) each member of the Commission present has a vote, and

(b) every question at a meeting of the Commission shall be determined by a majority of the votes of the members present and voting on the question and, in the case of an equal division of votes, the chairperson of the meeting has a second or casting vote.

(4) Subject to subsection (1)(b), the Commission may act notwithstanding one or more vacancies in its membership.

(5) Subject to this Act, the Commission shall regulate, by standing orders or otherwise, the procedure and business of the Commission.

(6) (a) The Commission has an absolute discretion to hold an oral hearing in relation to any matter in respect of which functions are conferred on it by this Act and the hearing may be conducted by one or more members of the Commission or by a person appointed by the Commission for that purpose.

(b) The member or members of the Commission or other person appointed to conduct an oral hearing under paragraph (a) shall make a report in writing on the hearing to the Commission and shall include in the report such recommendations as are considered appropriate with respect to the subject of the report.

(c) The Commission shall consider a report made to it under paragraph (b) before deciding on the recommendations that it will make in its report.

(d) An oral hearing may be conducted in Irish or in English or in both languages and the Commission shall take appropriate steps to encourage the use of the Irish language.

(7) Where the number of members of the Commission has been increased by order under section 92 (9), any function of the Commission may be exercised by a division of the Commission comprising of at least 3 of its members and meetings and decisions of any such division are, for all purposes, decisions of the Commission.

Services to Commission.

94.—(1) A local authority or a public authority may supply to the Commission, on such terms and conditions as may be agreed upon by the relevant authority and the Commission, any services, including services of staff, required by the Commission for the performance of any of its functions.

(2) (a) The Minister may supply to the Commission, on such terms or conditions as he or she may specify, any services, including services of staff, required by the Commission for the performance of any of its functions.

(b) To assist and advise the Commission in the performance of any of its functions, the Commission may request the Minister to arrange for the supply to it of the services of persons having expert knowledge likely to be of value to it in its work and the Minister shall consider any such request.

(3) The Director General of the Central Statistics Office and the Commissioner of Valuation shall, on a request being made, provide free of charge to the Commission such assistance as the Commission may reasonably require for the purpose of the performance of any of its functions.

Submissions to Commission.

95.—(1) The Commission shall as soon as practicable give public notice of its intention to prepare a report under a provision mentioned in section 90 (1).

(2) The public notice referred to in subsection (1), which shall be published in a newspaper circulating in the area to which the subject matter of the report relates, shall indicate that—

(a) any person may make a submission to the Commission in relation to the subject matter of the report to be prepared by the Commission in a manner and within the period as is specified in the notice, and

(b) submissions received by the Commission within the period specified in the notice referred to in paragraph (a) shall be made available for public inspection.

(3) The Commission shall consider any submission made to it in accordance with such notice or made by a local authority under this section or otherwise.

(4) The submissions received by the Commission under this section are open to public inspection at such time and place and under such conditions as may be specified by the Commission and the Commission shall permit a copy of such submission or of extracts from them to be taken on payment of a fee which shall not exceed the reasonable cost of copying the submissions.

(5) (a) A local authority shall comply with a request in writing from the Commission to furnish to the Commission such information and particulars as the Commission may reasonably require for the purposes of any of its functions.

(b) The information requested under paragraph (a) shall be supplied by the local authority to the Commission within such period as is specified in the request.

(6) Without the consent of the Commission, a person shall not disclose to any person any information obtained while serving as a member of the Commission or as a person whose services are made available to the Commission under section 94 , which relates to the business of the Commission or the performance of the functions of the Commission.

(7) A person who contravenes subsection (6) is guilty of an offence and is liable on summary conviction to a fine not exceeding £1,500.

(8) Summary proceedings for an offence under this section may be brought by the Minister.

PART 12

Financial Procedures and Audit

Chapter 1

Financial Procedures

Local financial year.

96.—In this Chapter “local financial year” means a calendar year or such other period as the Minister may by regulations prescribe.

The local fund.

97.—(1) Every local authority shall maintain a fund to be known as the local fund which consists of such accounts kept under section 107 as may be necessary.

(2) (a) A fund maintained immediately before the commencement of this provision by a county council, borough corporation, urban district council or commissioners of a town under section 7 or 15(1) of the Local Government Act, 1946 , or otherwise and a municipal fund maintained by a county borough corporation under any enactment relating to that corporation shall, notwithstanding the repeal of those sections or that enactment by this Act, continue to be maintained by those local authorities and each such fund shall be known as the local fund.

(b) A reference in any enactment to a county fund, municipal fund or any other fund, which was maintained immediately before the commencement of this provision, shall be read as a reference to a local fund.

(3) There shall be paid into the local fund all money received by or on behalf of a local authority, other than money received for the purposes of a community fund established under section 109 .

(4) Subject to section 99 , there shall be paid out of the local fund the expenses incurred by a local authority in the performance of its functions, other than expenses payable out of a community fund established under section 109 .

(5) A payment shall not be made out of the local fund unless it is authorised in accordance with section 99 or ordered by a court established under the Courts (Establishment and Constitution) Act, 1961 .

Banking arrangements.

98.—Subject to section 106 , a local authority or joint body may enter into such arrangements, including investment arrangements, with such credit institutions authorised to carry on banking business in the State or financial institutions guaranteed by the Minister for Finance, as it deems appropriate, for the prudent management of moneys received by it.

Authorisation of payments.

99.—(1) In this section “local authority” includes a joint body.

(2) Payments may be made out of the funds of a local authority on the authorisation of the manager or an employee nominated under subsection (3) and, in each such case, the payments shall be counter-authorised by an employee, other than the manager or first-mentioned employee, nominated under subsection (3).

(3) The manager may for the purposes of subsection (2) by order nominate an employee or employees of a local authority for which the manager is responsible.

County council expenditure: town services.

100.—(1) Where a county council provides a service or carries out a function in or in relation to a town with a town council which is a rating authority within the administrative area of the county council, it shall levy a charge (in this section referred to as a “county charge”) on that town council for providing such service or carrying out such function (in this section referred to as the “provision of town services”).

(2) In determining a county charge, the county council shall prepare a statement of estimated costs expected to arise during the period ending on 31 December of the forthcoming local financial year in relation to the provision of town services.

(3) The statement of estimated costs shall allow for any income accruing to the county council in respect of the provision of town services and may include an adjustment to take account of—

(a) actual or estimated costs, and

(b) actual or estimated incomes,

as respects the provision of town services in the current local financial year or in the previous local financial year.

(4) A county council shall transmit an invoice for any county charge, accompanied by a statement of estimated costs to the relevant town council.

(5) A town council shall pay the county charge to the relevant county council within the period as may be prescribed by regulations made by the Minister or at such other time as may be agreed by the local authorities concerned.

(6) In determining costs under this section, a county council shall have regard to any guidelines or shall comply with any directions which the Minister may from time to time issue.

Expenses of certain town councils.

101.—(1) A town council which is not a rating authority shall be supplied with money required to meet its expenses by the county council in whose county the town is situated, on the basis of a demand prepared by the town council in a format prescribed by regulations made by the Minister.

(2) Expenses of the county council which are incurred in meeting a demand under subsection (1) are chargeable on the area of the town concerned and shall be known as town charges.

(3) Nothing in this section prevents a town council referred to in subsection (1) from raising money in accordance with section 109 , 110 or otherwise.

Local authority budget.

102.—(1) In this section “local authority” includes a joint body.

(2) In each local financial year, each local authority shall prepare a draft local authority budget setting out for the next local financial year—

(a) the expenditure estimated to be necessary to carry out its functions, and

(b) the income estimated to accrue to it.

(3) The draft local authority budget shall be prepared under the direction of the manager in the format prescribed by regulations made by the Minister showing the amounts necessary for the functional programmes of the authority.

(4) The manager shall, as provided for in section 133 (4)(a), consult the corporate policy group in the preparation of a draft local authority budget.

(5) Any reference in any enactment to an estimate or estimate of expenses of a local authority shall be read as a reference to a local authority budget prepared under this section and adopted under section 103 (7).

Local authority budget meeting.

103.—(1) In this section “local authority” includes a joint body.

(2) A draft local authority budget prepared in accordance with section 102 shall be considered by the local authority at a meeting (in this Act referred to as a “local authority budget meeting” or budget meeting)—

(a) at which the manager or an employee to whom subsection (3) relates is present,

(b) which is held during the period prescribed by regulations made by the Minister, and

(c) of which not less than 7 days' notice has been given to every member of the local authority.

(3) Where the manager is unable to be present at a local authority budget meeting or, where it would be inconsistent with the due performance of his or her functions in relation to the local authorities for which he or she is manager, to be present at such a meeting, such other employee as may stand nominated for that purpose by the manager shall attend the meeting instead.

(4) Not less than 7 days before the day on which a local authority budget meeting is to be held, the manager shall—

(a) place a copy of the draft local authority budget in the principal offices of the local authority,

(b) send a copy of the draft local authority budget, together with a report outlining the provisions of that draft, to every member of the local authority, and

(c) give public notice of the fact that the draft local authority budget has been prepared and that a copy of it has been placed in the principal offices of the local authority and indicate the place, date and time of the local authority budget meeting.

(5) A copy of a draft local authority budget—

(a) shall be made available at the principal offices of the local authority,

(b) may be inspected by any member of the public during normal opening hours, and

(c) copies may be purchased at a price not exceeding the reasonable cost of reproduction.

(6) The members of a local authority may adjourn a local authority budget meeting from time to time but any such adjournment shall be to a day that is within the period of 21 days beginning on the day on which the local authority budget meeting first begins.

(7) At a local authority budget meeting the local authority—

(a) may by resolution amend the draft local authority budget,

(b) shall by resolution adopt the draft local authority budget with or without amendment, and—

(i) where it is a local authority which is a rating authority, shall, subject to section 10 of the Local Government (Financial Provisions) Act, 1978 , by resolution determine in accordance with the local authority budget as so adopted, the annual rate on valuation to be levied, or

(ii) where it is a town council which is not a rating authority or where it is a joint body, shall prepare and by resolution adopt, in accordance with the local authority budget as so adopted, the demand by a town council under section 101 or a demand by a joint body whereby the money to meet the expenses of the town council or joint body, in the forthcoming local financial year is to be obtained.

(8) A copy of a local authority budget as adopted under subsection (7)

(a) shall be made available at the principal offices of the local authority,

(b) may be inspected by any member of the public during normal opening hours, and

(c) may be purchased at a price not exceeding the reasonable cost of reproduction.

(9) Notwithstanding the other provisions of this section and section 102 , a local authority budget may be adopted and the annual rate on valuation determined in the local financial year to which that budget or that rate applies where this is in accordance with the period prescribed by regulations made by the Minister for holding the local authority budget meeting.

(10) Where a local authority budget has not been adopted in accordance with this Chapter by a local authority before the beginning of a particular local financial year, it is lawful for the local authority to use money or to incur liability in that local financial year for any particular purpose or functional programme in respect of which money was used or liability was incurred by the local authority in the immediately preceding local financial year.

(11) (a) The amount used or the liability incurred as a consequence of subsection (10) by the local authority shall not exceed one-third of the amount previously used, or of the cost of meeting the liability previously incurred by the local authority in the immediately preceding local financial year.

(b) The Minister may by order vary the fraction referred to in paragraph (a).

(12) (a) Any reference in any enactment to an estimates meeting of a local authority shall be read as a reference to a local authority budget meeting as provided for in this section.

(b) Any reference in any enactment to a rate in the pound or rates in the pound shall be read as a reference to an annual rate on valuation.

Limitation on additional expenditure.

104.—(1) In this section—

“additional expenditure” means the spending of money or the incurring of a liability not provided for in a local authority budget;

“local authority” includes a joint body.

(2) At any time after it has adopted a budget a local authority may, following a proposal under subsection (3) or otherwise, by resolution authorise the incurring of additional expenditure.

(3) Where, as respects any local financial year, the manager is of the opinion that the proper performance of the functions of the local authority concerned requires the incurring of additional expenditure, he or she shall submit to the local authority a proposal for authorisation to the incurring of such additional expenditure.

(4) (a) A local authority may by resolution adopt a scheme authorising the manager to incur additional expenditure without prior authorisation of the local authority under subsection (2); but no such expenditure shall cause the total expenditure provided for in the budget to be exceeded save in such circumstances and subject to such requirements as may be provided for in regulations under subsection (5).

(b) A local authority may, from time to time, by resolution amend a scheme under this subsection or make a new scheme.

(5) The Minister may make regulations for the purposes of subsection (4).

(6) Nothing in this section shall prevent a manager from incurring additional expenditure—

(a) where he or she is of the opinion that such additional expenditure is necessary to avert or minimise a threat to public health, public safety, property or the environment, or

(b) in respect of a particular service or function where additional funding which would substantially offset such additional expenditure is made available to the local authority by the Minister or any other public authority for that service or function.

(7) Where the manager has incurred additional expenditure under subsection (6), or to which a scheme under subsection (4) applies, he or she shall inform—

(a) without delay, the Cathaoirleach of the fact, and

(b) the members of the local authority of the fact at the next practicable meeting of the local authority following the incurring of additional expenditure,

giving details of the additional expenditure and its implications for the local authority budget.

Submission of financial statements and reports.

105.—(1) A local authority or a joint body, may by resolution require the preparation and submission to its members of statements of the financial position of the local authority or joint body, as the case may be.

(2) In the case of a county council or city council, its corporate policy group may, where a resolution has not been passed under subsection (1), require the preparation and submission to it of statements of the financial position of the county council or city council.

(3) A statement of financial position submitted as a consequence of either subsection (1) or (2) shall contain such detail and shall be prepared and submitted at such intervals as may be specified in—

(a) the resolution of the local authority or joint body, as appropriate, or

(b) the requirement of the corporate policy group.

Borrowing and lending of money.

106.—(1) (a) In this section—

“local authority” includes a joint body;

“appropriate Minister” means—

(i) if the relevant borrowing or lending is in respect of matters which relate to the responsibility or interest of only one Minister of the Government other than the Minister, that Minister of the Government,

(ii) if such matters relate to the responsibility or interest of 2 or more Ministers of the Government (none of whom is the Minister), such one of those Ministers of the Government as has the greater or greatest interest in the matters, and

(iii) in all other cases, the Minister.

(b) If in relation to paragraph (ii) of the definition of “appropriate Minister” there is any doubt as to which of 2 or more Ministers of the Government has the greater or greatest interest, the doubt shall be determined by the Minister and the decision of the Minister shall be final.

(2) Subject to subsections (3) and (8) and any regulations made under subsection (5), a local authority may borrow money in any manner which it considers suitable for the effective performance of its functions.

(3) (a) Borrowing by a local authority under this section shall only be with the sanction of the appropriate Minister.

(b) Paragraph (a) does not apply to borrowing which the appropriate Minister may exempt for the purposes of this subsection.

(4) Any application for the sanction of the appropriate Minister under subsection (3)(a) shall be in such format as may from time to time be specified by the appropriate Minister.

(5) The Minister may, after consultation with the Minister for Finance, make regulations in relation to borrowing by local authorities.

(6) (a) A local authority may lend money to another local authority on such terms as to repayment and other matters as it considers proper.

(b) Where a sum which consists of either—

(i) a portion of a loan advanced under this section by a county council to a town council that is not a rating authority but is situated within its county, or

(ii) interest on any such loan,

and is not included in the appropriate demand under section 101 , then the sum shall be deemed to have been included in the demand and section 101 (2) shall have effect accordingly.

