New Mayor looking forward to a year of trying to help the county

by Sylvia Pownall
Fingal's new Mayor Anthony Lavin and Deputy Mayor Grainne Maguire

Housing, MetroLink and the development of Dublin Airport are three key areas incoming Mayor of Fingal Anthony Lavin hopes to influence during his term of office.

Cllr Lavin (FG) was elected Mayor at the annual meeting of Fingal County Council last Friday, with Cllr Grainne Maguire (Ind) elected Deputy Mayor.

Cllr Lavin, who lives in Malahide, defeated Cllr Paul Mulville (SD) and Cllr Sandra Kavanagh (Solidarity) while Cllr Maguire defeated Cllr Lorna Nolan (Ind) in the chamber vote for Deputy Mayor.

Cllr Lavin, who represents the Howth-Malahide Electoral Area, has been a member of Fingal County Council since 2011. He is originally from Swinford, Co Mayo and is a customer care manager with AXA Insurance.

After the AGM he told Dublin Gazette: “Obviously, the issue of people being able to buy a house they can afford is a big one. I hope to support the local authority in the supply of more housing.

“For older people, assisted housing or step-down housing also needs to be looked at – where there are people living in larger houses who want to stay in the same community but wouldn’t necessarily want to remain living in a large house.”

Cllr Lavin said he hoped to see Fingal continue to promote itself as a place to do business and said industrial sites across the north county, including Stephenstown in Balbriggan, had the potential to draw overseas investment and create jobs.

He also said he looked forward to supporting his local area of Portmarnock, Malahide and Kinsealy and noted that the completion of the long-awaited Casino project during his tenure would be “a very special one for me”.

Cllr Maguire, who represents the Balbriggan electoral area, has been an elected representative for the past 10 years and succeeded her mother, May McKeon, who served on the council for almost 40 years, in 2013.

Tributes were paid to outgoing Mayor Cllr Mary McCamley (Lab) who was presented with a commemorative medal and a photo album recording her year in office.

Cllr McCamley listed meeting Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, signing off on a historic €70 million loan agreement with the European Investment Bank, and a visit to Chengdu in China among the highlights of her year.

She added: “I have discovered such beautiful places in Fingal that this time last year I knew nothing about. It has been enlightening getting to know the county.”

The outgoing Mayor was overcome with emotion as she stood down – to a standing ovation and applause from both councillors and officials alike.

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