Irish Delegation to the Committee of the Regions European Committee of the Regions

Welcome to the Irish Delegation Website

I - The Committee of the Regions
The Committee of the Regions (CoR) represents local and regional government in the EU policy formation and decision-making processes. The Committee is an advisory body established in 1994 to ensure that the public authorities closest to the citizen, in Ireland, the local and regional authorities, are consulted on European Union policies of direct interest to them.

Members of the CoR provide the EU with the views and experiences of the local and regional levels, as these authorities are often the implementing bodies for EU legislation. Similarly, CoR members are in a better position to inform their authorities and constituents about EU developments and the 'European process'.

The Committee is composed of 350 members representing the local and regional tiers of government of the 28 Member States. These full members are backed by an equal number of alternates (substitutes).  Ireland has 9 full members and 9 alternate members.

How the Committee of the Regions Operates
The Committee of the Regions normally makes its views known in the form of written opinions or resolutions. The CoR receives requests for its opinion from the Commission, Council and the European Parliament on communications and proposals for legislation.

The policy areas of mandatory consultation of the CoR are:
Economic and Social Cohesion
Trans-European Networks
Public Health
Education, Culture and Youth
Energy
Environment
Social Policy
Employment
Transport
Training

CoR Bureau Meeting in Dublin CastleThe other EU institutions may also consult the Committee of the Regions in other policy areas such as Agriculture or Spatial Planning and the CoR has the power to comment on any subject on its own initiative.

When the CoR decides to issue an opinion a rapporteur is appointed to prepare the opinion on behalf of the Committee. The draft opinion is discussed and amended at the Commission (or Committee) stage by members and the draft is then sent to the plenary session, attended by the full CoR membership, where it may be amended further and adopted.

Once adopted, opinions are directed to the EU institutions and to all other relevant parties. The Council and / or Parliament may then amend the proposed legislation to take account of the CoR opinion.

The Committee also adopts resolutions on topics of current political import which are also directed to the EU's decision-makers and prepares studies on general issues of interest to sub-national government in the European Union.

CoR Role Continues to Develop

Since its establishment in 1994, the CoR has been expanding its advisory role, seeking to influence policy through other channels. The CoR produces studies relevant to the local and regional level and has set up policy monitoring initiatives such as the Lisbon Monitoring Network, the Subsidiarity Monitoring Network and the EGTC (European Grouping of Territorial Cooperation) network - a legal instrument designed to facilitate and promote cross-border and transnational cooperation. In conjunction with DG Regio it also organises the Open Days events held in Brussels every October. The Irish Delegation facilitates the participation of Irish local and regional authorities in these networks and events.

Within Brussels, the CoR maintains linkages with the other EU institutions – the European Commission, the European Parliament, the Economic & Social Committee as well as the Council and Presidency of the European Council. Commissioners, Presidency Ministers and MEP’s regularly attend CoR meetings and there is a cross-fertilisation of influence between the institutions on policy issues.

Role of the CoR in EU decision-making process: a simplified model

Role of the CoR in EU decision-making process: a simplified model



Membership of the Committee of the Regions

Members with an equal number of alternates, are appointed by the Council for a five-year term on the basis of nominations from Member States. Members are completely independent in the performance of their duties and are not bound by any mandatory instructions. Under the terms of the Treaties, CoR members must be members of a local or regional authority or be politically accountable to an elected assembly. The Treaties provide for CoR membership of up to 350 members.

The Structure of the Committee of the Regions
The Bureau is the executive body of the CoR. The Bureau establishes and monitors the CoR policy programme
and it also co-ordinates the work of the Plenary Assembly and the Commissions.

The Committee meets in Plenary Assembly, normally 6 times a year to discuss and adopt opinions, reports
and resolutions. The Plenary Assembly elects the President, 1st Vice-President and other Bureau members and
also establishes the Commissions.

The detailed work of the CoR is carried out in six Commissions

Territorial Cohesion Policy (COTER)


Economic and Social Cohesion, Structural Funds, Transport, Trans-European Networks, Urban Policy.
Economic and Social Policy (ECOS) Enterprise and the Internal Market, Innovation, Employment Policy, Social Policy, Equal Opportunities.
 
