Archive for the 'Local Elections' Category

Bad election for the Green Party – Bad election for Ireland

While I am a bit down about my own result and that of my party nationally it must be put in perspective. Most people simply do not understand how important environmental issues are going to be over the coming years, including within the next five years of the local government term. In particular our media do not seem to have a clue.  In choosing to effectively exclude the Green Party from local Government for the next five years, the Irish electorate has demonstrated that it is far more interested in giving out and looking backwards, rather than planning for a safe future for us all, and this is a decision that the electorate will come to rue.  The only hope is that we stick at what we are doing in Government, putting the building blocks in place for us to deal with what is coming over the years ahead, and that in the next few years the Irish electorate, and the Irish media who have been dreadful over the past few years, start to understand what is really happening on our planet.  We have to get away from our obsession with money and economics (witness George Lee’s huge vote) and realise that economics is just one pillar of good decision making, with the environmental and social pillars having equal importance.  Unfortunately the electorate has all but eliminated those who understand the importance of the environmental pillar from local government, and largely replaced them with people who have limited understanding of any of the three pillars.  A sad day for the future of this country.

Cllr. Donnelly’s response to the disgraceful article in today’s Irish Examiner from the Port of Cork

There is an article on page 8 of today’s Irish Examiner by Sean O’Riordan, with comments from Capt. Michael McCarthy of the Port of Cork, which can be described as nothing less than scurrilous and pure propaganda.  For a journalist of Sean O’Riordan’s standing to put his name to a diatribe like this shows that there is no such thing as journalism any more, just propaganda and spin.  For Sean O’Riordan not to give either Dan Boyle or myself a right to respond to the completely false allegations against us personally and against the Green Party contained in the article, and for the article to appear in the paper on polling day when there is no time for a right of reply shows a complete lack of any journalistic ethic by either Sean O’Riordan or his editors.

As for the Port of Cork getting involved so overtly politically, this is not surprising, as their senior management and board are riddled with political appointees.  Previously I would have considered Michael McCarthy a gentleman.  I clearly gave the man too much credit.  For him to misconstue in this way what the Green Party, through Dan Boyle and myself, has said and done with regard to Cork Harbour and the Port of Cork, is to show that this article is purely an attempt at political manipulation by the Port, and the article has no basis in fact.

I will finish by saying that I hope people are not taken in by this rant from the Port of Cork.  For the record there are links below to both my written and oral statements to An Bord Pleanala on the Port of Cork’s application to move their container terminal to Ringaskiddy last year.  These clearly outline that while I did vehemently oppose the port’s proposal, I am not in any way anti-port or anti-trade.  In fact within my oral submission I argue that in the long term this move would make the region less competitive, as the port would quite simply be located in the wrong place in the harbour.  I sincerely believe that if this move goes ahead, it will prove in the long term to be detrimental to Irish trade and local industry.  The Green Party’s proposals for the development of tourism infrastructure in Cork Harbour are not in any way anti-port or anti-trade.

Dominick’s written submission to An Bord Pleanala about Port of Cork’s proposal to move their container terminal to Ringaskiddy:

Dominick’s oral submission to An Bord Pleanala oral hearing for the Port of Cork’s proposal to move their container terminal to Ringaskiddy:

Cllr. Donnelly urges last minute voters to get on the register

13th May 2009

Local Green Party candidate Cllr. Dominick Donnelly has urged voters to get on the supplementary register before it closes this Friday, 15th May. The supplementary register will allow those eligible to vote in the upcoming local, European and bye-elections if they are not currently included on the electoral register.

Cllr. Donnelly said: “Every vote counts, so it’s crucial that those eligible get on the register and exercise their democratic right to vote.  As a secondary school teacher, I know that there are many students who have recently turned 18, but are not yet registered to vote.  If they want to use their vote for the first time, they must get registered in the next few days. To get on the supplementary register, you must get a registration form stamped by the Gardai and submit it to Cork County Council by 5pm this Friday.

“If you come from another EU country, as long as you’re not voting back home you can vote in the European elections. If you’re from outside the EU you can vote in the local elections. I’d urge everyone to look at the Citizen’s Information Service website, to get the full details on how to make sure that their voice is heard. You can get application forms from there or on  If you’re not sure if you are registered to vote you can access the register on   before you submit an application,” continued Cllr. Donnelly.

Cllr Donnelly concluded: “The Green Party wants every voter to get the opportunity to choose who will represent them locally and in Europe.”

Cllr. Donnelly calls for directly elected mayor for County Cork

13 May 2009

Cork County Council should follow Dublin’s lead and elect a powerful mayor

Green Party county council candidate and former Mayor of Passage West, Cllr. Dominick Donnelly has said that people in County Cork would benefit from a powerful directly elected mayor with powers to direct transport, planning and other local services.

Following the announcement by Minister for Local Government John Gormley that Dubliners will be voting for a mayor with a range of new powers next summer, Cllr. Donnelly said: “Our county deserves a mayor with real powers, elected by the people – and answerable to them. We would benefit from an elected mayor that could better steer policies to create jobs and improve local services in our area.  I hope that Dublin is just a starting point for powerful mayors and I encourage people to support my campaign for a directly elected mayor for County Cork.”

