Cllr Sarah O'Reilly of Aontú.

Cllrs clash in motion commotion

Tensions spilled over at the latest meeting of Cavan County Council when the status of an agenda item was debated.

Aontú’s Sarah O’Reilly questioned why some councillors seem to have more items on the agenda than the agreed limit of three.

She made the remark while singling out a rolling agenda item by Kingscourt’s Clifford Kelly which reads: ‘That Cavan County Council provide an update on the North South Interconnector’.

First proposed back in 2020, the item has appeared every month since, and Cllr O’Reilly queried why it did not count in Cllr Kelly’s limit of three motions.

At the October meeting Cllr Kelly had motions tabled in respect of water connection fees, another on group water schemes, and lastly on a motion that read ‘Bins and street cleaning in the county’.

He also had his name attached to a motion put forward by Cllr O’Reilly herself, on which she allowed other Cootehill-Bailieborough MD members to attach their names. That motion was to discuss a ‘proposed Direct Provision Centre in Cavan’.

On foot of hearing her objection, Cllr Kelly immediately sought to clarify that the agenda item was a “report”, and not a motion. He further stated that the delivery of said “report” was agreed back in 2020, after it was both proposed and seconded.

“It was agreed to put on the agenda and always get a reply because of the seriousness of the situation affecting the people of Kingscourt, Muff and Coronea,” he said.

Cllr Kelly denied that he had more than three motions on the agenda, claiming the joint motion regarding direct provision had come from the “full group of the MD”.

Cllr O’Reilly countered that, if the interconnector item was to remain on the agenda having been agreed by the full council, then it should be “in all our names” and not just Cllr Kelly’s.

Despite strong objection voiced by Cllr Kelly, Cathaoirleach Philip Brady stated it was “something we’ll have to look at going forward”.

“I will forfeit the motion in future,” conceded a disgruntled Cllr Kelly.