Rates meeting is delayed to support Roddens event

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Ballymoney councillors have agreed to delay striking the borough’s rates so they can attend a Friends of the Roddens meeting.

Last year Council expressed concerns after plans were revealed that the Roddens Residential Home could be axed under a proposed overhaul of Health Services.

During a recent Council meeting, the Chief Executive, John Dempsey explained: “Advice has been received from Friends of the Roddens (FOTR) giving notice of a meeting on the future of statutory car homes in Northern Ireland. The meeting will take place in Dunsilly Arms Hotel on Tuesday, February 11 at 7pm. FOTR would appreciate the support of members by their attendance.”

Responding Cllr Ian Stevenson highlighted that the next rates meeting to fix the district rate for the year had been set for the same date. He stated: “The Roddens is a very important issue and we need to go to the meeting. I propose we change the rates to Wednesday, February 12.”

Cllr Bill Kennedy then asked when the ‘cut off date’ was for the rates and the Director explained that ‘February 15th’ but ‘the 14th is the last day as it’s a weekend’.

Cllr Evelyne Robinson continued: “I’m not talking anything away from the Roddens meeting, but what is the topic, is it important?”

Cllr John Finlay suggested that the subject would be ‘a consultation on their future’ and added ‘they are looking for support.’

A debate followed over the date for the rates meeting to be rescheduled. Cllr Kennedy finally seconded Cllr Stevenson’s original proposal which was accepted.