[Sinn Fein]

1 January 2001

Local Government Minister could undermine local democracy if he axes Dublin City Council over bin charges

Sinn Fein has warned Environment and Local Government Minister Noel Dempsey that he risks undermining voters' faith in local democracy if he axes Dublin City Council later this month because it refuses to introduce bin collection charges.

The Minister is thinking about suspending the City Council because it refused to introduce bin collection charges as part of the Estimates just before Christmas.

Sinn Fein Dublin Central Councillor Nicky Kehoe said:

``Will the Local Government Minister start the New Year by rubbishing local democracy by abolishing a local authority because elected councillors kept their promises to voters?

``Will the Minister - with the backing of Bertie Ahern and Mary Harney - pull the plug on local politics by dissolving the democratically-elected Dublin City Council?

``If he does, is it any that wonder people are becoming increasingly disillusioned with politics when Government ministers threaten to reject local democracy because it won't dance to their tune?''  ENDS

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