(7) A decision to borrow or lend under this section is a reserved function.

(8) The appropriate Minister may, after consultation with the Minister for Finance, sanction borrowing by a local authority in a currency other than the currency of the State.

(9) Except in accordance with this section, a local authority shall not—

(a) borrow money, or

(b) lend money to another local authority.

Keeping of accounts.

107.—(1) Subject to subsection (2), every local authority or joint body shall each keep all proper and usual accounts of moneys received or spent by it, including an income and expenditure account and a balance sheet.

(2) Every local authority and joint body shall each establish and maintain financial systems, accounts, reporting and record keeping procedures, including the preparation of an annual financial statement, which are consistent with such accounting code of practice, or amendments to it, that the Minister may issue from time to time.

(3) Any accounting code of practice issued by the Minister which is current on the date of the commencement of this provision, shall be deemed to have issued in accordance with this section and be applicable to every local authority and, where appropriate, to every joint body.

Consideration of annual financial statement.

108.—(1) In this section, additional expenditure has the meaning given to it by section 104 (1).

(2) Every local authority or joint body shall prepare an annual financial statement in accordance with the accounting code of practice issued by the Minister under section 107 .

(3) As soon as practicable after the preparation of an annual financial statement, such statement, with a report on it by the manager, shall be sent to each member of the local authority or joint body, as the case may be.

(4) Without prejudice to the generality of subsection (3), a report under that subsection shall include details of additional expenditure incurred in the period to which the annual financial statement relates and of authorisations given under section 104 .

(5) The annual financial statement shall be considered at the next practicable meeting of the local authority or joint body concerned which is held not less than 7 days after the annual financial statement was sent under subsection (3).

(6) As soon as may be practicable after having been sent under subsection (3), the annual financial statement shall be transmitted to the Minister and the Director of Audit.

Community fund.

109.—(1) In this section “community initiative” means any project or programme which in the opinion of the local authority will benefit the local community and includes the provision or improvement of amenity, recreational, cultural or heritage facilities, the protection or enhancement of the environment and programmes to promote social inclusion and community development.

(2) A local authority may by resolution establish a fund (in this section referred to as a “community fund”) for the purposes of supporting community initiatives and may accept contributions to such fund by any voluntary, business or community group, other local authority or public authority or other person and may itself make contributions to such fund.

(3) A community fund shall be separate from the local fund.

(4) (a) The accounts of a community fund shall be accounted for separately and be part of the records and the accounts of the local authority or local authorities which established the fund.

(b) The accounts of a community fund shall contain separate records for contributions in respect of particular community initiatives as the local authority which established it may consider appropriate.

(5) A local authority may enter into an agreement with any person making contributions to the fund as regards the application of money towards a particular community initiative.

(6) A local authority may undertake itself or assist any other person in such fund-raising activities as it considers appropriate for the purposes of a community initiative.

(7) A community fund may be established jointly by resolution of 2 or more local authorities subject to such arrangements as may be agreed by the authorities concerned.

(8) The functions conferred on a local authority by this section or by section 110 shall—

(a) be subject to the exclusion of such matters, and

(b) be exercisable subject to such terms and conditions,

as the Minister may, with the consent of the Minister for Finance, prescribe by regulations.

Community initiative scheme.

110.—(1) In this section—

“community fund” has the meaning given in section 109 (2);

“community initiative” has the meaning given in section 109 (1);

“dwelling” includes a part of any premises let as a separate dwelling whether or not the person to whom it is let shares with any other person any accommodation, amenity or facility in connection with it or any other portion of the premises;

“occupier” means a person or persons who occupy the dwelling in question;

“scheme” means a scheme adopted by a local authority under this section and “draft scheme” shall be read accordingly.

(2) Where a local authority considers it appropriate it may, in accordance with this section, by resolution adopt a scheme for the making of an annual contribution by the occupier of each dwelling in the area to which the scheme applies towards particular community initiatives specified in the scheme.

(3) Annual contributions received in accordance with a scheme shall be paid into the community fund.

(4) A community initiative to which a scheme applies may be undertaken by a local community or other group, the local authority, any other person or jointly by any of them.

(5) A scheme shall—

(a) describe the particular initiative or initiatives to which annual contributions under the scheme are to be applied,

(b) provide for a separate record to be kept in the community fund as regards such annual contributions,

(c) specify the amount of the annual contribution to be paid by the occupier and different amounts may be specified for different categories of person as may be specified in the scheme,

(d) provide for the waiver or the remission in whole or in part of the annual contribution in the case of personal hardship, ability to pay or other specified circumstances,

(e) specify the period of years for which the scheme is to operate,

(f) specify the period within which an annual contribution is to be paid,

(g) specify the area to which the scheme applies, and

(h) provide for all such other matters as the local authority may consider necessary to ensure the satisfactory operation of the scheme.

(6) (a) Before adopting a scheme, a local authority shall publish a notice in at least one newspaper circulating in its administrative area indicating that a draft scheme has been prepared.

(b) The notice shall—

(i) describe the community initiative or initiatives and the area in respect of which the scheme would operate,

(ii) state the amount of the proposed annual contribution,

(iii) indicate that a copy of the draft scheme may be inspected at the principal offices of the local authority or at such other locations as may be specified and may be obtained free of charge at such offices or locations, and

(iv) indicate that any person may make submissions or observations in writing to the local authority in relation to the draft scheme on or before a date specified in the notice, and the date shall not be less than one month after the notice is first so published.

(7) (a) A local authority may by resolution decide to hold a plebiscite regarding a draft scheme in that part of its area in respect of which it is proposed to make a scheme.

(b) The Minister may make regulations governing the conduct of plebiscites and matters relating to plebiscites.

(8) A local authority may by resolution, for which at least one-half of the total number of members of the authority vote in favour, adopt a scheme with or without amendment at any time after—

(a) the date specified for the purposes of subsection (6)(b)(iv),

(b) the consideration of any submissions or observations made to it under subsection (6)(b)(iv), and

(c) the consideration of the outcome of any plebiscite held under subsection (7).

(9) (a) Where a scheme has been adopted, the local authority shall in each year in which the scheme operates send to the occupier a notification to pay the annual contribution.

(b) The occupier shall pay to the local authority the annual contribution specified in the notification within the period specified.

(10) Where an annual contribution to be made by the occupier in accordance with a notification to pay has not been paid within the period specified for payment in the notification the local authority may recover such annual contribution from the occupier as a simple contract debt in any court of competent jurisdiction.

(11) A scheme may be made jointly by 2 or more local authorities in respect of an area specified in the scheme which includes part or all of the administrative area of each of the local authorities concerned but a scheme shall not be made in respect of any area which comprises an entire county or city.

(12) A notification to pay shall indicate—

(a) the amount of the annual contribution,

(b) the period within which it is to be paid, and

(c) the community initiative or initiative to which it relates.

(13) A notification to pay may be addressed to any occupier of the dwelling by name, but where the name of the occupier cannot be ascertained by reasonable inquiry, the notification may be addressed to “the occupier” without naming the occupier.

(14) Only one contribution is payable in respect of any dwelling in respect of a particular year.

Regulations (Chapter 1).

111.—(1) The Minister may make regulations for any or all of the following matters—

(a) the form of accounts to be kept by local authorities or joint bodies, including the functional programmes to be shown in such accounts and the matters in respect of which separate amounts are to be shown,

(b) the format of a local authority budget or a draft local authority budget,

(c) the periods for the holding of local authority budget meetings,

(d) the form and manner of any statement of estimated costs of a county council for town services, and the period for transmitting such statement to the town councils concerned,

(e) the form and manner of a demand under section 101 of a town council which is not a rating authority and the period for serving that demand to meet those expenses on the relevant county council,

(f) the serving of a demand by a joint body in respect of its expenses on the relevant county council or city council and the format and period of serving that demand,

(g) specifying the periods within which payments made to persons authorised to receive money on behalf of a local authority shall be paid to the authority,

(h) the financial and administrative procedures to apply in relation to gifts received by a local authority,

(i) such other matters as the Minister may consider appropriate in relation to financial management and procedures.

(2) Regulations under this section may make provision in respect of any matter by reference to an accounting code of practice issued under section 107 .

Obligations in case of proposal involving illegal payment, deficiency or loss.

112.—(1) Where a proposal is made at a meeting of a local authority or a joint body to do or effect any act, matter or thing—

(a) which constitutes a reserved function or is mentioned in a resolution under section 140 , and

(b) in consequence of which an illegal payment is to be made out of the funds of the local authority or joint body, or a deficiency or loss is likely to result in or to such funds,

the manager (or, in his or her absence, such other employee as may be nominated by the manager) shall object and state the grounds of his or her objection, and, if a decision is taken on the proposal, the names of the members present and voting for and against the decision and abstaining from voting on the decision shall be recorded in the minutes of the meeting.

(2) Where, in accordance with subsection (1), the names of the persons voting for a decision to do or effect any act, matter or thing are recorded in the minutes of the meeting of a local authority or joint body, those persons shall be surcharged on any surcharge or charged on any charge that may subsequently be made as a result of the decision as if they had made or authorised the making of the payment or caused the loss or deficiency, and no other person is to be surcharged or charged.

Savers.

113.—(1) Nothing in this Act (including the repeal of any enactment) affects the making, levying, collection or recovery of rates or the liability of a person to pay rates.

(2) Notwithstanding the repeal of the City and County Management (Amendment) Act, 1955 , by this Act, section 10A of that Act (as inserted by section 44 of the Local Government Act, 1994 ) shall continue to apply and have effect and for that purpose—

(a) the reference in subsection (1) of that section to “section 10(4) of this Act” and in subsection (3) of that section to “subsection (4) of section 10” shall both be read as references to section 103 (7) of this Act, and

(b) the references in subsections (7) and (8) to “Part IV of the Local Government Act, 1941 ” shall each be read as a reference to part 21 of this Act.

Chapter 2

Audit

Interpretation (Chapter 2).

114.—(1) In this Chapter—

“audit committee” has the meaning given in section 122 ;

“audited financial statement” has the meaning given in section 120 (1);

“audit opinion” has the meaning given in section 120 (1);

“auditor's report” has the meaning given in section 120 (1);

“auditor's special report” has the meaning given in section 120 (2);

“local authority or other body” means a local authority, a joint body and any other body standing prescribed by regulations made by the Minister under section 115 ;

“local government auditor” shall be read in accordance with section 116 (1).

(2) Any reference to the Minister in this Chapter shall, in a case where the reference applies to a body prescribed by regulations under section 115 for which another Minister of the Government is responsible, be read as a reference to that Minister.

Application (Chapter 2).

115.—(1) This Chapter applies to every local authority and every joint body and their accounts shall be audited by a local government auditor in accordance with the provisions of this Act.

(2) (a) The Minister may by regulations prescribe a body to be a body to which this Chapter also applies.

(b) The Minister shall not make regulations under this subsection in respect of a body for which another Minister of the Government is directly or indirectly responsible unless that Minister consents to those regulations being made.

Local Government Audit Service.

116.—(1) There is established on the commencement of this section a service to be known as the Local Government Audit Service and the Minister may appoint to such service such and so many suitably qualified persons, to be known as local government auditors, to carry out or assist in the carrying out of audits of the accounts of local authorities and other bodies.

(2) Local government auditors shall be independent in the exercise of their professional functions.

(3) The Minister may appoint a person (in this Act referred to as the “Director of Audit”) to the Local Government Audit Service to carry out the functions set out in subsection (4).

(4) The functions of the Director of Audit are—

(a) to organise, direct and allocate resources within the Local Government Audit Service,

(b) to assign audits of particular local authorities or other bodies to particular local government auditors,

(c) to provide such advice and assistance as the Minister may from time to time require for the purposes of section 117 (1),

(d) to arrange for auditors to certify claims or returns in accordance with section 126 ,

(e) to direct the Local Government (Value for Money) Unit established by section 14 of the Local Government (Financial Provisions) Act, 1997 , and to ensure that the work of the unit is incorporated into local government audit practice,

(f) to report from time to time to the Minister on matters set out in paragraphs (a) to (e) and generally on the performance of the Local Government Audit Service,

(g) to bring proceedings under section 119 (4), and

(h) to carry out such other functions as the Minister may from time to time direct.

(5) By virtue of this subsection the Local Government (Value for Money) Unit referred to in subsection (4)(e) forms part of the Local Government Audit Service.

(6) (a) A person who is a local government auditor immediately prior to the commencement of this section shall by virtue of this subsection on such commencement stand assigned to the Local Government Audit Service.

(b) Nothing in this subsection shall be read as prejudicing the position of a person referred to in paragraph (a) as a civil servant for the purposes of the Civil Service Regulation Act, 1956 .

Code of audit practice.

117.—(1) After consideration of the relevant professional auditing standards and following consultation with the Director of Audit, the Minister may issue and amend from time to time a code of audit practice in relation to the conduct of an audit and to such related matters as the Minister may consider appropriate.

(2) Notwithstanding the generality of subsection (1), the code may include provisions as regards the consideration of—

(a) the general financial standing of the audited body,

(b) the adequacy of the audited body's financial systems,

(c) the adequacy of the audited body's arrangements for preventing and detecting fraud and corruption,

(d) the adequacy of arrangements by a local authority or other body to secure economy and efficiency in the use of resources and of the systems employed by the local authority or other body concerned for the purposes of enabling it to evaluate the effectiveness of its operations.

(3) (a) In carrying out the audit of a local authority or other body, a local government auditor shall comply with the code of audit practice provided for in subsection (1).

(b) Nothing in this Chapter shall prejudice section 15 of the Local Government (Financial Provisions) Act, 1997 .

Audit procedure.

118.—(1) The Minister may make regulations setting out the procedures to be followed by a local authority or other body and by a local government auditor in relation to the audit of accounts of the local authority or other body.

(2) Without prejudice to the generality of subsection (1), the regulations may provide for any or all of the following—

(a) giving notice of the time and place for holding the audit;

(b) adjournment of the audit;

(c) public right of inspection of accounts;

(d) amendment or correction of errors in the annual financial statement;

(e) giving any member of the public a right to make an objection to the local government auditor concerning the accounts and the making of decisions on any such objections by the local government auditor;

(f) completion of the audit by the local government auditor;

(g) public notice of audited accounts;

(h) fees or a scale of fees for audit services.

(3) In the course of the audit of accounts of the local authority or other body, the local government auditor shall carry out such audit tests as he or she considers appropriate in order to be satisfied as to—

(a) whether the annual financial statement is prepared in accordance with section 107 or with the accounting requirements otherwise applicable to the body concerned,

(b) whether the annual financial statement presents fairly the financial position of the authority or other body and of its income and expenditure for the period in question,

(c) whether the transactions of the audited body conform with the statutory or other authorisation under which they purport to have been carried out.

Right of auditor to inspect documents, obtain information, etc.

119.—(1) For the purposes of this Chapter a local government auditor shall in the course of audit—

(a) be given such office accommodation or other facilities as he or she may reasonably require,

(b) be given access to and allowed to inspect all books, deeds, contracts, accounts, vouchers, receipts, maps, plans, documents, or other data, information, materials or things, as he or she may reasonably require,

(c) be entitled at all reasonable times to enter and inspect any land or premises or structure (other than a dwelling) which is owned, used, controlled or managed by a local authority or other body.

(2) It is the duty of a local authority (its members and employees) or other body to afford every facility and co-operation to a local government auditor including the giving of information which he or she may reasonably request.

