Local elections

Newport looks set to return the same councillors to Tipperary County Council

Newport candidates could battle it out for a seat

Tipperary Star reporter

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Newport looks set to return the same councillors to Tipperary County Council

Newport looks set to return the same councillors to Tipperary County Council

The local election for the Newport electoral area should be a rather straightforward affair.

The general feeling is that all four sitting councillors will be returned, though the two Newport-based candidates could battle it out.

Fine Gael's Phyll Bugler, a teacher, who topped the poll in 2009, the last time Newport had its own electoral area, is expected to do the same again such is her standing in her native Ballina, where she works tirelessly with local groups, especially Tidy Towns and in tourism.

Fianna Fail elected two councillors out of the area in 2009 and again in 2014, and unless there is a collapse in their vote, they should do the same again, with Cllr Mattie Ryan, outgoing county council and local area cathaoirleach, coming in ahead of Cllr John Carroll.

Cllr Fiona Bonfield, Labour, was elected first time out in 2014, and would seem to have enough work to be re-elected. Well known through her involvement in sport and the local Comhaltas, she delivered Newport a new town park, which should stand to her.

However, Newport has never elected the same councillor twice in succession and so she will be looking over her shoulder at former councillor John “Rocky” McGrath. The Independent / Lowry Team man lost out in 2014 and is hoping for a return. It will all come down to transfers.

Sinn Fein is running Portroe care worker Teresa Collins, but despite the party having a sizeable vote in the area, it probably won't be sufficient for her to take a seat. With no other candidate on a similar wavelength in the electoral area, she could struggle to gain transfers.

Museum manager Rose Anne White, Ballina, is standing for the Green Party, and with climate change being very much to the fore, she is expected to do well among her core supporters.