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‘Practical, Hard-Working and Honest’ – Tributes Paid to Outgoing Councillor, Aidan Lombard

Cork County Council staff and all councillors within the Carrigaline Municipal District (MD) have paid tribute to Carrigaline MD Chairperson, Councillor Aidan Lombard (FG), who has announced that he is stepping away from local politics with almost immediate effect.

Cllr Lombard delivered the news at this month’s meeting of the MD, having announced his intention to stand down at a parliamentary party meeting last week. Aidan began his political career when he was co-opted into a seat on the Bandon-Kinsale MD five years ago, following the election of his brother, Tim Lombard, to the Seanad.

At the time, the Bandon-Kinsale boundary extended to incorporate Crosshaven, Ballinhassig, Ballygarvan and South Carrigaline, with Cllr Lombard proving to be a regular point of contact for residents in all areas.

In May 2019, Aidan received his first electoral mandate after he was elected on the first count in the newly drawn Carrigaline Local Electoral Area (LEA). Nearly two years on and having been elected Chair of the MD, Cllr Lombard has decided to step away from local politics, citing work commitments.

Tributes poured in at Monday’s meeting, with Council staff and fellow Councillors paying homage to Aidan’s public service over the past 5 years. A number of local representatives noted their admiration for the style and practicality of how Cllr Lombard operates in his role, with warm words also added over his honesty and hard-working nature.

Commenting on his announcement, Cllr Lombard indicated that while it was a tough decision, he felt that he could no longer give his all in his role as a councillor due to other work commitments. “I was managing it for the first four years but for the last nine months or so I’ve found it just impossible. I really enjoy the Council and I’m going to miss it, but I just can’t juggle it…. It’s a pity the way that the Council has gone the way it has, where the two can’t be done (full time job and role as a councillor), but that’s how I found it and regretfully I’ll be leaving you in two or three weeks’ time”.

Unfortunately, the requirements and commitments involved with being a local councillor continue to grow, particularly given the impact of social media in today’s society. As highlighted by the independent Moorhead Report that published its findings last year, the reality of the job does not match the current job description and it is becoming increasingly difficult for those with full-time day jobs to hold a position on a local council.

It is a sad moment for the Carrigaline MD to lose such a unique voice in local politics but all that is left to say is that we wish Aidan and his young family well and thank him for his service.

Best of luck in the future Aidan.

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