(3) Any person who obstructs or impedes or refuses to comply with a request of a local government auditor acting in the exercise of any of the functions conferred on him or her by this section is guilty of an offence and is liable on summary conviction to a fine not exceeding £1,500 or, at the discretion of the court, to imprisonment for a term not exceeding 6 months or to both.

(4) Summary proceedings for an offence under this section may be brought by the Director of Audit.

Audit opinion and report.

120.—(1) On completion of the audit of accounts of a local authority or other body, the local government auditor—

(a) shall enter his or her opinion (in this Chapter referred to as an “audit opinion”) in a form consistent with the code of audit practice referred to in section 117 on the relevant annual financial statement (in this Chapter referred to as the “audited financial statement”),

(b) shall send copies of the audited financial statement without delay to the local authority or other body concerned, to the Director of Audit and to the Minister, and

(c) may prepare a report (in this Chapter referred to as an “auditor's report”) on any matter or matters which come to his or her notice during the course of the audit and such report shall accompany the audited financial statement.

(2) (a) Where the local government auditor considers it appropriate in the public interest to do so, he or she may prepare a report (in this Chapter referred to as an “auditor's special report”) on any matter or matters which come to his or her notice during the course of the audit before the completion of such audit.

(b) The auditor's special report shall be sent without delay to the local authority or other body concerned, to the Director of Audit and to the Minister.

(3) An audit opinion, auditor's report or auditor's special report shall be addressed to the local authority or other body concerned.

(4) Before the finalisation of an auditor's report or an auditor's special report, the local government auditor shall consult with the manager or chief officer of the audited body concerned, as the case may be, in respect of the matters the subject of such report and shall consider and record the comments of the manager or chief officer, as the case may be, which are of material significance to such matters.

Consideration of annual financial statement and auditor's report.

121.—(1) Following receipt by the local authority or joint body of the audited financial statement, auditor's report or auditor's special report, the manager for that local authority or joint body shall submit the statement for consideration at the next practicable meeting of the local authority or joint body concerned.

(2) At any time within 3 months of the audited financial statement, auditor's report or auditor's special report having been submitted to the local authority or joint body in accordance with section 120 , the local government auditor who carried out the audit may notify the local authority or joint body that he or she wishes to speak to that authority or body about it.

(3) Following notification under subsection (2), a local government auditor is entitled to speak to the local authority or joint body at its next meeting following the notification about the audited financial statement, auditor's report or auditor's special report or at such other meeting as he or she may specify.

Audit committee.

122.—(1) A local authority or joint body may, within 3 months of the meeting for which an audited financial statement, auditor's report or auditor's special report was submitted in accordance with section 121 (1), establish a committee (in this Chapter referred to as an “audit committee”).

(2) An audit committee consists of such members of the local authority or joint body as the authority or body may decide but in no case may the number exceed half of the total number of members or 7 members, whichever is the lesser number.

(3) An audit committee may consider the audited financial statement of the local authority or joint body, as the case may be, together with any auditor's report or auditor's special report thereon and any other related matters.

(4) All meetings of an audit committee shall be in public.

(5) At the request of an audit committee the local government auditor who conducted the audit shall attend a meeting of the audit committee to clarify such issues as may be necessary in relation to the content of the auditor's report or auditor's special report or otherwise.

(6) The issue to be discussed by an audit committee at a meeting which a local government auditor attends is subject to such guidelines as the Minister may from time to time issue, but in no case while the local government auditor is in attendance may there be discussed an issue relating to—

(a) a surcharge under section 12 of the Local Government (Ireland) Act, 1871, or

(b) a charge under section 20 of the Local Government (Ireland) Act, 1902 (as amended by section 61(3) of the Local Government Act, 1925 ).

(7) At the request of the audit committee the manager for the local authority or joint body concerned shall attend the meeting of the committee and may arrange for the attendance of such other employees, as he or she may consider appropriate.

(8) The audit committee shall report to the local authority or joint body on its consideration of the audited financial statement, auditor's report or auditor's special report.

(9) A local government auditor is entitled to qualified privilege in relation to any statements made by him or her at an audit committee meeting or at a meeting referred to in section 121 (3).

Extraordinary audit.

123.—(1) The Minister may direct that an extraordinary audit of accounts of a local authority or other body, or of an aspect of those accounts, be carried out by a local government auditor if it appears to the Minister appropriate to do so, by reason of information contained in an auditor's report or a special auditor's report or for any other reason.

(2) Sections 117 to 119 apply to the conduct of an extraordinary audit, with any necessary modifications or adaptations.

(3) Sections 120 to 122 apply to a report resulting from an extraordinary audit.

Re-assignment of audit.

124.—(1) Where the local government auditor who conducted or is conducting an audit dies, retires, resigns or is otherwise not available, the Director of Audit may assign another local government auditor to be the local government auditor for the audit.

(2) At any attendance by a local government auditor assigned under subsection (1) at any meeting of a local authority or joint body he or she shall be deemed to have conducted the audit.

Audit fees.

125.—(1) The Minister may from time to time prescribe by regulations a fee or scale of fees in respect of the audits of accounts which are required to be audited in accordance with this Act.

(2) A local authority or other body shall pay to the Minister such amount as determined in accordance with such regulations made under this section.

Certification of claims, returns, etc.

126.—If required by the Minister, the Director of Audit shall make arrangements for local government auditors to certify claims or returns, or any class of claims or returns, in respect of grants, subsidies or other money due to a local authority or other body by a department of State, public authority or other local authority.

PART 13

Local Authorities and the Local Community

Consultation with the local community.

127.—(1) A local authority may take such steps as it considers appropriate to consult with and promote effective participation by the local community in local government.

(2) Without prejudice to the generality of subsection (1) a local authority may—

(a) undertake such action under section 64 as the authority may consider appropriate,

(b) establish strategic policy committees or a municipal policy committee in accordance with Part 7,

(c) consult with local sectoral, community or other groups,

(d) arrange for the representation on area or other relevant committees of the authority of persons having knowledge or experience of relevance to the work of the particular committee,

(e) consult with a recognised association under section 128 ,

(f) make arrangements for attendance and raising of issues by interested persons at meetings of the authority or of any of its committees in accordance with such rules as may be determined by resolution of the authority,

(g) arrange for the holding of information meetings and the dissemination of information to the public in relation to any matter connected with its functions.

(3) (a) Where in relation to any function of a local authority under this or under any other enactment the relevant enactment requires the publication of a notice in a newspaper and the invitation of submissions or observations in connection with the performance of that function, the local authority may take such additional steps as it may consider appropriate to publicise, facilitate or promote the consultation process including the use of other forms of communications, including local radio stations, and the use of electronic forms of communication.

(b) A local authority may, in respect of reports, plans or any other material in relation to the performance of its functions, arrange for the making available or display of such materials at suitable locations additional to those required by this or any other enactment.

(4) Nothing in this section shall be read as limiting or departing from the role of a local authority as an elected body.

Recognised associations.

128.—(1) A local authority may declare that any body, whether corporate or unincorporate, be a recognised association for the purposes of this section where the local authority is of the opinion that the body is concerned with promoting the interests of the local community, or any part of or group within the local community, or of all or a part of the administrative area of that local authority.

(2) A local authority may—

(a) consult a recognised association on any relevant matter,

(b) provide assistance in money or in kind to such association,

(c) make arrangements with a recognised association under section 13(6) of the Roads Act, 1993 , or Chapter 4 of Part 9

(d) enter into an agreement in writing with a recognised association for the carrying out by the association on behalf of the local authority of certain functions of the authority which in its opinion may be satisfactorily carried out by the recognised association, subject to such terms, conditions, restrictions and other requirements as the authority considers necessary and specifies in the agreement.

(3) Subsection (2)(d) does not apply in respect of a reserved function, the function to make arrangements under section 13(6) of the Roads Act, 1993 , or Chapter 4 of Part 9 or any other function as the Minister may prescribe by regulations.

(4) Any works or other thing carried out or done by a recognised association in good faith as a result of an agreement made under subsection (2)(d) and in accordance with every requirement of such agreement shall be regarded as if the works or other thing was duly authorised, carried out or done by the local authority.

(5) For the purposes of subsections (1) and (2), a local authority may have regard as to whether in its opinion—

(a) a body is properly constituted and representative,

(b) adequate financial and accounting arrangements are in place, and

(c) the body is in a position to comply with such requirements as the local authority may in all the circumstances of the case consider necessary and reasonable for such purposes.

(6) A declaration under subsection (1) is a reserved function.

(7) The Minister may by regulations prescribe such matters relating to recognised associations as he or she considers appropriate for the purpose of giving effect to this section including the procedures to be followed for the termination of an agreement under subsection (2)(d).

County or City Development Boards.

129.—(1) There shall be established, by order of the Minister under this subsection, in each county and city a body to be known as the “.......County Development Board” or “.......City Development Board” as the case may be (in this section referred to as the “Board”) with the name of the appropriate county or city prefixed.

(2) A Board shall, in so far as is provided by this section, operate under the aegis of the relevant county council or city council but is otherwise independent in the performance of its functions.

(3) Subject to and in accordance with guidelines issued under subsection (9), the membership of a Board comprises—

(a) the members of the county council's corporate policy group or city council's corporate policy group (as the case may be) and the relevant county manager or city manager;

(b) representatives of public authorities operating in the county or city concerned;

(c) such representatives of social interests, to be known collectively in the context of a Board as the social partners, as may be provided for in such guidelines;

(d) such representatives of publicly funded or supported local development bodies concerned with local enterprise, rural development or community development as may be provided for in such guidelines;

(e) such other persons (if any) as may be provided for by such guidelines.

(4) (a) Subject to paragraph (b), the chairperson of a Board shall be appointed by the Board on nomination by the corporate policy group of the county council or city council concerned from among members of the group.

(b) After the commencement of Chapter 3 of Part 5 the chairperson of the Board shall be the Cathaoirleach of the county council or city council concerned.

(5) The functions of a Board are—

(a) to take such steps, as the Board may consider appropriate, to enable each of the bodies and interests, whose functions affect the economic, social or cultural development of the county or city or any part of the county or city and its people (in this section referred to as the “community”) to provide the maximum benefit each of them can to such development, both individually and collectively;

(b) to draw up a strategy (in this section referred to as the “strategy”) for the economic, social and cultural development of the county or city and the community;

(c) to seek to secure that the policies and operations of the bodies and interests represented on the Board and of others accord generally with the strategy;

(d) to encourage and promote on an ongoing basis the co-ordination of the activities of the bodies and interests represented on the Board and co-operation generally between such bodies and interests so as to optimise resources and combined effort for the common good of the community.

(6) (a) A public authority, local authority, or other body which is represented on a Board, shall in so far as is not inconsistent with the performance of its functions—

(i) co-operate with the Board in its work, and

(ii) endeavour to comply with a request from the Board in respect of information of relevance to its functions.

(b) A Board may make recommendations to any public authority, local authority or other person as to the way in which the policies and programmes of such body or person should develop or operate as regards the county or city concerned and the community.

(c) Subject to the requirements of any other enactment, any public authority, local authority, or body referred to in paragraph (a), shall in the performance of its functions as regards a county or city, have regard to the strategy and to any recommendations made under paragraph (b).

(7) In performing its functions a Board shall have regard to Government policy and shall comply with any general policy directives as may be given to it by the Minister.

(8) The chief officer of a Board shall be an employee of the relevant county council or city council.

(9) The Minister may issue general guidelines for the purposes of this section as regards—

(a) representation on a Board in accordance with subsection (3) and the selection and tenure of such representatives;

(b) the involvement of other bodies and interests in the work of a Board;

(c) the funding and administration of a Board;

(d) the preparation of the strategy and its ratification by the county council or city council concerned;

(e) such other matters as he or she considers appropriate.

(10) A Board has all such powers as are necessary for or incidental to the performance of its functions under this section.

(11) (a) This section applies and has effect in relation to a county development board or a city development board constituted before the commencement of an order under subsection (1).

(b) Any guidelines relating to county development boards and city development boards which were issued by the Minister before the commencement of this section and current at such commencement apply and have effect as if issued under this section.

(c) Guidelines issued under this section may be revised by the Minister from time to time as required, or withdrawn, and new guidelines issued.

PART 14

The Local Government Service

Chapter 1

The Elected Council

Policy role of elected council.

130.—It is a function of the elected council of a local authority to determine by resolution the policy of the local authority subject to and in accordance with this Act and the other enactments relating to that authority.

Reserved functions.

131.—(1) (a) The elected council of a local authority or the members of a joint body shall directly exercise and perform by resolution at a meeting of the local authority or body every function to which this section applies.

(b) The functions referred to in paragraph (a) shall be known as reserved functions of a local authority or of a joint body, as the case may be, and in this Act are referred to as “reserved functions”.

(2) This section applies to every function—

(a) designated as a reserved function by any provision of this Act (including a designation by order under subsection (3)) or as specified in Schedule 14;

(b) designated as a reserved function by any provision of any other enactment relating to a local authority or joint body;

(c) expressly made exercisable by resolution under this Act or under any other enactment relating to a local authority or joint body which was enacted after the 13th day of June, 1940.

(3) (a) The Minister may by order designate a specified function of local authorities or joint bodies to be a reserved function and for so long as an order is in force the function is a reserved function.

(b) Any order made under subsection (2) of section 41 of the Local Government Act, 1991 , or continued in force by subsection (5) of that section shall continue in force as if made under this subsection and may be amended or revoked accordingly.

(4) Any reference to a reserved function in respect of a local authority or joint body in any enactment enacted before the commencement of this provision or to a function exercisable by resolution to which subsection (2)(c) applies shall be read as a reference to a reserved function for the purposes of this Act.

(5) For the purposes of this section “function” does not include a function relating to the employees of a local authority or joint body or the direction, supervision, service, remuneration or discipline of such employees or any of them, other than a function referred to in section 145 (1).

Reserved functions: duty of manager.

132.—(1) It is the duty of every manager to carry into effect all lawful directions of the elected council of a local authority or a joint body for which he or she is manager in relation to the exercise and performance of the reserved functions of the local authority or joint body.

(2) (a) Where in relation to the exercise or performance of a reserved function a legal opinion was obtained by a local authority or joint body, the elected council or joint body may, without prejudice to section 153 , by resolution direct that a second such opinion be obtained by the authority.

(b) Nothing in this subsection shall prejudice a local authority or joint body in carrying out any function which the authority or body is required by or under statute or by order of a court to duly carry out.

(3) It is the duty of every manager to advise and assist the elected council of a local authority or a joint body for which he or she is manager—

(a) generally as regards the exercise or performance by the council or body of its reserved functions, and

(b) as regards any particular matter or thing in relation to such exercise or performance on or in respect of which the council or body requests the advice or assistance of the manager,

and that council or body shall have regard to that advice or assistance.

Corporate policy group.

133.—(1) The elected council of every county council and city council shall form a committee, to be known as the corporate policy group, which shall consist of the Cathaoirleach and the chairpersons of the strategic policy committees, and which in this section is referred to as the “policy group” and which shall be chaired by the Cathaoirleach.

(2) (a) The policy group may advise and assist the elected council in the formulation, development, monitoring and review of policy for the local authority and for that purpose propose arrangements for the consideration of policy matters and the organisation of related business by the elected council.

(b) The policy group may make proposals for the allocation of business as between strategic policy committees and for the general co-ordination of such business.

(c) Nothing in this subsection prevents the submission of a report by a strategic policy committee directly to the elected council.

(3) The manager shall prepare the corporate plan for the local authority in consultation with the policy group in accordance with section 134 .

