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100th ARTICLE - Minutes of the First Meeting of Kildare County Council

Local Government ( ) Act, 1898.

 County Council of Kildare.

 Minutes and Proceedings.

Minutes of the First Meeting of the Council of the County of Kildare , convened by Mr. Charles Daly, Sub-Sheriff of the County and Returning Officer, by circular dated 17th April 1899 and held in the Grand Jury Room of the County Courthouse , Naas, on Saturday, the 22nd day of April, 1899, at 11 a.m. o’ clock.


The Secretary to the County Council (Mr. G. de L. Willis) read a circular letter, dated 18th April 1899, from the Local Government Board for Ireland enclosing an extract from the notice of the result of the election of County Councillors in the County Kildare, and directing him to read out the names of the Councillors before the business of the first meeting was proceeded with.  The names of the Councillors were accordingly read by him from a list furnished to him by the Returning Officer as follows:-


I.   Elected Councillors.

County Electoral Division.


Present or absent.


Mathew J. Minch, M.P., J.P.



Owen Cogan,


Ballymore – Eustace

George Wolfe, J. P.,



Ambrose R. More O’ Ferrall, D.L.



Edward Hayden,



Sir Gerald R. Dease, J.P.,



Stephen Heydon,



Peter Crosbie,



James Kelly (Boherboy House),



John Field,



Edward Fenelon, J.P.,



Charles Jn. Bergin,



John Cribbin,



Laurence Malone,



Lord Frederick Fitzgerald, J.P.,



Edward Jas. Cassidy,



James Kelly (Rathbride)



Stephen James Brown



Joseph Patrick Dowling



Stephen Murphy



Francis Colgan, J.P.


II.  Ex-Officio Councillors (or their Substitutes).



Present or Absent

Chairman of Rural District Council of Naas No. 1

John T. Heffernan


Chairman of Rural District Council of Baltinglass No. 3.

John Kelly


Chairman of Rural District Council of Edenderry No. 2

Joseph O’ Loughlin


Substitute for Chairman (Mr. John Field) of Rural District Council of Celbridge No. 1

 William R. Ronaldson



Substitute for Chairman (Mr. M. J. Minch, M.P.) of Rural District Council of Athy No. 1.

 Thomas Orford





III. Councillors chosen by County Kildare Grand  Jury

James E. Medlicott, J.P.


George Mansfield, D.L.


William T. Kirkpatrick, J.P.



The roll of the Council having been called over, the Secretary stated that it was his duty to ask the Councillors to satisfy themselves that they were not subject to any of the disqualifications prescribed by the Statute or the Orders in Council, as any Councillor who acted if disqualified would be liable to serious penalties.  The Secretary accordingly read Article 11 (4) and Article 12 of the Local Government (Application of Enactments) Order 1898 and Sub-Section (3) of Section 94 of the Local Government ( ) act 1898.


The Secretary then handed round copies of the Declaration accepting Office as prescribed in Article 9 (5) of the Local Government (Application of Enactments) Order 1898, and same were duly made and subscribed before him by all the Councillors.


It was proposed by Mr. M. J. Minch, M.P., seconded by Mr. Laurence Malone -  That Mr. John T. Heffernan be Chairman of the Meeting.

The resolution was unanimously adopted, and the Chair was taken by Mr. John T. Heffernan.


The Chairman asked the Council to decide whether they would elect from persons qualified to be Councillors one or two persons as Additional Councillors, in accordance with Sub-section (2) of Section 3 of the Local Government Act.  The Council unanimously decided to proceed to elect two persons to be such additional Councillors.  It was then –

Proposed by Mr. John Field, seconded by Mr. Wm. R. Ronaldson, - That Mr. Richard McKenna, Rowanstown, be co-opted a member of this Council.

Proposed by Mr. C. J. Bergin, seconded by Mr. Thomas Orford, - That Mr Joseph Connolly, Pollardstown, be co-opted a member of this Council.

Proposed by Mr. S. J. Brown, seconded by Mr. George Mansfield:-  That Mr. N. J. Synnott, Furness, Naas, be co-opted a member of this council.

After some discussion Mr. Synnott’s name was, with the consent of the Council, withdrawn by his proposer and seconder.

