Skip to main content

01 October 2022: The Citizens’ Assembly on a Directly Elected Mayor has concluded its final plenary meeting at Dublin Castle this afternoon. During a series of ballots that took place through the day, the Assembly members voted in favour of a powerful new Mayor with wide-ranging powers and responsibilities.

Responsibility for housing, homelessness, community healthcare, transport, the environment and emergency services were among the 15 areas recommended to be devolved immediately to the new Mayor. 6 other areas including Policing, Water, and Education were recommended to be devolved after 5-10 years.

The Assembly also recommended a series of new local government structures to support and sit alongside the new Directly Elected Mayor.

A full report and recommendations from the Dublin Assembly will now be prepared over the coming months ahead of being sent to the Oireachtas for consideration.

Speaking at the conclusion of today’s meeting the Chairman of the Dublin Assembly, Jim Gavin, said “I would like to thank all the members of the Assembly who have given up their time and their weekends since we began our work in April for their commitment, work, and passion to serve the great city and county of Dublin.

“They have thoroughly interrogated and understood our terms of reference to recommend what type of Directly Elected Mayor is appropriate for Dublin. In doing so they have voted to create a powerful and substantial figurehead to lead, represent and be accountable for our capital city, similar to other major international cities.

“The members of the Assembly have spoken loud and clear on local government reform. Their recommendations will represent a major change in how our city is run and will, I believe, transform Dublin for the better.

“This Citizens’ Assembly truly was ‘An Tionol Saoranach’ – a Gathering of Free People. These people, who truly love Dublin, have given their time and effort into this Assembly in order to make this city and county the best possible place to live, work, and raise a family. We are now preparing our formal report and I look forward to engaging with the Houses of Oireachtas on the timely implementation of the recommendations”.

The Assembly has now concluded its formal meetings that took place over a series of weekends from April-October. Over that time Assembly members were addressed by a range of local government experts, political scientists, international mayors from cities equivalent in size and scale to Dublin, serving and former politicians, and the CEOs of the four Dublin local authorities among others.

These discussions informed the questions that were put to members on today’s ballot papers that included: the extent of the Directly Elected Mayor’s powers alongside local government; the role of and fundraising capacity of the Mayor alongside local government; the election of the mayor and the role of local councillors; and the local government structures to support and work alongside the new mayor.

At today’s meeting, Assembly members agreed the questions on five ballot papers covering all of these areas and issues that were subsequently voted on throughout the day.

The outcome of today’s ballots was as follows:

Ballot Paper 1– Powers of the Mayor and Local Government

The Assembly voted to devolve 15 areas of responsibility immediately to the Directly Elected Mayor, and for a further 6 areas of responsibility to be devolved over a subsequent 5-10 year period.*

Ballot Paper 2 – A Directly Elected Mayor for Dublin

The Assembly voted that:

  • there should be a plebiscite on the creation of the office, its powers and its structures, before the Mayor is elected;
  • the Mayor should serve up to two terms of five years duration each;
  • there should be a mechanism to remove the Mayor either by Councillors or the public;
  • the Mayor should have the power to raise funds from markets, should retain funds from taxes paid in Dublin, and should be able to introduce local taxes.

Ballot Paper 3a – Election of Mayor

The Assembly voted that:

  • the criteria to be a candidate for Mayor should be aligned to councillors’ election criteria
  • nominations to run as Mayor could be secured through a variety of methods including an appropriate number of statutory declarations of support from the electorate and an appropriate financial deposit
  • people on the electoral register for Dublin local elections should be used for the election of the Dublin Mayor

Ballot Paper 3b – Role of Councillors

The Assembly voted that:

  • all Dublin Councillors should be made full-time;
  • Councillors’ salaries should be more reflective of a full-time commitment;
  • All Dublin Councillors should be provided with secretarial support.

Ballot Paper 4 – Structure, Part 1

The Assembly voted to endorse the new local government structure as presented, including:

  • a Deputy Mayor
  • a Cabinet for the Directly Elected Mayor
  • a Dublin City and County Assembly
  • a Dublin Citizens’ Assembly
  • a Plenary Session of all Councillors
  • retaining the existing 4 local authority model including existing Local Area Committees

Ballot Paper 5 – Structure, Part 2

The Assembly voted that:

  • the Deputy Mayor should be elected alongside the Directly Elected Mayor
  • the Cabinet should be chosen by the Mayor and comprise of a majority of elected Councillors
  • the Assembly members should be chosen by a combination of Councillors and the people of Dublin
  • the Dublin’s Citizens’ Assembly should be a permanent feature with randomly-selected membership rotated every year
  • the Government should respond to the Citizens’ Assembly report within 6 months and implement its recommendations within 2 years.


For more info contact Q4 Public Relations: Sabrina D’Angelo 086 032 3397 / Ronan Farren 087 934 0386

*The 15 areas of responsibility for immediate devolution are:

  • Arts/Culture/Sport
  • Childcare
  • Climate Change/Environment/Biodiversity
  • Economic Development
  • Healthcare Community
  • Housing
  • Homelessness
  • Night-time Economy
  • Planning/Land Use/Strategic Development
  • Tourism/Marketing
  • Transport
  • Waste Management
  • Support for the Traveller and Roma Community
  • Emergency Services
  • Infrastructure/Roads/Pathways

The 6 areas to be devolved after a 5-10 year period are:

  • Education – Primary and Secondary
  • Education – Tertiary/Third-Level/Skills
  • Gaeltacht/Irish Language
  • Healthcare – Primary
  • Policing
  • Water