(4) (a) The manager shall consult the policy group in the preparation of the local authority's draft budget and the policy group may for that purpose avail of the assistance of not more than 3 additional persons, who are not members of the authority.

(b) The additional persons referred to in paragraph (a) shall be persons who in the opinion of the policy group have financial, organisational or other knowledge or experience likely to be of special relevance to the policy group's consideration of the authority's draft budget.

(5) (a) The policy group may request the manager to provide a report to the policy group on any matter or thing related to a function of the local authority and specified by the policy group and, subject to paragraph (b), the manager shall provide such report.

(b) A manager shall provide such a report in so far as compliance with such request would not—

(i) duplicate a similar request by the elected council or a direction under section 138 (2), or

(ii) be contrary to law.

(6) (a) Where the policy group requests a report under subsection (5), the Cathaoirleach may at the time of such request by direction in writing signed and dated by him or her and given to the manager require the manager to refrain from doing any particular act, matter or thing related to the subject matter of the report and specifically mentioned in the direction and which the local authority or manager concerned can lawfully refrain from doing.

(b) Subject to paragraph (c), a direction under paragraph (a) shall continue to have effect, unless withdrawn, until the next meeting of the local authority and may be extended by resolution at that meeting and where not so extended ceases to have effect.

(c) A direction under paragraph (a) (whether extended under paragraph (b) or not) shall not in any case have effect for longer than 3 months and shall cease to have effect on the expiration of 3 months after the date on which it is given, unless it is earlier withdrawn or has ceased to have effect under paragraph (b).

(d) Where a direction ceases to have effect a similar direction or a direction of substantially like effect in relation to the act, matter or thing in question may not be given.

(e) The manager shall comply with a direction duly and lawfully given under this subsection.

(7) Nothing in this section shall prejudice a local authority in carrying out at any time any function which a local authority or manager is required by or under statute or by order of a court to carry out and any direction claiming to be given under subsection (6) which contravenes this subsection is invalid.

(8) Nothing in this section prejudices or derogates from the functions conferred on an elected council by this or any other enactment.

(9) Nothing in this section prevents the manager from dealing immediately with any situation which he or she considers is an emergency situation calling for immediate action and section 138 (5) applies for the purposes of this subsection.

Corporate plan.

134.—(1) In this section, except where the context otherwise requires—

“local authority” means a county council or a city council;

“specified period” means a period not longer than 6 months from—

(a) in a local election year, the date of the annual meeting,

(b) in the case of a review, the date of a resolution or the date of a request under subsection (8).

(2) Within the specified period and in accordance with this section, every local authority shall prepare a statement of strategy for the local authority (in this section referred to as a “corporate plan”).

(3) The manager shall—

(a) prepare the corporate plan in consultation with the policy group,

(b) fix a schedule of meetings for that purpose, and

(c) provide such assistance (including assistance by way of consultancy or otherwise) as may be practicable to assist in the preparation of the corporate plan and in its consideration by the policy group.

(4) (a) It is the responsibility and the duty of the policy group and of the manager to take all such steps as are necessary to ensure that the corporate plan is submitted to the elected council for approval within the specified period.

(b) Where the corporate plan is not submitted in accordance with paragraph (a)

(i) the Cathaoirleach shall convene a special meeting within 14 days of the expiration of such period, and

(ii) the Cathaoirleach and the manager shall make a joint submission to the elected council at the special meeting outlining the steps to be taken to ensure its completion and when it is proposed to submit the corporate plan to the elected council.

(5) (a) The elected council shall consider the corporate plan submitted in accordance with subsection (4) and may make such amendments as it considers appropriate and shall approve it with or without amendments.

(b) Where the corporate plan is not approved in accordance with paragraph (a) within the period of 2 months from the date of its submission to the elected council, it shall be deemed to be approved on the expiration of that period, subject to any amendments—

(i) made to it under paragraph (a) within that period, or

(ii) which are otherwise necessary or consequential and which the manager may make within 2 weeks after the expiration of that period.

(6) The corporate plan shall be prepared on the basis of an organisational wide strategic approach encompassing the various activities of the local authority concerned and shall include—

(a) a statement of the principal activities of the local authority,

(b) the objectives and priorities for each of the principal activities and strategies for achieving those objectives,

(c) the manner in which the authority proposes to assess its performance in respect of each such activity, taking account of relevant service indicators and of the need to work towards best practice in service delivery and in the general operation of the local authority,

(d) human resources activities (including training and development) to be undertaken for the staff of the local authority and, where appropriate for the elected council,

(e) the organisational structure of the local authority, both elected council and staff, including corporate support and information technology and the improvements proposed to promote efficiency of operation and customer service and in general to support the corporate plan,

(f) such other matters as may be set out in guidelines issued under subsection (10) for the purposes of this section.

(7) In preparing its corporate plan a local authority shall take account of such policies and objectives in relation to any of its functional programmes as are set out in any other plan, statement, strategy or other document prepared by it under any other provision of this or of any other enactment and shall comply with sections 69, 71 and 129.

(8) (a) A local authority may at any time decide by resolution to review its corporate plan and subsections (3) to (7) shall apply in relation to any such review.

(b) If requested by the Minister, a local authority shall carry out a review and following such review may make any amendments or a new corporate plan and subsections (3) to (7) shall apply in relation to any such review.

(9) The approval of the corporate plan, with or without amendments, is a reserved function.

(10) (a) From time to time the Minister may issue guidelines in connection with the preparation of corporate plans by local authorities for the purposes of this section and local authorities shall have regard to such guidelines.

(b) Guidelines may also provide, where relevant, for a corporate plan of a local authority to take account of and to reflect the principal activities of any town councils within its administrative area and for necessary consultation for that purpose.

(c) Any guidelines issued by the Minister in relation to the preparation of corporate plans by local authorities which are current on the date of the commencement of this provision shall be deemed to have issued in accordance with this section.

(d) Any corporate plan which is in the process of being adopted by a local authority immediately before the issue of guidelines referred to in paragraph (c) shall be deemed to have been adopted with due regard to those guidelines.

(11) (a) The manager shall prepare an annual progress report in respect of the local authority's corporate plan and such report shall be submitted to the elected council—

(i) at the same time as the authority's draft budget, or

(ii) at such other time as the elected council may by resolution decide.

(b) Details of the annual progress report shall be recorded in the local authority's annual report.

Report on capital programme.

135.—(1) Before the start of each local financial year the manager shall prepare and submit to the elected council a report indicating the programme of capital projects proposed by the local authority for the forthcoming and the following two local financial years having regard to the availability of resources.

(2) A report prepared under subsection (1) may be considered at the local authority budget meeting or at such other meeting as the elected council may by resolution decide.

(3) In considering the question of the resources likely to be available to it a local authority shall so consider—

(a) on the basis of a realistic and prudent assessment of the position, and

(b) on the basis of the information available to it at the time and having regard to the measures proposed by the authority to raise funding itself.

Furnishing of information to elected council.

136.—Without prejudice to section 105 , 135, 137 or 138 a manager shall, whenever requested—

(a) by an elected council of a local authority for which he or she is the manager or by its Cathaoirleach, or

(b) by a joint body for which he or she is the manager, or by its chairperson,

afford to the council, Cathaoirleach, joint body or chairperson (as the case may be) all information that may be in the possession or procurement of such manager in regard to any act, matter or thing relating to or concerning any business or transaction of such local authority or body which is mentioned in the request.

Plans, specifications to be prepared for elected council.

137.—(1) The elected council or a joint body may at any time by resolution require the manager for the local authority or joint body concerned to prepare and submit to the elected council or joint body, as the case may be—

(a) plans and specifications for the execution of any particular work specified in the resolution which can lawfully be executed by the local authority or joint body, and

(b) an estimate of the probable cost of the execution of such work.

(2) Whenever the elected council or joint body passes a resolution to which subsection (1) relates, the manager concerned shall, as soon as conveniently may be, prepare and submit to the elected council or joint body, plans and specifications and an estimate in accordance with the resolution.

Prior information to elected council.

138.—(1) The manager shall inform the elected council or joint body concerned—

(a) before any works (other than works of maintenance or repair) of the local authority or joint body concerned are undertaken, or

(b) before committing the local authority or joint body concerned to any expenditure in connection with proposed works (other than works of maintenance or repair).

(2) Subject to this section, an elected council or joint body may by resolution direct that, before the manager performs any specified executive function of the local authority or joint body, he or she shall inform the elected council or joint body, as the case may be, of the manner in which he or she proposes to perform that function, and the manager shall comply with the resolution.

(3) A resolution under subsection (2) may relate to any particular case or occasion or to every case or occasion of the performance of the specified executive function and may define what information is to be given and how and when it is to be given and the manager shall comply with the resolution.

(4) Nothing in this section prevents the manager from dealing immediately with any situation which he or she considers is an emergency situation calling for immediate action without regard to subsections (1) to (3).

(5) Without prejudice to the generality of subsection (4), an emergency situation for the purpose of that subsection shall be deemed to include a situation where, in the opinion of the manager, the works concerned are urgent and necessary (having regard to personal health, public health or safety considerations) in order to provide a reasonable standard of accommodation for any person.

Direction that works not proceed.

139.—(1) Where the elected council or joint body is informed in accordance with section 138 of any works (not being any works which the local authority or joint body are required by or under statute or by order of a court to undertake), the elected council or joint body, as the case may be, may by resolution, direct that those works shall not proceed.

(2) The manager shall comply with a resolution of an elected council or joint body duly and lawfully passed under this section.

Requirement that a particular thing be done.

140.—(1) In this section “local authority” includes a joint body.

(2) Subject to this section, an elected council or joint body may by resolution require any particular act, matter or thing specifically mentioned in the resolution and which the local authority or the manager concerned can lawfully do or effect, to be done or effected in the performance of the executive functions of the local authority.

(3) Notice of the intention to propose a resolution under this section shall be given in writing to the manager and the notice—

(a) shall be signed by at least 3 members,

(b) shall contain the text of the proposed resolution, and

(c) may require that the proposed resolution be considered at a special meeting and shall then specify a day (not less than 7 days after the day on which the notice is received by the manager) for the holding of the special meeting.

(4) A resolution under this section shall not be considered at a meeting of the local authority which is held less than 7 days after the day on which the manager received the relevant notice under subsection (3).

(5) Where the manager receives a notice under subsection (3), he or she shall, as soon as possible, send a copy of the notice to every member of the local authority and, if the notice requires a special meeting and subsection (6) does not apply, a special meeting of the local authority shall be convened for the day specified in that behalf in the notice.

(6) Where a notice under subsection (3) specifies a day for the holding of a special meeting, and an ordinary meeting of the local authority is to be held on a day within the period of 14 days after the day on which the manager receives the notice, the resolution shall be considered at that ordinary meeting and a special meeting shall not be convened.

(7) Without prejudice to any other relevant requirements, it is necessary for the passing of a resolution under this section that at least one-third of the total number of members of the local authority concerned vote in favour of the resolution.

(8) A motion to pass a resolution under this section shall be considered before any other business at the meeting, other than—

(a) the election of a Cathaoirleach at any meeting where that office falls to be filled in accordance with Part 5, or

(b) any other business which the elected council or joint body may decide should take precedence.

(9) Where a resolution is duly and lawfully passed under this section, and if and when and in so far as money for its purpose is or has been provided, the manager shall cause the act, matter or thing mentioned in the resolution to be implemented.

(10) A resolution under this section does not apply or extend—

(a) to the performance of any function of a local authority generally,

(b) to every case or occasion of the performance of any such function or to a number or class of such cases or occasions so extended as to be substantially or in effect every case or occasion on which any such function is performed,

(c) to every case or occasion of the performance of any such function in a particular area or to a number or class of such cases or occasions so extended as to be substantially or in effect every case or occasion on which any such function is performed in that area, or

(d) so as to prevent the performance of any function of a local authority which the authority or the manager is required by law or by order of a court to perform,

and any resolution claiming to be passed under this section which contravenes this subsection is void.

(11) This section is without prejudice to section 34 of the Act of 2000 insofar as the said section 34 applies to notices under subsection (3) and resolutions referred to in subsection (7).

Duty of members appointed to other bodies.

141.—(1) Where one or more than one member of a local authority is elected, appointed or nominated by that authority to another body, whether established by or under statute or otherwise, it is the duty of that member or members to represent the local authority and to present a report to it on the activities and operation of that body—

(a) annually, or

(b) at any other time, if so requested by resolution or by the Cathaoirleach.

(2) Every report to which subsection (1) relates shall be presented by the member or members concerned to a meeting of the local authority.

(3) Nothing in this section requires the disclosure of information to the authority which is confidential or which could not otherwise be disclosed.

(4) This section also applies to any person who holds membership of a body, by virtue of being Cathaoirleach or any other member of a local authority.

Members' expenses, remuneration, etc.

142.—(1) The Minister may by regulations, made with the consent of the Minister for Finance, provide for the payment by a local authority of allowances for expenses incurred by its members in connection with—

(a) attendance at meetings of the local authority, a committee of that authority or a joint committee or joint body involving that authority;

(b) attendance at conferences, seminars, training or other events to which subsection (5) applies;

(c) the post of chair of a strategic policy committee;

(d) any other specified matter.

(2) Regulations under this section may also provide for—

(a) the payment of remuneration to members or to Cathaoirligh of specified classes of local authorities, or

(b) subject to subsection (4)(i), the making of superannuation arrangements in respect of members of specified classes of local authorities.

(3) Any payments referred to in subsection (1) or (2) are subject to and shall be made in accordance with regulations made under this section.

(4) Regulations under this section may provide for—

(a) an annual amount in respect of remuneration in such cases as may be specified;

(b) a composite annual allowance in respect of attendances at meeting referred to in subsection (1)(a) and at such events or other matters as may be specified;

(c) arrangements to apply as regards the authorisation under subsection (5) by the local authority of attendances to which that subsection applies;

(d) conditions, restrictions or other requirements to apply in relation to allowances, remuneration or superannuation and the making of payments (including the abatement or reduction in whole or in part of allowances or remuneration in specified circumstances or for specified persons in receipt of allowances or remuneration provided by a public authority or otherwise from public funds);

(e) the furnishing of specified information to a local authority for the purposes of this section;

(f) the payment of allowances to persons who are not members of a local authority;

(g) a public register of attendances and payments to which this section and section 143 relate;

(h) deductions from payments referred to in subsection (1) or (2) for such matters as may be specified;

(i) the approval of the Minister, given with the consent of the Minister for Finance, to such arrangements for superannuation purposes as may be specified;

(j) the giving of directions from time to time in relation to any matter the subject of such regulations;

(k) any other matters which appear to the Minister to be necessary or expedient for the purposes of this section.

(5) (a) This subsection applies to a conference, seminar, training or other meeting or event held, whether within or outside the State, for the purpose of discussing, obtaining or imparting information regarding or connected with any matter that is of concern to the local authority in relation to the performance of its functions and is relevant to its administrative area and to the local community.

(b) An elected council may authorise one or more of its members to represent the authority at a meeting or event to which this subsection applies and such authorisation may, subject to regulations under this section, be given in an individual case or as regards such attendances generally during a particular year.

(c) A local authority may provide in its budget an amount to meet expenditure for the purposes of this subsection.

(d) An elected council shall not authorise under this subsection unless, having had regard to the following matters, it is satisfied that the authorisation is justified by reference to—

(i) the benefits likely to accrue,

(ii) the general interests of its administrative area and the local community, and

(iii) the total cost involved.