Mr. Richard McKenna and Mr. Joseph Connolly were then unanimously elected Additional Councillors.  Mr. McKenna being present made the Statutory Declaration in presence of the Secretary, and took his seat on the Council.


At this stage Mr. Edward J. Cassidy, Councillor for Monasterevan Division, attended, and made the Statutory Declaration in presence of the Secretary.


Proposed by Mr. M. J. Minch, seconded by Mr. Edward Hayden – That Mr. Edward Fenelon be elected Chairman of the Council for the year.

Proposed by Mr. John Field, seconded by Mr. Laurence Malone –

That Mr. Stephen J. Brown be elected Chairman of the Council for the year.

The Council divided and there voted:-

For Mr. Fenelon

For Mr. Brown

Mr. M.J. Minch

Mr. Francis Owen Cogan

Mr. Edward Hayden

Mr. George Wolfe

Mr. Stephen Heydon

Mr. A. More O’Ferrall

Mr. Peter Crosbie

Sir Gerald R. Dease

Mr. James Kelly (Bohergoy) (1)

Mr. John Field

Mr. John Cribbin

Mr. Charles T Bergin (2)

Mr. Joseph P. Dowling

Mr Laurence Malone

Mr Thomas Orford

Lord Frederick Fitzgerald

Mr. John Kelly

Mr. E. J. Cassidy

Mr. J. Kelly (Rathbride)

Mr. Stephen Murphy

Mr. Francis Colgan

Mr. James E. Medlicott

Mr. George Mansfield

Mr. W. T Kirkpatrick

Mr. Wm. R. Ronaldson

Mr. Joseph O’ Loughlin

Mr. John T. Heffernan



Mr. Brown, Mr. Fenelon, and Mr. McKenna declined to vote.

Mr. Stephen J. Brown was then declared elected Chairman for the year by a majority of 18 votes to 9.

The Chair was then vacated by Mr. John T. Heffernan, and taken by Mr. Stephen J. Brown, after he had signed the Declaration accepting Office.


Proposed by Mr. Laurence Malone, seconded by Mr. Edward Hayden, and passed unanimously –

That Mr. M. J. Minch, M.P., be elected Vice Chairman of the Council for the year.


The Secretary read two printed circulars from the Local Government Board, viz, No. 143 of 10th April, and No. 160 of 20th April, and handed in a circular letter and other printed documents forwarded therewith relative to the business to be transacted at the first Meeting of the Council.


The Council proceeded to consider the Board’s Circular Letter (No. 143 M) commencing with the appointment of Committees.  In connection therewith –


The Secretary read a printed letter dated 21st inst. from the Under Secretary, Dublin Castle, directing the Council (under sub-section (2) of Section 9 of the Local Government Act.) to appoint its proportion of a Joint Committee for the management of Carlow District Lunatic Asylum, and informing the Council that the Lord Lieutenant had decided that the Joint Committee of Management should consist of 18 members, of whom ten should be appointed by the County of Kildare, and further stating that of the number so appointed one-fourth might be persons not members of the County Council.

Proposed by Mr. M. J. Minch, M.P., seconded by Sir G. R. Dease, and unanimously agreed to –

That the appointment of a Joint Committee be postponed to next meeting.

It was further decided that the Local Government Board should be asked to state how many persons not members of the Council could be appointed under the provision relating to one-fourth of ten.


Proposed by Mr. J. P. Dowling, seconded by Mr. Edward Fenelon, and passed unanimously:-

That the Finance Committee consist of seven members with the Chairman and Vice-Chairman, (three to be a quorum) and to meet at Naas, and that the following Councillors, with the Chairman and Vice-Chairman, be the Committee:-

Sir. G. R. Dease,

Mr Edward Fenelon,

Mr. George Wolfe,

Mr. Stephen Murphy.

Mr. J. T. Heffernan,                  C. Bergin.

Mr. J.P. Dowling,

Mr. R. Ronaldson,

 L. Malone (3)


Proposed by Sir G. R. Dease, seconded by Mr. George Wolfe, and passed unanimously –

That pursuant to Article 36 (4) of the Local Government (Application of Enactments) Order 1898, and to Article 4 (2) and Article 10 (1) of the Local Government (Procedure of Councils) Order 1899, the Finance Committee of the County Council of Kildare is hereby appointed to be the Proposal Committee of said Council, and the quorum of the Proposal Committee be three.


