Constituency Review Submission from Tony Killeen
Submission ID: S540
Clare, Limerick City
Besides observing the relevant provisions of the Constitution the Commission is to have regard to a number of guidelines.
2c. ‘the breaching of county boundaries shall be avoided as far as practicable’.
2f. ……. ‘the Commission shall endeavour to maintain continuity in relation to the arrangement of constituencies’.
For a period up to 2016 the Ballyglass DED was included with the Limerick City Constituency before reverting to Clare. During that era the question of extending the Limerick City Council boundary into that area of Clare was a live issue. However, the Limerick Boundary Report in 2010 and the subsequent amalgamation of Limerick City and County Councils resolved that matter. In so far as the City boundary consideration may have influenced the decisions of previous Commissions it is clear that it ought not be of import on this occasion. In that situation the case for the ‘continuity’ envisaged in 2f. is particularly strong.
In my experience the participation of a large swathe of the electorate in a particular area in any election can be negatively impacted if the area in question does not have a sufficient population to give it a realistic hope of electing a TD.
2e. ‘there shall be regard to geographic considerations including significant physical features…..’
The fact that Co. Clare is cut significantly cut off to the South and East by the Shannon Estuary, the River Shannon and Lough Derg suggests that any boundary alteration that might be considered ought to be to the North (as in the 1969 – 1981 period) to comply with 2e.