(e) An authorisation under this subsection is a reserved function and such authorisations shall not exceed the amount provided for in accordance with paragraph (c).

(f) Where a member of an elected council attends a meeting or event by virtue of an authorisation under this section, he or she shall submit a summary of the proceedings to the next ordinary meeting of the local authority.

(g) Without prejudice to paragraphs (a) to (f), the Minister may issue general guidelines for the purposes of this subsection, including guidelines as to expenditure in relation to attendance at specified information or training events.

(6) A local authority shall comply with any guidelines issued under subsection (5)(g).

(7) A local authority of a class specified for the purposes of subsection (2) may, in relation to its members or a class or classes of its members and subject to regulations under this section, make provision in relation to the superannuation of its members or in relation to the superannuation of a class or classes of its members.

(8) Regulations made under section 51 of the Local Government Act, 1991 , and in force at the commencement of this provision shall continue in force and have effect as if made under this section and may be amended or revoked accordingly.

Allowance for Cathaoirleach and Leas-Chathaoirleach.

143.—(1) (a) A local authority may pay an allowance for reasonable expenses to its Cathaoirleach.

(b) A local authority may pay an allowance for reasonable expenses to its Leas-Chathaoirleach.

(2) A decision to pay an allowance under subsection (1) and the determination of the amount of the allowance is a reserved function.

(3) (a) After consultation with the Minister for Finance, the Minister may issue directions to local authorities or specified classes of local authorities for the purposes of this section.

(b) Without prejudice to paragraph (a), directions may specify—

(i) particular considerations to which the local authority shall have regard, and

(ii) the maximum amounts of the allowances payable under this section, including different amounts for different classes of local authorities.

Chapter 2

Position of Manager

Position of manager.

144.—(1) For every county and city there shall be a manager to be known as “the ....... County Manager” or “the ....... City Manager”, as appropriate (with the name of the county or city prefixed) who shall hold employment under that county council or city council, as the case may be.

(2) Any function which immediately before the commencement of this provision is, by virtue of any enactment a function of the town clerk of a city shall, on and from such commencement, vest in and be a function of the manager of the local authority concerned.

(3) A county manager shall by virtue of his or her position be the manager—

(a) for every town council the administrative area of which is situated within the county concerned, and

(b) for every joint body whose functional area is wholly situated within such county.

(4) Where the functional area of a joint body extends into 2 or more counties or into a city and one or more counties, then such county or city manager as the Minister shall by order appoint shall also be the manager for such joint body.

(5) Where immediately before the commencement of this provision an order is in force under section 8(1) of the County Management Act, 1940 , appointing a manager for a joint body, such order shall be deemed to have been made under subsection (4).

(6) Any person who immediately before the commencement of this provision held either in a temporary or permanent capacity the office of county or city manager or whose tenure as manager is governed by section 147 shall, on and from such commencement, continue to be a temporary manager or a manager, as the case may be, within the meaning and for the purposes of this Part.

(7) The Minister may prescribe by regulations any body to be a joint body and any body so prescribed shall be a joint body for the purposes of this section.

(8) The position of manager is, subject to section 145 , an office to which the Local Authorities (Officers and Employees) Act, 1926 , applies.

(9) A reference in any enactment to a manager for a local authority or to any cognate expression shall be read as a reference to a manager for a local authority for the purposes of this section.

Appointment of manager.

145.—(1) Subject to subsection (3), the following are reserved functions—

(a) the appointment by a county council or city council of a manager under section 6 of the Local Authorities (Officers and Employees) Act, 1926 (in this section referred to as the “Act of 1926”) by virtue of a recommendation of the Local Appointments Commissioners, and

(b) the suspension or removal from employment of a manager in accordance with section 146 .

(2) For the purposes of section 6 of the Act of 1926 a request shall be deemed to have been submitted in respect of the employment of a manager—

(a) in the case of a manager to whom section 147 applies,

(i) 6 months in advance of the expiration of the tenure period referred to in section 147 (1), or

(ii) on the date that manager ceases to hold employment,

whichever is the earlier, and

(b) in any other case,

(i) 6 months in advance of the date that manager would attain the age-limit for his or her employment, or

(ii) on the date that manager ceases to hold employment,

whichever is the earlier.

(3) Where, as respects a county council or city council—

(a) a recommendation is made under section 6 of the Act of 1926 of a person for appointment as the manager, and

(b) on the expiration of 3 months after the date of the recommendation, the person has not become appointed, under subsection (1), then, notwithstanding any other provision of this or any other enactment, the person shall thereupon, if still available for appointment, become and be appointed by virtue of this subsection as the manager.

(4) Where a position of manager becomes vacant the Minister shall appoint a person to be the manager temporarily until a permanent appointment to the position is made but such temporary appointment may be terminated by the Minister at any time.

(5) Section 5 of the Act of 1926 does not apply to the position of manager.

Suspension and removal of manager.

146.—(1) (a) Subject to this section, the elected council of a county council or city council may by resolution suspend or remove from employment the manager for such county council or city council, as the case may be, for stated misbehaviour or if his or her suspension or removal appears to them to be necessary for the effective performance by the county council or city council, as the case may be, of its functions.

(b) A copy of any resolution passed under this section shall be sent without delay to the Minister.

(2) Notice of the intention to propose a resolution under this section shall—

(a) be signed by at least one-third of the total number of members of the county council or city council concerned,

(b) contain a statement of the reasons for the proposed suspension or removal,

(c) in the case of a suspension, specify a period not exceeding 2 months for the proposed suspension,

(d) specify a day for the holding of a special meeting to consider the proposed suspension or removal being a day which is not less than 21 days after the day on which the notice is delivered under paragraph (e),

(e) be delivered to the meetings administrator, and

(f) be delivered or sent to the manager concerned.

(3) The meetings administrator shall on receipt of a notice and without delay send a copy of it to every member of the local authority and convene a special meeting for the date so specified to consider the proposed suspension or removal.

(4) The manager may prepare a statement of response in relation to the proposed suspension or removal and such statement shall be sent to each member of the local authority concerned.

(5) It is necessary for the passing of a resolution under this section that—

(a) at least three-quarters of the total number of members of the county council or city council concerned vote in favour of the resolution, and

(b) the members of the council concerned shall have considered any statement prepared by the manager under subsection (4).

(6) A person who is suspended under this section may subsequently be removed from office in accordance with this section.

(7) (a) A manager shall not be removed under this section without the sanction of the Minister given under this subsection.

(b) The Minister may appoint a panel of 3 persons—

(i) to consider the removal of a manager the subject of a resolution under this section and the manager's statement of response,

(ii) to recommend whether the Minister should give sanction to such removal, and

(iii) to make such other recommendations (if any) as the panel may consider appropriate in all the circumstances.

(c) A panel shall be independent in the performance of its functions.

(d) A panel shall include a chairperson and 2 other persons having knowledge of or experience in local government, human resources or management.

(e) A sanction shall not be given under this subsection except by virtue of a recommendation under paragraph (b).

(8) The Minister may by regulations prescribe any matter of procedure for the purposes of this section.

Tenure of manager.

147.—(1) Notwithstanding any other enactment, a person appointed to a position of manager holds the employment unless he or she earlier dies, resigns or is removed, during whichever of the following tenure periods is the shorter—

(a) a period of such length as the Minister specifies by order,

(b) the period from the date of the appointment to the date on which he or she attains such age as the Minister specifies by order,

and on the expiration of that period he or she ceases to hold the employment.

(2) Notwithstanding any enactment (including subsection (1)) or instrument made under such enactment, the tenure period of a manager referred to in subsection (1)(a) shall, subject to and in accordance with this section and with regulations made by the Minister for the purposes of this subsection, be extended where notification (in this section referred to as the “prescribed notification”)—

(a) is given by the manager to the Cathaoirleach of the local authority concerned, and

(b) is in the form prescribed by regulations made under this section,

but in no case shall the tenure period as so extended exceed 10 years.

(3) On receipt of a prescribed notification the Cathaoirleach of the local authority concerned shall—

(a) inform the members of the local authority of it at the next meeting of that local authority, and

(b) transmit a copy of it to the Minister and to the Local Appointments Commissioners.

(4) The Minister may make regulations for the purposes of subsection (2) and such regulations may provide for:

(a) the form of the prescribed notification;

(b) the period (in this section referred to as the “notification period”) within which a prescribed notification shall be given;

(c) subject to subsection (2), the period by which the tenure period shall be extended;

(d) the positions of manager to which subsection (5) does not apply;

(e) the application of different periods for the purposes of paragraphs (b) and (c) to specified classes of manager.

(5) Subject to regulations made under subsection (4)(d):

(a) a manager whose tenure period is extended under subsection (2) shall not apply for appointment to any position of manager during the period commencing on the date the manager gives a prescribed notification and ending on a date which is 6 months prior to the expiration of the extended tenure period (in this subsection referred to as the “exclusion period”), and

(b) notwithstanding section 6 of the Local Authorities (Officers and Employees) Act, 1926 , a manager who has given a prescribed notification shall not be considered by the Local Appointments Commissioners for selection for any position of manager during the exclusion period.

(6) (a) A notification period referred to in subsection (4)(b) shall be wholly within the tenure period.

(b) A prescribed notification for the purposes of this section which is given outside of the notification period is invalid.

(7) Where the tenure period of a manager stands extended in accordance with this section, such extended tenure period shall be the tenure period for the purposes of subsection (2) of section 145 and that section shall apply accordingly.

(8) The Local Government (Tenure of Office) Order, 2000 ( S.I. No. 221 of 2000 ), and the Local Government (Tenure of Office of Managers) Regulations, 2000 ( S.I. No. 219 of 2000 ), shall be deemed to have been made under subsections (1) and (4), respectively, and shall continue to have effect and may be amended or revoked accordingly.

(9) Nothing in this section operates to interfere with or alter the tenure of a manager—

(a) appointed before the commencement of section 47 of the Local Government Act, 1991 (in this subsection referred to as the “Act of 1991”), or

(b) whose tenure is governed by an order under section 47 of the Act of 1991, or

(c) whose tenure is governed by such an order and section 47A (inserted by section 1 of the Local Government Act, 2000 ) of the Act of 1991,

notwithstanding the repeal by this Act of the Act of 1991 and of the Local Government Act, 2000 .

Deputy manager.

148.—(1) (a) A manager, following consultation with the Cathaoirleach of the county or city council concerned (in this section referred to as the “relevant Cathaoirleach”), may by order appoint an employee to be a deputy manager for the purposes of subsection (2) and may at any time terminate such appointment.

(b) An order under paragraph (a) may provide that where an appointee specified in the order is not available such other employee as may be so specified shall stand appointed as deputy manager for so long as the first-mentioned appointee is unavailable.

(c) An appointment under this subsection may be made by reference to a particular individual or to the holder for the time being of a particular employment.

(2) A deputy manager shall by virtue of this section act as and be the manager for the duration of any period which may arise from time to time (whether by way of vacation, illness or other reason) during which the manager is temporarily unable to act.

(3) (a) Where a manager has for any reason become temporarily unable to act and—

(i) has not made an appointment under subsection (1),

(ii) there is no subsisting appointment, or

(iii) the appointee is incapacitated or otherwise unable to act,

the relevant Cathaoirleach may appoint an employee of the local authority to be deputy manager for the remainder of the duration of the inability of the manager to act and may at any time terminate such appointment.

(b) Notification of an appointment under subsection (1) or (3) shall be sent to the Minister and every member of every local authority concerned as soon as may be after the appointment is made.

(4) (a) The Minister may appoint an employee of a local authority to be deputy manager if a manager is for any reason temporarily unable to act and an appointment under subsection (1) or (3) is not for the time being in force.

(b) The Minister may at any time terminate an appointment to which paragraph (a) applies.

(5) A deputy manager shall act as and be the manager during the continuance of the inability of the manager to act or until—

(a) the appointment is sooner terminated under subsection (1), (3) or (4), or

(b) on account of the death, retirement, resignation or inability otherwise to act, of the deputy manager.

(6) A reference in any enactment including this Act to a manager shall be read as including a deputy manager acting as manager in accordance with this section.

Executive functions.

149.—(1) In this section—

“elected council” includes the members of a joint body;

“local authority” includes a joint body.

(2) In respect of each local authority for which he or she is manager, a manager is responsible for—

(a) the efficient and effective operation of each such local authority, and

(b) for ensuring under section 132 the implementation without undue delay of the decisions of the elected council.

(3) For the purposes of discharging the responsibilities set out under subsection (2), the manager shall—

(a) exercise and perform in respect of each local authority for which he or she is the manager the executive functions of such local authority (including all functions in relation to the employees of each such local authority), and

(b) for that purpose carry on and manage and control generally the administration and business of the authority.

(4) Every function of a local authority which is not a reserved function is, for the purposes of this Act, an executive function of such local authority.

(5) All such matters and things, including the making of contracts and the affixing of the official seal, as are necessary for or incidental to the exercise or performance of the executive functions of a local authority shall, subject to this Act or any regulations made under it, be done by the manager for such local authority.

(6) Subject to law, the functions of a manager shall be performed in accordance with the policy of the local authority as determined by the elected council in accordance with Chapter 1 of this Part.

Chapter 3

Procedural Matters

Definitions.

150.—In this Chapter—

“elected council” includes the members of a joint body;

“local authority” includes a joint body.

Manager acting by signed order.

151.—(1) The manager shall in carrying out the executive functions for each local authority for which he or she is manager act by a written order signed and dated by him or her in respect of the functions to which this section applies.

(2) This section applies to every executive function which—

(a) is required by this or any other enactment to be done by order of a manager,

(b) is mentioned in Schedule 15,

(c) is designated by order made by the Minister under subsection (9), or

(d) is considered by the manager to be of sufficient importance to be done by order.

(3) Every manager shall keep, in respect of each local authority for which he or she is manager, a register in which is entered a copy of every order made by him or her in accordance with this section for such local authority.

(4) At every meeting of a local authority, there shall be available for inspection by the elected council so much of the register referred to in subsection (3) as contains any orders made by the manager since the last previous meeting of the local authority.

(5) Any member of a local authority is entitled on request to be furnished by the manager for the local authority with a copy of a particular order made by the manager.

(6) Every document claiming to be an order made and signed by a manager shall—

(a) be received in evidence without proof of the signature of the person claiming to sign such document or that such person was such manager, and

(b) until the contrary is proved, be deemed to be an order duly made and signed by such manager in accordance with this section and to have been so signed on the date stated in that document.

(7) Every document claiming to be certified in writing by a manager to be a true copy of an order made by a manager in accordance with this section shall—

(a) be received in evidence without proof of the signature of the person claiming so to certify or that such person was such manager, and

(b) until the contrary is proved, be deemed to be evidence of the contents of the order of which it claims to be a copy and of the fact that such order was duly made and signed by such manager in accordance with this section on the date stated in the certified copy.

(8) The failure or omission to act by signed order in accordance with this section does not of itself operate to invalidate any action or decision taken by a manager or a local authority.

(9) The Minister may by order designate an executive function to be a function to which this section applies.

(10) Subject to the provisions of any other enactment, nothing in this section shall be read as precluding the revocation or amendment of an order made by a manager by a subsequent such order.

(11) Nothing in Schedule 15 shall be read as prejudicing the functions conferred on an elected council by this Act.

Attendance of manager at local authority meetings.

152.—(1) Every manager has the right—

(a) to attend and speak at meetings of a local authority for which he or she is manager, and

(b) to take part in its discussions,

but shall not be entitled to vote on any question which is decided by a vote of the members of such local authority.