Environment, Research & Energy (ENVE) Climate change, Environment, Waste Management and Natural Resources, Energy
 
Natural Resources (NAT) Agriculture, Food Production, Fisheries and Maritime Issues, Forestry, Biodiversity, Health and Tourism
 
Education, Youth, Culture and Health (EDUC) Education, Training, Youth Culture, Sports, the Information Society, Public Health, Consumer Protection
 
Citizenship, Governance, Institutional and External Affairs (CIVEX) Area of Freedom, Security and Justice, Active Citizenship, Devolution and Governance, Enlargement, Immigration, Decentralised Cooperation.


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II - The Irish Delegation

The Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government nominates the nine Irish members and nine alternates on behalf of the Government. Nominations take account of geographical, gender and political considerations. All Irish members are elected members of their local authority and full members automatically become members of their regional assembly.




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Current Delegation Members
Members
Cllr. Patrick McGowan
Cllr. Maria Byrne
Cllr. Eamon Dooley
Cllr. Mary Freehill
Cllr. Declan McDonnell
Cllr. Fiona O' Loughlin
Cllr. Neale Richmond
Cllr. John Sheahan

 

Alternates
Cllr. Deirdre Forde
Cllr. Clifford Kelly
Cllr. John Lahart
Cllr. Niall McNelis

Cllr. Michael Murphy

Cllr. William Paton
Cllr. John Pender
Cllr. Mary Shields




Delegation Members  
Patrick McGowan

Cllr. Patrick McGowan

Donegal County Council
BMW Regional Assembly

Head of Irish Delegation

Commissions COTER and CIVEX
ALDE Group

Contact

Mayfield, Killygordon, Co. Donegal

Tel (074) 914 9570
Fax (074) 914 9570
Mobile (087) 686 8438
 
email patrick.mcgowan@donegalcoco.ie

Maria Byrne

Cllr. Maria Byrne

Limerick City & County Council
S & E Regional Assembly

Commissions ECOS and COTER
EPP Group

Contact

Mannixville, O'Connell Avenue, Limerick

Tel (061) 313 778
Mobile (086) 8300 951

 

email maria.byrne@limerick.ie

Cllr. Eamon Dooley

Offaly County Council
BMW Regional Assembly

Commissions ENVE and NAT
ALDE Group

Contact

Na Tullaig, Aughaboy, Ferbane, Co. Offaly

 

Tel (090) 64 54510
Mobile (086) 223 7058
email eamondooley@hotmail.com 

Mary Freehill

Cllr. Mary Freehill

Dublin City Council
S & E Regional Assembly

 

Commissions COTER and EDUC
PES Group

Contact

77 Grove Road, Rathmines, Dublin 6

 

Tel (01) 496 4777
Mobile (086) 812 6378
email marycfreehill@gmail.com

Declan McDonnell Cllr. Declan McDonnell

Galway City Council
BMW Regional Assembly

Commissions ENVE and EDUC
ALDE Group
Contact

4 Tara Grove, Wellpark, Galway
Fax (091) 764 783
Mobile (086) 243 5022

email declanpmcdonnell@eircom.net
Fiona O' Loughlin Cllr. Fiona O' Loughlin

Kildare County Council
S & E Regional Assembly

Commissions EDUC and CIVEX
ALDE Group
Contact

Cappanairgid, 63 Great Southern,
Newbridge, Co. Kildare
 
Tel (045) 436 792
Fax (045) 435 944
Mobile (087) 2345 160
email fionaolough@eircom.net

Cllr. Neale Richmond

 

Dun Laoghaire Rathdown County Council

S & E Regional Assembly

 

Commissions ECOS and CIVEX

EPP Group

Contact

 

23 Kingston Heights, Ballinteer,

Dublin 16

 

Mobile (086) 7814514

email nrichmond@cllr.dlrcoco.ie  

John Sheahan Cllr. John Sheahan

Limerick County Council
S & E Regional Assembly

Commissions ENVE and NAT
EPP Group
Contact

Ballyguiltenane, Glin, Co. Limerick
Tel (068) 34662
Mobile (087) 207 9268
 
email john.sheahan@limerick.ie
 

 