Proposed by Sir G. R. Dease, seconded by Mr. R. McKenna, and passed unanimously –

That the following Councillors, with the Chairman and Vice-Chairman, be appointed a Standing Orders Committee, (three to be quorum) to draft Bye Laws and Standing Orders, to be considered at a future meeting of the County Council:- Mr. Mansfield, Mr. Kirkpatrick, Mr. Malone, Mr. Medlicott, and Mr. Crosbie.


Proposed by Mr. John Field, seconded by Mr. J. P. Dowling, and passed unanimously –

That the following Councillors be appointed a Committee (five to be a quorum) to draft and submit to the County Council a scheme for the collection of the Poor-Rate, as required by Section 115 of the Local Government (Ireland) Act 1898:- Mr. Ronaldson, Mr. O’Loughlin, Mr. Heffernan, Mr. Orford, Mr. John Kelly, Mr. Mansfield, Mr. Medlicott, Lord Frederick Fitzgerald, Mr. Field, Mr. O’Ferrall, the Chairman and the Vice-Chairman.


At this stage by permission of the Council, the following resolutions were proposed by Mr. George Wolfe and seconded by Mr. Own Cogan:-

1.        - That we affirm the right of the Irish Nation to a full measure of self-Government.  We accept the Local Government Act of 1898 as a first instalment of the same, and call on the Imperial Parliament to proceed with the further restitution of our rights.

2.           That we endorse the findings of the Financial Relations Commission, and knowing from our own practical experience that Ireland is heavily overtaxed, we urge the Government to hasten forward their Bill for instituting an Irish Board of Agriculture and Industries, and call upon them to place at the disposal of said board, as an instalment from that over-taxation, a substantial annual grant for the purpose of assisting the County Councils to develop our resources, promote Technical Education, the better housing of our labourers, and similar necessary works.

3.           That we call on the Government to extend the same facilities for University Education to the Catholics of Ireland as their Protestant countrymen enjoy.

4.           That we also urge on the Government the necessity of appointing a commission to inquire into the excessive rates charged on freight by the Irish Railways, and to revise the same where they are found to militate against the commercial and trading interests of the community. (4)

Amendment proposed by Mr. George Mansfield, seconded by Mr. W. T. Kirkpatrick:-

That the Resolutions proposed by Mr. Wolfe be put seriatim and not in globo.

The Chairman called for a show of hands, when it appeared that the proposer and seconder were the only Councillors who voted for the Amendment, and it was accordingly declared lost.

The Chairman then put the Resolutions as a whole.  Mr. Mansfield voted against them.  Sir Gerald R. Dease, Lord F. Fitzgerald, Mr. Medlicott, Mr. Kirkpatrick, and Mr. O’Ferrall declined to vote.  The other Councillors present voted for the Resolutions, and the Chairman accordingly declared them carried.


The Council resumed the consideration of the Local Government Board letter of instructions of 10th April and it was –

Proposed by Mr. James E. Medlicott, seconded by Mr. M. J. Minch, M.P., and passed unanimously -

That pending the next Quarterly Meeting of the County Council the Secretary be authorised to obtain such temporary clerical assistance as he may find to be necessary, at an outlay not to exceed £50-.


Proposed by Sir G. R. Dease, seconded by Mr. J. E. Medlicott, & passed unanimously –

That the Committee already appointed to suggest a scheme for the collection of the Poor Rate to appointed a Special Committee to report to the next Quarterly Meeting of the Council the arrangements that may seem to them to be necessary as regards the Permanent Office Staff, and also to suggest a scale for the remuneration and expenses to be paid to County and Union Officers (under Article 17 of the Transitory Provisions Order) for extra work in bringing the Act into operation.


The Secretary read a letter dated 20th inst. From the Local Government Board, in which there was enclosed a negotiable receipt for £7870-5/s being one half year’s payment in respect of the agricultural Grant.  He reported that he had lodged same on 21st inst with the Hibernian Bank, Naas, (as the present Treasurers of the County) to credit of the County Council of Kildare.

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