(2) In so far as it is not inconsistent with the due performance of functions by a manager in relation to the local authorities for which he or she is manager, a manager shall attend—

(a) any meeting of a local authority for which he or she is manager where he or she is requested by the elected council of that local authority to attend, and

(b) any meeting of a committee of a local authority where he or she is requested by the elected council of that local authority to attend.

(3) Whenever a manager attends a meeting of a local authority or of a committee of the local authority in accordance with subsection (2)

(a) he or she shall give to the elected council of such local authority or committee (as the case may be) such advice and assistance as shall reasonably be required of him or her by the council or committee (and the members of the council or committee shall have regard to that advice or assistance), and

(b) he or she shall arrange for the attendance at such meeting of such of the employees of the local authorities for which he or she is manager as may be appropriate having regard to the business to be transacted at that meeting.

(4) Without prejudice to section 154 , in this section “manager” includes an employee to whom the functions of the manager stand delegated in accordance with that section in respect of the local authority in question.

Legal proceedings.

153.—(1) The manager for a local authority—

(a) shall act for and on behalf of the local authority in every action or other legal proceeding whether civil or criminal, instituted by or against the local authority, and

(b) may do all such acts, matters, and things as he or she may consider necessary for the preparation and prosecution or defence of such action or other proceeding in the same manner in all respects as if (as the case may require) he or she were the plaintiff, prosecutor, defendant or other party to that action or other proceeding.

(2) Where an action or other proceeding relates to the exercise or performance by the local authority of a reserved function, the manager for that authority shall, in the doing of any such act, matter, or thing referred to in subsection (1), act with the express authorisation of the elected council of such local authority, and in any proceedings such authorisation shall be deemed to have been given unless or until the contrary is shown.

Delegation of functions.

154.—(1) This section does not apply for the purposes of the appointment of a deputy manager, in respect of which section 148 applies.

(2) A manager for a local authority may by order delegate such of his or her functions as he or she thinks proper to an employee of any local authority for which he or she is manager and such person shall perform such duties as are appropriate to the functions so delegated and shall for that purpose and subject to this section act in place of the manager.

(3) Where a delegation is made under this section—

(a) the employee shall perform the delegated function under the general direction and control of the manager,

(b) the employee shall perform the delegated function in accordance with such (if any) limitations as may be specified in the delegation as to the area or period in which or the extent to which he or she is to perform that function,

(c) a provision of or under this or any other enactment which vests functions in the manager or regulates the manner in which any function is to be performed (including the making of an order under section 151 ) shall, if and in so far as it is applicable to the delegated function, have effect, for the purposes of the performance of that function by the employee, with the substitution of the employee for the manager and every such provision shall be read accordingly.

(4) Where a function is delegated under this section the function shall continue to be vested in the manager but shall be so vested concurrently with the employee to whom it is delegated and so as to be capable of being performed by either such manager or such employee.

(5) The manager may by order amend or revoke a delegation made under this section or made under any other provision repealed by this Act.

(6) Where a function is performed by an employee pursuant to a delegation under this section and any surcharge or charge subsequently falls to be made consequent on such performance in case the payment was made or authorised to be made or the loss or deficiency was caused, by the employee, the manager shall be treated as if he or she also had made or authorised the making of the payment or had caused the loss or deficiency.

(7) A delegation under this section may be made to a particular employee of a local authority or to the holder for the time being of a specified class, description or grade of employment under a local authority.

(8) Notification of a delegation under this section or of its subsequent amendment or revocation shall be given to the members of the local authority concerned.

(9) Any defect in a delegation or the absence of a delegation in respect of a function performed by an employee acting in good faith on behalf of the local authority does not of itself operate to invalidate any action or decision of the local authority.

Chapter 4

Local Authority Personnel

Definitions (Chapter 4).

155.—In this Chapter, except where the context otherwise requires—

“appropriate Minister” has the meaning given by section 156 ;

“Board” means the body established under article 4 of the Local Government Management Services Board (Establishment) Order, 1996 ( S.I. No. 410 of 1996 ), or any other body established by the Minister under section 3 of the Local Government Services (Corporate Bodies) Act, 1971 , or otherwise, to provide services similar to those of the Board;

“Local Appointments Commissioners” means commissioners appointed under section 3 of the Local Authorities (Officers and Employees) Act, 1926 ;

“local authority” includes a joint body.

Appropriate Minister.

156.—(1) In this Chapter “appropriate Minister” means—

(a) where the duties of a particular employment or employments of a particular class, description or grade relate wholly or mainly to the functions of a Minister of the Government other than the Minister, such Minister of the Government,

(b) in all other cases, the Minister.

(2) If any question or dispute arises as to whether the duties of a particular employment or employments of a particular class, description or grade relate wholly or mainly to the functions of a Minister of the Government other than the Minister, the matter shall be referred to the Minister for determination and the decision of the Minister shall be final.

(3) The appropriate Minister, may amend or revoke any declaration made or deemed to have been made or any direction given by him or her under this Chapter.

Application (Chapter 4).

157.—(1) Subject to the provisions of subsections (2) and (3), this Chapter applies to every employment under a local authority and to every employee of a local authority.

(2) (a) For the purposes of this Part, an employee of a local authority includes every person who is, immediately prior to the commencement of this section, a holder of an office under a local authority.

(b) The fact that a person is employed by a local authority on the commencement of any provision of this Chapter is not a ground for contending that such provision does not apply in relation to him or her.

(3) For the purposes of this Chapter, the following offices are deemed not to be employments under a local authority and every holder, as such, of any of those offices is deemed not to be the holder of an employment under a local authority—

(a) the office of coroner or deputy coroner under the Coroners Act, 1962 ,

(b) the offices under the Courthouses (Provision and Maintenance) Act, 1935 , of caretaker and assistant to the caretaker of courthouse accommodation,

(c) the offices under the Pounds (Provision and Maintenance) Act, 1935 , of poundkeeper and assistant to a poundkeeper.

(4) For the purpose of this Chapter, a payment to a person by virtue of section 142 (2) is not a ground for contending that the person is an employee of a local authority.

Provisions relating to the employment of persons by local authorities.

158.—(1) (a) Subject to this Chapter, Chapter 2 of this Part and the Local Authorities (Officers and Employees) Acts, 1926 to 1983, a local authority may employ such and so many persons as the local authority may, from time to time, think proper.

(b) A local authority shall determine the remuneration and conditions of employment of its employees and may, from time to time, alter the remuneration and conditions of employment of such employees.

(c) The appropriate Minister may, in relation to—

(i) any employment for which he or she is the appropriate Minister, or

(ii) such employments for which he or she is the appropriate Minister as belong to a particular class, description or grade of employments,

declare any specified age to be the age at which an employee is to cease to hold employment under a local authority.

(d) The appropriate Minister may at any time direct that any of the functions conferred on a local authority by this Chapter shall, in relation to an employment or employments for which he or she is the appropriate Minister, be exercisable either generally or in relation to a particular local authority or to specified local authorities, only with his or her consent, or subject to such other conditions or requirements as may be so directed.

(2) A local authority in exercising any function referred to in subsection (1) in relation to an employment for which the Minister is the appropriate Minister, shall, subject to paragraphs (c) and (d) of that subsection, have regard to any guidelines, codes of practice or other guidance issued by the Board in relation to such function.

(3) The functions conferred on an elected council or a Cathaoirleach by this Part, other than those referred to in sections 145(1) and 148, do not apply or extend to employees of a local authority or to the performance of any executive function in relation to such employees or their direction, supervision, service, remuneration or discipline and any resolution which claims to so apply or extend is invalid.

Staffing and organisational arrangements.

159.—(1) The manager shall for the purposes of discharging the responsibilities set out under section 149 make such staffing and organisational arrangements as may be necessary for the purposes of carrying out the functions of the local authorities for which he or she is responsible.

(2) Subject to this Part the functions of a local authority may be discharged through or by the employees of that authority or any other local authority for which the manager is responsible.

(3) An employee of a local authority shall—

(a) perform such duties as may from time to time be assigned to him or her in relation to his or her employment and as may be appropriate to any particular function of any local authority for which the manager is responsible, and

(b) carry out such instructions as may be duly given in relation to the performance of his or her duties.

(4) Where by an agreement or arrangement under Part 10 or otherwise a local authority exercises or performs a function of another body or provides a service to another body,

(a) it is the duty of every employee of the local authority to perform such duties appropriate to the nature of that function or service as the local authority may decide, and

(b) in case the other body is a local authority, it is the duty of every employee of that local authority to refrain from performing such duties appropriate to the nature of that function or service as that local authority may decide.

(5) (a) An employee of a local authority shall not engage—

(i) in any gainful occupation, other than as an employee of the local authority, to such an extent as to impair the performance of his or her duties as an employee of the local authority, or

(ii) in any occupation which might—

(I) conflict with the interests of the local authority, or

(II) be inconsistent with the discharge of his or her duties as a local authority employee.

(b) Without prejudice to the generality of paragraph (a), an employee of a local authority, the qualifications for whose post are wholly or in part professional, shall not engage in private practice in the profession in which he or she is employed by the local authority or local authorities or in any cognate profession.

(c) Where an employee of a local authority is in breach of paragraph (a) or (b), the local authority shall determine the appropriate disciplinary action to be taken, which action may include suspension with or without pay or termination of employment or such other action as the local authority considers appropriate.

(d) In considering the action to be taken under paragraph (c) a local authority may have regard to the need to uphold public confidence in the integrity of the discharge of its functions.

Qualifications for employment.

160.—(1) (a) The appropriate Minister may declare qualifications of such classes and descriptions as he or she thinks fit for a specified employment under a local authority or for such of the employments as belong to a specified class, description or grade.

(b) Before declaring under this section qualifications for any employment under a local authority to which the Local Authorities (Officers and Employees) Acts, 1926 to 1983, apply, the appropriate Minister shall consult with the Local Appointments Commissioners.

(c) A person is not to be appointed to any employment under a local authority for which qualifications are for the time being declared under this section unless he or she possesses those qualifications.

(d) For the purposes of this section, the fact that a person has been recommended by the Local Appointments Commissioners for appointment to any employment shall be conclusive evidence, in the absence of fraud, that he or she possessed at the time of such recommendation the qualifications for the time being declared under this section for such employment.

(e) Where the appropriate Minister declares under this section qualifications for a specified employment, additional qualifications for that employment are not to be fixed by a local authority without the consent of the appropriate Minister.

(2) (a) The Minister may, by order (in this section referred to as a “transfer order”), provide that declarations of qualification which would otherwise properly be made by him or her under this section for employments specified in the transfer order shall be made by the Board.

(b) Whenever a transfer order is in operation, the Board has the power to amend any qualifications previously declared by the Minister in relation to any employment to which the order relates.

(c) A transfer order shall not prejudice the right of the Minister to make or amend any qualifications declared under this section.

(d) Where the Board declares qualifications by virtue of a transfer order, such declaration has effect as if it had been made by the Minister.

(e) The revocation of a transfer order by the Minister does not affect any existing qualifications declared by the Board unless otherwise expressly provided for in the order.

(3) (a) Notwithstanding subsections (1) and (2), a local authority may, from time to time, fix qualifications for any employment provided a declaration under subsection (1) in relation to such employment is not in force.

(b) Whenever qualifications are declared under this section by the appropriate Minister, or by the Board by virtue of a transfer order, in relation to a particular employment, any qualifications previously fixed by a local authority in relation to such employment shall cease to have effect.

(4) (a) Any qualifications declared by the Board under this section may be amended or revoked by the Minister or the Board.

(b) A local authority may amend the qualifications for any employment fixed by it under subsection (3).

(5) A declaration made under section 21 of the Local Government Act, 1941 , before the commencement of this provision shall, on and from such commencement, be deemed to have been made under this section.

Restrictions on local authority employment and membership of a local authority.

161.—(1) (a) Subject to paragraph (b), a member of a local authority is not to be employed by a local authority.

(b) The Minister may by order—

(i) designate such class, description or grade of employments to which paragraph (a) does not apply,

(ii) specify such conditions under which paragraph (a) does not apply.

(2) This section comes into operation and has effect on and from the ordinary day of retirement of members next after the enactment of this Act.

(3) Where an order under this section is proposed to be made, a draft of it shall be laid before each House of the Oireachtas and the order shall not be made until a resolution approving of the draft has been passed by each House of the Oireachtas.

(4) Any order made under section 25 of the Local Elections (Petitions and Disqualifications) Act, 1974 , and in force before the commencement of this provision shall, on and from such commencement, be deemed to have been made under subsection (1) (b) and may be amended or revoked accordingly.

Modification of restriction on being employed under certain related bodies.

162.—(1) (a) In this section, “section 70(1) as applied” means section 70(1) of the Local Government Act, 1925 , as applied by section 26 of the Vocational Education Act, 1930 , as continued in operation for the purposes of such application by section 21(5) of the Local Government Act, 1955 , and as read in accordance with—

(i) section 25(6) of the Local Elections (Petitions and Disqualifications) Act, 1974 , and

(ii) section 12 of the Regional Technical Colleges (Amendment) Act, 1999 .

(b) Without prejudice to section 6 , and notwithstanding the repeal of section 70(1) of the Local Government Act, 1925 , and section 21(5) of the Local Government Act, 1955 , by this Act, section 70(1) as applied continues to have full force and effect.

(2) (a) After consultation with the Minister for the purpose of paragraph (b), the Minister for Education and Science may be order designate a class, description or grade of employments.

(b) For so long as an order under this subsection is in force, section 70(1) as applied shall not apply as regards an employment which is of a class, description or grade designated by the order.

(c) Any order made by the Minister for Education and Science under section 25(2) of the Local Elections (Petitions and Disqualifications) Act, 1974 , and in force immediately before the commencement of this subsection shall be deemed to have been made by that Minister under this subsection.

(d) After consultation with the Minister, an order under this subsection (including an order under this paragraph) may by order be amended or revoked by the Minister for Education and Science.

(3) Where an order under subsection (2) is proposed to be made, a draft of it shall be laid before each House of the Oireachtas and the order shall not be made until a resolution approving of the draft has been passed by each House of the Oireachtas.

Amendment of Local Authorities (Officers and Employees) Act, 1926.

163.Section 6 of the Local Authorities (Officers and Employees) Act, 1926 , is amended by the substitution of the following for subsection (5):

“(5) Subsection (4) of this section shall have effect subject to the proviso that where the local authority specifies a period (not less than one month) within which the person who is recommended by the Commissioners is to take up duty and notify the person of the period so specified, the local authority shall not appoint that person unless such duty is taken up within that period.”.

Amendment of Unfair Dismissals Act, 1977.

164.—Section 2(1) of the Unfair Dismissals Act, 1977 , is amended by the substitution of the following for paragraph (i):

“(i) a manager for a local authority for the purposes of section 144 of the Local Government Act, 2001,”.

Savers (Chapter 4).

165.—(1) The Local Offices (Irish Language) Regulations, 1966 ( S.I. No. 221 of 1966 ), made under sections 13 and 19 of the Local Government Act, 1941 , shall remain in force after the commencement of the provisions repealing those sections and, by regulations made by the appropriate Minister by virtue of this subsection, may be amended to the same extent as provided for by those sections or may be revoked.

(2) Every declaration made under section 23 of the Local Government Act, 1941 , which is in force in relation to a person on the commencement of the provision repealing that section remains in force in relation to him or her after such commencement and, by declaration made by the appropriate Minister by virtue of this subsection, may be amended to the same extent as provided for by that section or may be revoked.