“The green paper on local government reform, published by Minister Gormley last April, was in favour of directly elected mayors in cities and counties. It also recommended that the democratic policy making function of local government would be strengthened by giving important powers of initiation – budgets, development plans etc, to the mayor.  I hope that the forthcoming white paper which is due to be published soon will support this recommendation and I ask people to give me their support so I can convince John Gormley that County Cork needs a directly elected mayor,” concluded Cllr. Donnelly.


More details on Minister Gormley’s announcement can be found at:

The government’s green paper on local government reform can be accessed at:

Any posters erected before midnight should all receive fines of €150 each say Cork Greens

5th May 2009  11 pm

The Cork Green Party has expressed its absolute disgust at all the many candidates who have broken the law and started putting up their election posters before midnight of Tuesday night.  As of Tuesday evening there are countless posters around the city area, from members of all the main parties except the Green Party.

On behalf of his Green Party colleagues, Cllr. Dominick Donnelly said:  “Any candidate who started putting up their posters before midnight on Tuesday has shown a complete disregard for the law, and is therefore not fit to be elected.  The Department of the Environment, Heritage and Local Government issued very clear instructions to all parties as to the rules around postering.  I have witnessed European election posters up well before midnight for Fine Gael (the so-called Law and Order party) candidates Sean Kelly and Colm Burke, Labour candidate Alan Kelly, Sinn Fein candidate Toireasa Ferris and independent candidate Kathy Synnott, as well as for local election candidates Seamus McGrath (Fianna Fail), Tim Lombard (Fine Gael) and Donncha O Laoghaire (Sinn Fein).  Cork City and County Councils must act on this, and must be seen to act on this.  Otherwise these cheats are just making a mockery of the law, and thereby the electorate, and they are clearly not fit for public office,” Cllr. Donnelly said.

“The City and County Councils must impose the fines of €150 for each poster.  To do otherwise would be negligent in the extreme, and would open the door to future gross neglect of the litter laws.  I have a number of photographs of posters taken before midnight on Tuesday, which will all be sent in to the relevant local authority, and I ask any members of the public with similar evidence to do likewise.  Each and all of the offences should be pursued, and the fines imposed should form part of the candidates official election expenditure.  In sport, if someone starts a race early they get disqualified, or at least a heavy penalty.  The same should apply to candidates who cannot abide by a very simple rule” Cllr. Donnelly concluded.


Cllr. Dominick Donnelly (Carrigaline area of Cork County Council and Passage West Town Council), on behalf of fellow Green Party candidates Mick Murphy (Cork City South West), Mary Ryder (Cork City South Central), Stephen Crowley (Cork City South East) and Mark Collins (Macroom area of Cork County Council).

Cllr. Donnelly urges council authorities to be strict on illegal posters

30th April 2009

Candidates that erect early should be fined, say Greens

The Green Party’s candidate for the Carrigaline electoral area of Cork County Council and for Passage West Town Council, Cllr. Dominick Donnelly, today urged the council authorities to be vigilant about candidates that illegally put up their election posters early.

The Environment Minister John Gormley recently issued a reminder to all candidates participating in the upcoming local and European elections that posters may not be erected any earlier than 6th May, which is 30 days before the polling date of June 5th. His department has also written to local authorities and political parties reminding them of their responsibilities.

“It is within the council’s authority to issues on-the-spot litter fines to any candidate in breach of the time limits, either before or after the election, and I would urge them to do so if they find any posters up before the 6th May,” Cllr. Donnelly said.

“Litter is a problem in the community and so is visual pollution. Election candidates are permitted to put up posters for a 30 day period before polling day in order to inform the public about the candidates standing for office. Those who abuse this right should be dealt with firmly.  Candidates and their election teams should also be mindful not to erect posters in locations that might impact on the line of sight of road users,”  Cllr. Donnelly added.

“While posters advertising public meetings are permitted, any members of the public that see election posters up early should contact Cork County Council on (021) 4276891.”

Cllr. Donnelly welcomes Gormley’s decision to scrap e-voting machines

23 April 2009

Getting rid of failed voting devices only sensible course of action

The Green Party’s representative in the Carrigaline electoral area has welcome the announcement that Environment Minister John Gormley is to scrap the e-voting machines, that have so far cost the country €51m.

Cllr. Dominick Donnelly, who is running for election to both Cork County Council and Passage West Town Council said: “The last government made a substantial investment of taxpayers’ money in purchasing the machines and subsequently storing them, since the Greens entered government John Gormley has worked to find the best outcome for taxpayers.

“He reduced storage costs from €706,000 in 2006 to €204,000 last year, while at the same as investigating whether it was possible to get the machines working.

“In principle, the idea of e-voting is a good one, but voting is such an important activity that it must be totally above board and free from manipulation or error. There was no way these e-voting machines could guarantee that without further substantial investment, so the only option is to dispose of the machines.

“This is ‘a legacy issue’ based on decisions taken mainly by the 1997-2002 FF-PD government, but the opposition were also enthusiastic backers of electronic voting – with Fine Gael’s John Bruton and Labour’s Ruairi Quinn very vocal in their support.

