SINN Féin’s Breda Brennan was elected as Metropolitan Mayor as we went to press. The City South Councillor pledged to a year of “tireless work” in the post, in which she intends to “promote all of Waterford and all it has to offer”.
Sounding a cautionary note, Mayor Brennan stated: “High levels of unemployment, the need for a University for the region, the development of the Airport, the expansion of the North Quays and the vital requirement for 24/7 emergency cardiac care at University Hospital Waterford must be delivered by all of us working together.
“We must refocus, regroup and work together for the betterment of all of the people of the South East. The addition of the second Cath Lab represents progress but it cannot stop there. I will champion all of these issues and more in the year ahead.”
Pledging to “put young people front and centre during her term”, Mayor Brennan said that Waterford’s youth “must have a stake in the development of our city. We must listen to our young people more and especially in the content of formulating development plans.
“There are many more groups I intend to work with over the coming year. From those who advocate for carers, community and voluntary groups and sporting groups from across the city – I will do my best to be a voice for you all… I look forward to the challenges the time ahead will bring.”
Housing proved the issue most regularly raised on the doorsteps during the election campaign, said Mayor Brennan. “In every shape or form, be it substandard housing, overcrowding, medical issues, transfers, the lack of affordable quality social housing, it was brought up every single day,” she said. “It just shows how significant an issue and how considerable a problem it has become over the past five years here in Waterford.”