The proposed legislation that will enable the direct election of a mayor of Limerick next year has been published.
The bill also makes provision for other local-authority areas to hold plebiscites on whether or not to directly elect a mayor.
The Government last week approved the publication of the Local Government (Mayor of Limerick) Bill 2023.
It has also decided to hold the Limerick mayoral election on the same date as the local and European elections, which will be held between 6 June and 9 June next year.
Kieran O’Donnell (Minister of State for Planning and Local Government) described the publication of the bill as “a major milestone in allowing the people of Limerick City and County to directly elect a mayor with significant powers”.
The bill transfers a number of functions to the mayor and sets up supporting structures within the local authority.
Under the bill, the mayor’s term of office will be five years, and the person elected can serve up to two full terms.
It provides that the mayor will be an ex officio member of Limerick City and County Council and can attend, speak and vote at council meetings, with some limited exceptions, and may be questioned by the elected members in relation to the performance of his or her functions.
The bill also sets out the circumstances under which the mayor can be removed from office.
The new mayor will also be able to appoint a special advisor with “relevant experience and expertise”.