“A taskforce will now be established to work out how the storage arrangements can be terminated and the machines disposed while returning to the taxpayers as much money as possible, The Environment Minister has taken decision action on this – in the interests both of the taxpayer and the democratic system,” Cllr. Donnelly concluded. 

Local election spending limits commence today

7 April 2009

Local Green Party candidate Cllr. Dominick Donnelly has welcomed the introduction of Local Election spending limits announced by Green Party Leader and Minister for Local Government John Gormley. From today, each candidate must record the cost of everything they use in their campaign, including posters, leaflets, merchandise and advertising.

Cllr. Donnelly said: “It is in everybody’s interest that there should be clear and reasonable spending limits as this ensures a level playing field for all candidates and the most democratic outcome. In the competitive atmosphere at an election, parties and candidates can be drawn into a spiral of competitive spending which can serve no real purpose other than to run the risk of needless increased expenditure.”

For the Carrigaline area of Cork County Council a limit of €15,000 will apply. Spending amounts are calculated on a sliding scale based on population, with a top limit of €15,000 to apply in the most populated areas. Due to their different administrative responsibilities, a standard spending limit of €7,500 will apply to all 80 borough and town councils.  

Cllr. Donnelly said: “I also welcome stricter controls on election posters. The time period during which candidates can exhibit election posters has now been clarified – Local and European election candidates can only erect posters from 6th May, which is 30 days before the polling date.  All posters must be removed by 12 June.

“For those who are not registered to vote, there is still time,” said Cllr Donnelly. “You can apply for entry in the Supplement to the register of electors by filling out a form available from City and County Councils, from Garda Stations, Libraries, Post Offices and on-line at The final date for the receipt of completed supplement application forms by City and County Councils is Monday 18th May 2009.”

Minister John Gormley has made an order appointing Friday 5 June 2009 as the Local Election polling day. Stations will open between 7am and 10pm.

Fine Gael will struggle to take three seats in Carrigaline electoral area, says Cllr. Donnelly

5th March 2009


Cllr. Donnelly is confident of being the first Green Party member of Cork County Council

Commenting on the recent defection of local councillor Deirdre Forde from Fianna Fail to Fine Gael, Green Party candidate for the Carrigaline area of Cork County Council and Passage West Town Council, Cllr. Dominick Donnelly said:  “It comes as no surprise to me that Cllr. Forde has abandoned Fianna Fail and gone over to Fine Gael in a desperate attempt to hold her seat.  However, even with three sitting councillors contesting, I really do not see Fine Gael taking three of the six seats in the Carrigaline electoral area.  I expect that either Councillor Forde, or one of her new party running mates, Cllrs. Lombard or Collins, will not hold their seat in June.”

Cllr. Donnelly continued:  “I have been out on the doors around the area for the past few weeks, and I am getting a very positive reception.  I fully expect to take one of the seats in the Carrigaline area in June, and become the first Green Party member of Cork County Council.  I was only about 150 votes short of taking a seat in 2004 on my first time out, and am confident of taking the seat this time around.  Cork County Council, which it must be remembered has been dominated by Fine Gael for over a decade, is in dire need of positive green thinking to prepare the county for what is coming in the future.”

Cllr Dominick Donnelly welcomes reduced spending limits in upcoming elections

10 February 2009

Lower campaign spending is sensible and makes for better politics

The Green Party’s candidate for the Carrigaline electoral area of Cork County Council and Passage West Town Council, Cllr. Dominick Donnelly, has welcomed the introduction for the first time ever of limits on the amount of money that candidates can spend in the forthcoming local election campaign. He also welcomed the announcement today by Green Minister for Local Government John Gormley that there will be a new 60 day time period during which the limits apply, which is twice as long as the period that applied during the 2007 Dáil election campaign.

Cllr. Donnelly said: “Lower spending by candidates during the forthcoming election campaign is a no brainer. In a time of deep economic turmoil, less spending equals less financial waste. It also makes for better politics, by levelling the playing field for all election candidates and reducing the influence of vested interest in the political system. The days of candidates spending nearly €40,000 to get elected to local councils is over. The limits are not unreasonably restrictive but they will curb the excesses seen in recent elections.

“Candidates standing for election on Friday 5 June in the Carrigaline area of Cork County Council will be able to spend a maximum of €15,000, although I expect that most will spend considerably less than that.

“I also welcome the publication of a study which presents options on: the establishment of an Electoral Commission in Ireland that will take over the functions of the Standards in Public Office Commission; organising the electoral register; constituency revisions; the funding of the political system; how elections and referenda are run; the modernisation of electoral law; the registration of political parties; and research and awareness activities.

“The announcements made today are sensible, progressive and important components of the Green Party’s ongoing programme of political reform. I look forward to the forthcoming publication of John Gormley’s white paper on local government reform, which will redefine how politics operates in our communities, and will bring power closer to the people. One of the founding principles of the Green Party is that political, social and economic decisions should be taken at the lowest effective level. We are making good progress towards the realisation of that principle,” Cllr. Donnelly concluded.

Photos of Dominick

May 2023