(3) (a) Notwithstanding the repeal of section 10 (as amended by section 12 of the Local Government Act, 1955 ) of the Local Government Act, 1941 , where an appeal under that section has been made to the appropriate Minister before such repeal, that appeal shall continue to be considered and may be determined under that section.

(b) Notwithstanding the repeal of section 26 (as amended by section 41 of the Local Government Act, 1946 ) of the Local Government Act, 1941 , where a request under that section for the consent of the appropriate Minister has been made before such repeal, that request shall continue to be considered and may be determined under those sections.

(c) In this subsection, “appropriate Minister” has the same meaning that it has in Part II of the Local Government Act, 1941 .

PART 15

Ethical Framework for the Local Government Service

Interpretation (Part 15).

166.—(1) In this Part, except where the context otherwise requires—

“actual knowledge” means actual, direct and personal knowledge as distinct from constructive, implied or imputed knowledge and includes, in relation to a fact, belief in its existence the grounds for which are such that a reasonable person who is aware of them could not doubt or disbelieve that the fact exists;

“appropriate period” means—

(a) in the case of a first declaration of a person to whom section 167 (1) applies, the period which ended 12 months up to and including the date of his or her first declaration, and

(b) in the case of subsequent declarations, the period between the date of his or her last previous declaration and the date of the next subsequent declaration;

“Commission” means the Public Offices Commission established by section 21 of the Ethics in Public Office Act, 1995 , or any body established in place of such Commission;

“connected person” means a brother, sister, parent or spouse of the person or a child of the person or of the spouse;

“declarable interest” has the meaning set out in section 175 ;

“employee”, in relation to a local authority, means an employee to whom this Part applies and, subject to subsection (2), includes a manager for a local authority unless otherwise specified;

“ethics registrar” has the meaning given by section 173 (1);

“gift” includes a gift of money or other property;

“property” means real or personal property;

“relevant code of conduct” means the National Code of Conduct for Local Authority Members or the National Code of Conduct for Local Authority Employees, which are referred to in section 169 ;

“return period” means a period not exceeding 28 days from the commencement date specified in the relevant notice issued by the ethics registrar under section 174 or such other period as may be prescribed by regulations made by the Minister under section 171 (4);

“spouse”, in relation to a person, includes a person with whom the first-mentioned person is cohabiting.

(2) For the purposes of this Part—

(a) a manager shall be deemed to be an employee of every local authority for which he or she is manager,

(b) an employee of a local authority who, by virtue of an arrangement or agreement entered into under this Act or any other enactment, is performing duties under or in respect of another local authority, shall be deemed to be also an employee of the other authority.

(3) Where any body which is a company within the meaning of section 155 of the Companies Act, 1963 , is deemed under that section to be a subsidiary of another or to be another such company's holding company, a person who is a member of the first-mentioned such company shall, for the purposes of section 171 and sections 175 to 179 be deemed also to be a member of the other company.

Application (Part 15).

167.—(1) This Part applies to—

(a) a member of a local authority,

(b) an employee of a local authority who is of a class, description or grade prescribed by regulations made by the Minister for the purposes of this Part, and

(c) any other employee or other person who is the holder of a position designated by an order made by the manager for a local authority for the purposes of this Part.

(2) This Part, other than sections 171, 175 and 178 also applies, where relevant, to any person to whom subsection (1) does not apply and—

(a) who is a member of a committee of a local authority, or

(b) whose services are being availed of by the local authority,

and a code of conduct under section 169 may contain provisions in relation to such persons.

(3) Where a person to whom this Part applies has an interest in land or an interest relating to land or any business of dealing in or developing land by reason only of the beneficial ownership of shares in a company or other body by him or her or by his or her nominee or by a connected person or a nominee of a connected person and the total nominal value of those shares does not exceed the lesser of—

(a) £10,000, or

(b) one-hundredth part of the total nominal value of either the issued share capital of the company or body or, where that capital is issued in shares of more than one class, the issued share capital of the class or classes of shares in which he or she has an interest,

the requirements of section 171 and sections 175 to 179 shall not have effect in relation to that interest or interests.

(4) Notwithstanding subsection (2), the Minister may prescribe by regulations some or all of the provisions of sections 171 and 175, as provisions which apply to a person to whom subsection (2) applies, subject to such modifications or adaptations as are necessary.

(5) (a) Part VII of the Act of 2000 shall cease to apply to—

(i) a member of a planning authority,

(ii) a member of a committee of a planning authority, and

(iii) an officer of a planning authority.

(b) A declaration given in accordance with section 147 of the Act of 2000 by—

(i) a member of a planning authority, or

(ii) an officer of a planning authority,

shall continue to apply and have effect until replaced by a declaration furnished to the ethics registrar under section 171 of this Act.

Standards of integrity.

168.—In carrying out their functions under this or any other enactment, it is the duty of every member and every employee of a local authority and of every member of every committee to maintain proper standards of integrity, conduct and concern for the public interest.

Codes of conduct for Local Government Service.

169.—(1) (a) After consultation with the Commission and the Minister for Finance, the Minister, may issue codes of conduct for the guidance of members of local authorities and of employees of local authorities.

(b) A code of conduct shall deal with the conduct and standards of integrity of members and employees in performing their functions or in relation to any other matter connected with this Part.

(c) In addition to the matters provided for by paragraph (b), a code of conduct shall also deal with matters which, in the opinion of the Minister, will help to uphold public confidence in the integrity of the discharge of local authority functions.

(d) Codes to which this section relate shall be known as the National Code of Conduct for Local Authority Members and the National Code of Conduct for Local Authority Employees or by such other name as the Minister may decide from time to time.

(2) The Minister may at any time review a code of conduct and may amend the code of conduct or withdraw it and issue a new code of conduct.

(3) (a) Each member shall have regard to and be guided by the relevant code of conduct in the exercise of his or her functions.

(b) Each employee shall, in so far as the code of conduct applies to that employee, have regard to and be guided by the code of conduct in the exercise of his or her functions.

(c) There shall be deemed to be included in the terms and conditions of employment of an employee an undertaking by him or her to have regard to and be guided by the code of conduct in the exercise of his or her functions.

(4) (a) (i) As soon as practicable after the election or co-option of a person as a member of a local authority, the ethics registrar shall supply to each such member a copy of the National Code of Conduct for Local Authority Members.

(ii) The notice issued by the ethics registrar under section 174 shall draw the member's attention to the code of conduct and to subsection (3)(a).

(b) (i) The ethics registrar shall supply to each employee, as soon as practicable, a copy of the National Code of Conduct for Local Authority Employees.

(ii) The notice issued by the ethics registrar under section 174 shall draw the employee's attention to the code of conduct and to subsection (3)(b) and (c).

(5) (a) A court may have regard to a code of conduct issued under this section in any proceedings for an offence under this Part.

(b) The Commission may have regard to a code of conduct issued under this section in the carrying out of its functions in relation to a local authority.

(6) A code of conduct adopted by a planning authority under section 150 of the Act of 2000 shall continue to apply and have effect until replaced by a code of conduct issued under this section.

Prohibition of favours, rewards, etc.

170.—(1) An employee or a member of a local authority or of a committee of a local authority shall not seek, exact or accept from any person, other than from the local authority concerned, any remuneration, fee, reward or other favour for anything done or not done by virtue of his or her employment or office, and a code of conduct under section 169 may include guidance for the purposes of this subsection.

(2) Subsection (1) shall not be read so as to exclude the persons to whom that subsection relates from the application of the Prevention of Corruption Acts, 1889 to 1995, and any Act which is to be construed together as one with those Acts.

Annual declaration.

171.—(1) It is the duty of a person to whom section 167 (1) applies to prepare and furnish to the ethics registrar in accordance with subsection (2) or (3), as the case may be, an annual written declaration (in this Part referred to as an “annual declaration” or “declaration”, as the case may be), in the form prescribed by regulations made by the Minister, signed and dated by him or her and containing—

(a) particulars of his or her declarable interests (within the meaning of section 175 ), and

(b) an undertaking by him or her to have regard to and be guided by the relevant code of conduct in the exercise of his or her functions.

(2) Each member of a local authority shall prepare and furnish to the ethics registrar within the return period each year, an annual declaration and a statement that none of the grounds for disqualification referred to in section 13 or 182, or under section 20 of the Local Elections (Disclosure of Donations and Expenditure) Act, 1999 , apply.

(3) Each employee of a local authority shall prepare and furnish to the ethics registrar within the return period each year an annual declaration.

(4) The Minister may notwithstanding the definition of return period in section 166 prescribe by regulations a different commencement date or a different return period to the commencement dates or periods referred to in the definition of return period as the commencement date or period from or within which a declaration shall be furnished.

(5) It shall not be necessary to specify in an annual declaration under this section the amount or monetary value of any declarable interest within the meaning of section 175 .

Public register of interests.

172.—(1) The ethics registrar shall for the purposes of this Part, keep on behalf of the local authority concerned a public register which comprises of 2 parts, one containing members' interests and the other the interests of employees and persons referred to in section 167 (2) (which register of interests is in this section referred to as the “register of interests”).

(2) There shall be entered in the register of interests the particulars contained in declarations under section 171 or disclosures under sections 177 to 179 furnished to the ethics registrar.

(3) (a) The register of interests shall be kept at the offices of the local authority concerned, and shall be available for public inspection during normal office hours and any person may apply for a copy of the register or any entry in the register.

(b) A copy of the register of interests, or any entry in the register may be obtained by any person on the payment to the local authority concerned of such fee (if any) as the local authority shall fix not exceeding the reasonable cost of making the copy.

(4) Where a person ceases to be a person to whom section 167 applies, any particulars entered in the register of interests as a result of a declaration or disclosure being furnished to the relevant ethics registrar under this Part shall be removed from that register by the relevant ethics registrar as soon as may be after the expiration of the period of 15 years beginning on the day on which the person ceases to be such a person.

Ethics registrar.

173.—(1) In this Part “ethics registrar” means a person or persons assigned by order of the manager for a local authority to perform the duties of an ethics registrar in accordance with this Part in respect of such authority or authorities as are specified in the order.

(2) No person shall perform the functions of an ethics registrar for a continuous period exceeding 2 years.

Duty of ethics registrar, etc.

174.—(1) (a) It is the duty of the ethics registrar to issue to each member of the local authority concerned before every annual meeting of the authority, or such other time as may be prescribed by regulations made by the Minister, a signed and dated notice in writing informing the member of the requirement imposed on him or her under section 171 to prepare and furnish an annual declaration and such notice shall enclose the form so prescribed for that purpose.

(b) The fact of the issue of a notice under paragraph (a) shall be brought to the attention of the members of the local authority at the next meeting of the authority after such issue.

(2) In respect of and to each employee referred to in section 167 (1) it is the duty of the ethics registrar to issue every year in the month of January, or such other time as may be prescribed by regulations made by the Minister, a signed and dated notice in writing informing the employee of the requirement imposed on him or her under section 171 to prepare and furnish an annual declaration and such notice shall enclose the form so prescribed for that purpose.

(3) It is the duty of the ethics registrar to issue, as soon as practicable, to a person who becomes a person to whom section 167 (1) applies subsequent to the issue of a notice under subsection (1) or (2) a signed and dated notice in writing informing such member or employee, as the case may be, of the requirement imposed on him or her under section 171 to prepare and furnish an annual declaration in the form prescribed by regulations made by the Minister and such notice shall enclose the form prescribed for that purpose.

(4) Nothing in this section, including the non-receipt, for any reason, of a notice or form affects the requirement imposed on a person under section 171 to complete and furnish an annual declaration.

(5) Where the ethics registrar finds a minor error or omission in a declaration, he or she shall furnish to the person concerned particulars in writing of the error or omission, as the case may be, and the ethics registrar shall inform such person that he or she may correct the error or make good the omission within the period of 21 days from the date on which the notification issued to such person.

(6) Notwithstanding section 169 (4) the ethics registrar may at any time where he or she considers it necessary issue a notice or otherwise bring to the attention of any person referred to in section 167 the appropriate requirements of this Part, including of a relevant code of conduct issued under section 169 .

(7) Where the ethics registrar, or the manager in relation to paragraph (c), becomes aware of a possible contravention of this Part it is his or her duty to bring the matter to the attention of—

(a) the manager for the local authority, in case the matter relates to any other employee,

(b) the Cathaoirleach of the local authority, in case the matter relates to the manager,

(c) the Cathaoirleach of the local authority, in case the matter relates to the ethics registrar,

(d) the manager for the local authority, in case the matter relates to the Cathaoirleach,

(e) the Cathaoirleach and the manager for the local authority in case the matter relates to a member of the local authority other than the Cathaoirleach, and

(f) in any other case, the manager for the local authority.

(8) (a) The person or persons to whom the matter is brought to attention under subsection (7) shall consider what action should be taken and, without prejudice to the generality of the foregoing, the action may include—

(i) any investigative or disciplinary procedures which may be exercised in relation to the person concerned, whether under any other provision of this or any other enactment or otherwise,

(ii) referral of the matter to the Director of Public Prosecutions in accordance with subsection (1)(b) or (4)(b) of section 181 as the case may be,

(iii) any other course of action considered appropriate in the circumstances.

(b) The person or persons to whom the matter is brought to attention under subsection (7) shall—

(i) cause a report to be prepared of his or her or their joint consideration of the matter, as the case may be, and

(ii) cause such report to be sent to and be retained by the ethics registrar unless subsection (7)(c) applies, in which case such report shall be retained by the manager but only until the person concerned ceases to be the ethics registrar.

Declarable interests.

175.—Each of the following interests is a declarable interest for the purposes of this Part:

(a) any profession, business or occupation in which the person concerned is engaged or employed, whether on his or her own behalf or otherwise, and which relates to dealing in or developing land during the appropriate period;

(b) any other remunerated trade, profession, employment, vocation, or other occupation of the person concerned held by that person during the appropriate period;

(c) any estate or interest the person concerned has (subject to section 167 (3)) in land including the case where the person concerned, or any nominee of his or her, is a member of a company or other body which has an estate or interest in land and without prejudice to the foregoing an interest in land shall be deemed to include—

(i) the interest of the person in any contract entered into by him or her for the purchase or sale of land, whether or not a deposit or part payment has been made under the contract, and

(ii) the interest of the person in—

(I) any option held by him or her to purchase or sell land, whether or not any consideration has been paid for it, or

(II) land in respect of which such an option has been exercised by the person but which has not yet been conveyed to the person;

(d) any business of dealing in or developing land carried on during the appropriate period by a company or other body of which the person concerned, or any nominee of the person, is a member;

(e) a holding by the person concerned of shares in, or bonds or debentures of, or other like investments in, a particular company or other enterprise or undertaking (which does not relate to land or any business of dealing in or developing land) if the aggregate value of the holding exceeded £10,000 at any time during the appropriate period but holding does not include money in a current, deposit or other similar account with a financial institution;

(f) a directorship or shadow directorship of any company held by the person concerned at any time during the appropriate period, and in this paragraph “shadow directorship” means the position held by a person who is a shadow director for the purposes of the Companies Acts, 1963 to 1999;

(g) a gift, including foreign travel facilities, given to the person concerned during the appropriate period, but excluding—

(i) a gift given to the person by a relative of friend of the person or of his or her spouse or of a child of the person or his or her spouse for purely personal reasons only,

(ii) a gift given to the person, or gifts given to the person by the same person, during the appropriate period, as respects which the value, or the aggregate value, of the property the subject of the gift or gifts did not exceed £500 at any time during the appropriate period;

(h) property supplied or lent or a service supplied to the person concerned, once or more than once by the same person during the appropriate period, for a consideration or considerations or at a price or prices less than the commercial consideration or considerations or the commercial price or prices by more than £500 or which in the aggregate exceeded £500, other than property supplied or lent or a service supplied to the person concerned by a relative or friend of the person or of his or her spouse where such supply or loan was in the nature of a gift to the person and for personal reasons only;

(i) property supplied or lent or a service supplied to the person concerned, once or more than once by the same person during the appropriate period, free of charge if the commercial consideration or considerations or the commercial price or prices was or were more than £500, or which in the aggregate exceeded £500, other than property supplied or lent or a service supplied to the person concerned by a relative or friend of the person or of his or her spouse where such supply or loan was in the nature of a gift to the person and for personal reasons only;

(j) any contract to which the person concerned was a party or was in any other way, directly or indirectly, interested for the supply of goods or services to a local authority during the appropriate period if the value of the goods or services supplied during that period exceeded £5,000 or, in case other goods or services were supplied under such a contract to a local authority during that period, if the aggregate of their value exceeded £5,000;

(k) a remunerated position held by the person concerned as a political or public affairs lobbyist, consultant or adviser during the appropriate period;

(l) any other additional interest which may be prescribed by regulations made by the Minister;

(m) any other additional interest which is not specified in paragraphs (a) to (k) or in regulations made by the Minister under paragraph (l) which the person concerned wishes to volunteer.