 
Alternate Members
Cllr. Deirdre Forde

Cork County Council

EPP Group

Contact

 

12 Lislee Road, Maryborough, Cork

 

Mobile (087) 916 1952

 

email info@deirdreforde.ie

Cllr. Clifford Kelly

 

Cavan County Council

 

ALDE Group

Contact


Main St., Kingscourt, Co. Cavan

 

Mobile (087) 2583653

 

email clifford.kelly34@gmail.com

John Lahart Cllr. John Lahart

South Dublin County Council

ALDE Group

Contact

6 Orlagh Grange, Scholarstown Road,
Rathfarnham, Dublin 16

 

Tel (01) 493 9608
GSM (087) 261 5529
email jlahart@sdublincoco.ie

Niall McNelis Cllr. Niall McNelis

Galway City Council


PES Group

Contact

14 White Oaks, Clybaun Road
Knocknacarra, Galway

 

Tel (091) 534494
GSM (087) 619 7300
email mcnelis@votelabour.ie

Cllr. Michael Murphy

 

Tipperary County Council

 

EPP Group


Contact

 

Orpen, The Paddocks, Fethard Road,

Clonmel, Co. Tipperary

 

Tel (052)  612 7862

Mobile (087) 322 6699

email michael.murphy@tipperarycoco.ie

Cllr. William Paton

 

Carlow County Council

 

PES Group

Contact

 

Mill Street, Tullow, Co. Carlow

 

Mobile (087) 678 7115

Tel. 059 91 51286

email willfpaton@gmail.com

John Pender Cllr. John Pender

Carlow County Council


ALDE Group

Contact

Grangeview, Friarstown, Carlow

 

Tel (059) 916 3760
Mobile (086) 853 8696
email jpender@carlowcoco.ie

Mary Shields Cllr. Mary Shields

Cork City Council


ALDE Group

Contact

48 Halldene Avenue, Bishopstown, Cork

 

Tel (021) 4544 486
Mobile (086) 818 9908
email mshields@corkcity.ie

 

 

   

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III - The Irish Delegation Secretariat

The Dublin Office of the S & E Regional Assembly (SERA) is nominated by the Department of the Environment, Community and Local Government to act as secretariat to the Irish Delegation. The secretariat has also established an office in Brussels to provide additional ‘on-the-spot’ support to Irish members and to promote Irish regions within the EU institutions. Mr. Jim Conway is Secretary to the Delegation, Mr. John Crowley is the Dublin based support officer and Mr. Robert Collins is the Brussels based officer.

Role of the Secretariat
The secretariat to the Irish Delegation is the main contact point for the CoR in Ireland. It has five main functions:

Irish Regions Office
As well as briefing Irish members of the Committee of the Regions, the office in Brussels is developing its role to enhance the presence of the Irish regions and their local authorities within the European Union.

The objectives of the Irish Regions Office are to:

Visit the Irish Regions Office Website at www.iro.ie

Further Information
For any further information on the Irish delegation and the Committee of the Regions contact the delegation secretariat or visit the Committee of the Regions website at www.cor.europa.eu

The Delegation secretariat is co-located in Dublin and Brussels.

Dublin based secretariat - located in the Dublin office of the S & E Regional Assembly

Mr. Jim Conway

Tel (01) 807 4482
Mobile (086) 815 0109

email jconway@dra.ie

Address
SERA Dublin Office,
Unit K28,
Swords Enterprise Park,
Swords, Co. Dublin

Mr. John Crowley

Tel (01) 807 4482
Mobile (086) 609 6753

email jcrowley@cor.ie


Brussels based secretariat - located at the Irish Regions Office (IRO)

Mr. Robert Collins

Tel 00-32-2-233 1122
GSM 00-32-498 120821

email robert.collins@iro.ie

Address
Irish Regions Office,
5th Floor,
Chausée d'Etterbeek 180,
B-1040, Brussels

 

CoR Rue Belliard, Brussels

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