Mc Loone begins talks with unions

County Manager Michael Mc Loone is today beginning the process of talking to Trade Unions at town and county council level to explore how best to redeploy staff.

With less than a month to go before he retires, Mr Mc Loone as again stressed that public service reform is his obsession, and his wish is to ensure that services in Donegal are delivered more efficiently.

Mr Mc Loone made a presentation to the Town Councils in Letterkenny and Ballyshannon yesterday

Last week, a majority of unions accepted the Public Service Agreement reached at Croke Park, ending the work to rule which has hit council meetings and events in recent months. More importantly, from his perspective, it opens the way for a new programme of reform.

Mr Mc Loone says today, he begins talking to the unions about how best staff can be deployed at both town and county level. This will be informed by the controversial whole system of work, which has dominated discussions in the county council chamber in recent months.

He is stressing, however, that while the work to rule is over, the fact remains that the government moratorium remains in place, and his hands are tied in terms of hiring new staff. This, Michael Mc Loone says, makes it all the more vital that the talks getting under way today give him the scope to redeploy staff in a way that ensures the best use is made of the resources available.

Tributes were paid to Mr Mc Loone by both councils, with Roads Director John Mc Laughlin taking over as Town Manager in Buncrana, and Environmental Services Director Seamus Neeley taking over in Letterkenny.