Beneficial interests.

176.—(1) In respect of a resolution, motion, question or other matter which is proposed, or otherwise arises from or as regards the performance by the local authority of any of its functions under this or any other enactment, “beneficial interest” for the purposes of this Part, in relation to a person, includes an interest in respect of which—

(a) he or she or a connected person, or any nominee of his or her or of a connected person, is a member of a company or any other body which has a beneficial interest in, or which is material to, any such matter,

(b) he or she or a connected person is in a partnership with or is in the employment of a person who has a beneficial interest in, or which is material to, any such matter,

(c) he or she or a connected person is a party to any arrangement or agreement (whether or not enforceable) concerning land which relates to any such matter,

(d) he or she or a connected person in the capacity as a trustee or as a beneficiary of a trust has a beneficial interest in, or which is material to, any such matter,

(e) he or she or a connected person is acting with another person to secure or exercise control of a company which has a beneficial interest in, or which is material to any such matter.

(2) A person shall also be deemed to have a beneficial interest which has to be disclosed under this Part if he or she has actual knowledge that he or she or a connected person has a declarable interest (within the meaning of section 175 ) in, or which is material to, a resolution, motion, question or other matter which is proposed, or otherwise arises from or as regards the performance by the authority of any of its functions under this or any other enactment.

(3) A person shall not be regarded as having a beneficial interest which has to be disclosed under this Part where section 167 (3) is applicable or because of—

(a) an interest which is so remote or insignificant that it cannot be reasonably regarded as likely to influence a person in considering or discussing, or in voting on, any question with respect to the matter or in performing any function in relation to that matter,

(b) being a ratepayer or a local authority tenant and in common with other ratepayers or tenants, or

(c) any other circumstances which may be prescribed by regulations made by the Minister.

Disclosure by member of local authority of pecuniary or other beneficial interests.

177.—(1) Where at a meeting of a local authority or of any committee, joint committee or joint body of a local authority, a resolution, motion, question or other matter is proposed or otherwise arises either—

(a) as a result of any of its functions under this or any other enactment, or

(b) as regards the performance by the authority, committee, joint committee or joint body of any of its functions under this or any other enactment,

then, a member of the authority, committee, joint committee or joint body present at such meeting shall, where he or she has actual knowledge that he or she or a connected person has a pecuniary or other beneficial interest in, or which is material to, the matter—

(i) disclose the nature of his or her interest, or the fact of a connected person's interest at the meeting, and before discussion or consideration of the matter commences, and

(ii) withdraw from the meeting for so long as the matter is being discussed or considered,

and, accordingly, he or she shall take no part in the discussion or consideration of the matter and shall refrain from voting in relation to it.

(2) Where a member of a local authority, committee, joint committee or joint body of the local authority has actual knowledge that a matter is likely to arise at a meeting at which that member will not be present and which, if he or she were present, a disclosure would be required to be made under subsection (1), then that person shall in advance of such meeting make such disclosure in writing and furnish it to the ethics registrar.

(3) There shall be recorded in the minutes of any meeting referred to in subsection (1) or (2) a reference to any disclosure made for the purposes of either of those subsections and of any subsequent withdrawal from the meeting and such disclosure shall be recorded in the register of interests.

(4) A member of a local authority or of any committee, joint committee or joint body of a local authority shall neither influence nor seek to influence a decision of the authority in respect of any matter which he or she has actual knowledge that he or she or a connected person has a pecuniary or other beneficial interest in, or which is material to, any matter which is proposed, or otherwise arises from or as regards the performance by the authority of any of its functions under this or any other enactment.

Disclosure by manager for local authority of pecuniary or other beneficial interests.

178.—(1) This section applies where the manager for a local authority has actual knowledge that he or she or a connected person has a pecuniary or other beneficial interest in, or which is material to, any matter which is proposed or otherwise arises from or as regards the performance by the authority of any of its functions under this or any other enactment.

(2) The manager to whom subsection (1) relates shall comply with the following requirements:

(a) he or she shall neither influence nor seek to influence a decision of the local authority as regards the matter;

(b) he or she shall, as soon as may be, disclose in writing to the Cathaoirleach of the local authority the nature of his or her interest or the fact of a connected person's interest, and the Cathaoirleach shall furnish such written disclosure to the ethics registrar without delay.

(3) A disclosure furnished under subsection (2) shall be recorded by the ethics registrar in the register of interests.

(4) Where a function would normally be dealt with by the manager, the function shall be delegated by him or her in accordance with section 154 , after disclosure under subsection (2), to an employee.

(5) The manager shall inform the Cathaoirleach of any delegation under subsection (4).

Disclosure by employee, etc. of local authority of pecuniary or other beneficial interests.

179.—(1) This section applies where—

(a) an employee of a local authority other than the manager, or

(b) any other person whose services are being availed of by the local authority,

has actual knowledge that he or she or a connected person, has a pecuniary or other beneficial interest in, or which is material to, any matter, which is proposed or otherwise arises from or as regards the performance by the authority of any of its functions under this or any other enactment.

(2) The employee or other person to whom subsection (1) relates shall comply with the following requirements:

(a) he or she shall neither influence nor seek to influence a decision of the local authority as regards the matter;

(b) where he or she as an employee is concerned with the matter in the course of his or her duties, he or she shall disclose in writing to the manager of the local authority the nature of his or her interest or the fact of a connected person's interest and comply with any directions (including the reassignment of the matter in question to another employee) the manager may give him or her in relation to the matter;

(c) where he or she as a person whose services are being availed of by the local authority is concerned with the matter in the course of his or her duties, he or she shall disclose in writing to the manager the nature of his or her interest or the fact of a connected person's interest and comply with any directions, the manager may give him or her in relation to the matter.

(3) A disclosure to which subsection (2)(b) or (2)(c) relates shall be forwarded by the manager to the ethics registrar and recorded by him or her in the register of interests.

Application of Ethics in Public Office Act, 1995, etc.

180.—(1) In this section “the Acts” means the Ethics in Public Office Act, 1995 , and any other Act which is to be construed together as one with that Act.

(2) The Acts shall apply in relation to a local authority subject to the provisions of this section and with such other modifications as may be necessary and for that purpose—

(a) the powers of investigation and report conferred on the Commission apply in relation to a person to whom subsection (1) or (2) of section 167 relates,

(b) subsection (3) shall apply as regards a report prepared by the Commission,

(c) subsection (4) shall apply as regards the consideration of such report by a local authority.

(3) (a) Where a report prepared by the Commission relates to—

(i) a manager, it shall be furnished to the Cathaoirleach of the county council or city council concerned,

(ii) the Cathaoirleach of a local authority, it shall be furnished to the Leas-Chathaoirleach of the authority and to its manager,

(iii) any other member of a local authority, it shall be furnished to the Cathaoirleach of the authority and to its manager,

(iv) any employee of a local authority other than the manager, it shall be furnished to the manager of the local authority concerned, and

(v) any other person to whom subsection (1) or (2) of section 167 relates, it shall be furnished to the manager of the local authority concerned.

(b) Nothing in this subsection shall be read so as to prevent the furnishing of a report referred to in paragraph (a) to any other person in accordance with the Acts.

(4) (a) Where a report referred to in subparagraph (i), (ii) or (iii) of subsection (3)(a) is furnished to a local authority, it shall be considered by the elected council. The elected council shall decide on such action to be taken as may be considered appropriate in all the circumstances including, in the case of subparagraph (i) of subsection (3)(a), the exercise of powers of suspension or removal pursuant to section 146 .

(b) Where a report referred to in subparagraph (iv) or (v) of subsection (3)(a) is furnished to a local authority it shall be considered by its manager. The manager shall decide on such action to be taken as may be considered appropriate in all the circumstances including, in the case of an employee, suspension with or without pay or termination of employment.

(c) The manager shall inform the elected council of the result of a consideration under paragraph (b).

(5) Nothing in this section shall be read as prejudicing the Commission in carrying out the functions conferred on it by the Acts.

Offences (Part 15).

181.—(1) (a) Subject to subsection (3), a person is guilty of an offence where he or she fails to comply with the requirements of section 171 or who, when claiming to comply with those requirements, gives particulars which are false or which to his or her knowledge are misleading in a material respect.

(b) Proceedings for an offence under this subsection shall not be instituted except by or with the consent of the Director of Public Prosecutions.

(2) A person guilty of an offence under subsection (1) is liable—

(a) on summary conviction to a fine not exceeding £1,500 or, at the discretion of the court, to imprisonment for a term not exceeding 6 months or to both,

(b) on conviction on indictment, to a fine not exceeding £10,000 or, at the discretion of the court, to imprisonment for a term not exceeding 2 years or to both.

(3) In any proceedings for an offence under subsection (1) it is a good defence for the defendant to prove that at the relevant time he or she believed in good faith, and upon reasonable grounds, that—

(a) the relevant particulars were true,

(b) there was no matter as regards which he or she was then required to make a declaration under section 171 , or

(c) the matter in relation to which the offence is alleged was not one as regards which he or she was so required to make such declaration.

(4) (a) Subject to subsection (6), a person is guilty of an offence where he or she fails to comply with any of the requirements of section 177 , 178 or 179 or who, when claiming to comply with those requirements, gives particulars which are false or which to his or her knowledge are misleading in a material respect.

(b) Proceedings for an offence under this subsection shall not be instituted except by or with the consent of the Director of Public Prosecutions.

(5) A person guilty of an offence under subsection (4) is liable—

(a) on summary conviction to a fine not exceeding £1,500 or, at the discretion of the court, to imprisonment for a term not exceeding 6 months or to both,

(b) on conviction on indictment, to a fine not exceeding £10,000 or, at the discretion of the court, to imprisonment for a term not exceeding 2 years or to both.

(6) In any proceedings for an offence under subsection (4) it is a good defence for the defendant to prove that at the time of the alleged offence he or she did not have actual knowledge and had no reason to believe that a matter in which, or in relation to which, he or she or a connected person had a beneficial interest had arisen or had come before the local authority concerned, or was being considered by it or by a committee or joint body of the local authority, as may be appropriate, or that the beneficial interest to which the alleged offence relates was one in relation to which a requirement of section 177 , 178 or 179 applied.

(7) Summary proceedings for an offence under this Part may be brought by the local authority concerned, subject to subsection (1)(b) or (4)(b).

(8) Notwithstanding section 10(4) of the Petty Sessions (Ireland) Act, 1851, summary proceedings for an offence under this Part may be commenced—

(a) at any time within 12 months from the date on which the offence was committed,

(b) at any time within 6 months from the date on which evidence sufficient, in the opinion of the local authority by whom the proceedings are initiated, to justify the proceedings, comes to such authority's knowledge,

whichever is the later, but no such proceedings shall be initiated later than 5 years from the date on which the offence concerned was committed.

Consequences of failure to comply with sections 171, 177, 178 and 179.

182.—(1) (a) Where a person is convicted of an offence under section 181 (which relates to section 171 , 177, 178 or 179) that person is disqualified from being elected or co-opted to or from being a member of a local authority.

(b) A disqualification arising under paragraph (a) commences—

(i) where no appeal is taken against the conviction, when the time limit for taking an appeal has passed, or

(ii) where an appeal is taken against the conviction and the appeal is disallowed, from the determination of the appeal,

and the disqualification shall be for 5 years from the date of conviction or determination of the appeal, as the case may be.

(2) Where a person contravenes or fails to comply with a requirement of section 171 , 177, 178 or 179 or acts as a member of a local authority, committee, joint committee or joint body of a local authority while disqualified for membership by virtue of this section, the fact of such contravention or failure or of his or her so acting, as the case may be, does not invalidate any act or proceeding of the authority, committee, joint committee or joint body concerned.

PART 16

Land

Land disposals, notification of members.

183.—(1) The following provisions have effect in relation to any proposed disposal (not being by demise for a term not exceeding one year) of land which is held by a local authority:

(a) notices shall be sent or delivered to the members of the local authority giving particulars of—

(i) the land,

(ii) the name of the person from whom such land was acquired, if this can be ascertained by reasonable inquiries,

(iii) the person to whom the land is to be disposed of,

(iv) the consideration proposed in respect of the disposal,

(v) any covenants, conditions or agreements to have effect in connection with the disposal;

(b) at the first meeting of the local authority held after the expiration of 10 days after the day on which such notices are sent or delivered, the local authority may resolve that the disposal shall not be carried out or that it shall be carried out in accordance with terms specified in the resolution;

(c) if the local authority resolves by virtue of paragraph (b) that the disposal shall not be carried out, it shall not be carried out;

(d) if the local authority does not pass a resolution pursuant to paragraph (b), the disposal may be carried out;

(e) if the local authority resolves by virtue of paragraph (b) that the disposal shall be carried out in accordance with terms specified in the resolution, the disposal may be carried out in accordance with those terms;

(f) the disposal shall not be carried out otherwise than in accordance with paragraph (d) or (e) and subject to the consent of the Minister where consent is required under section 211(2) of the Act of 2000.

(2) Section 90 (inserted by section 26 of the Housing (Miscellaneous Provisions) Act, 1992 ) of the Housing Act, 1966 , is amended by the substitution of the following for subsection (4):

“(4) (a) Subject to any regulations made under this section, section 183 of the Local Government Act, 2001, shall apply in relation to the sale of a dwelling under subparagraph (ii) or (iii) of paragraph (a), or paragraph (b), of subsection (1) of this section but shall not otherwise apply to the sale of a dwelling under this section.

(b) This subsection is without prejudice to the application of section 183 of the Local Government Act, 2001, to the disposal of land by a housing authority under section 211 of the Planning and Development Act, 2000 , and for the purposes of this paragraph ‘land’ does not include a dwelling.”.

Exercise of certain land functions.

184.—(1) Without prejudice to the generality or application of section 210, 211 or 213 of the Act of 2000, the functions conferred on a local authority by section 11 (7)(a) shall—

(a) as regards the acquisition of land be construed in accordance with section 213 of the Act of 2000,

(b) as regards the disposal of land be construed in accordance with section 211 of the Act of 2000,

and section 210 of the Act of 2000 shall apply as regards the appropriation of land.