Boyle Town Councillor Mary Clifford was elected as new Mayor of Boyle recently, taking over the reigns from Raymond Maughan, the outgoing Mayor. Mary, who is a native of Co. Donegal, says she had a keen interest in politics from an early age. She also acknowledged the influence on her career of former TD, the late Sean Doherty. She told the People: ‘My parents always supported the Fianna Fail party and I became interested in politics during my teenage years. I also worked under the late Sean Doherty for many years and this certainly gave me a great insight into the world of politics’. Following her election, Mary is delighted to get the opportunity to be able to serve the people of Boyle – an honour she is extremely proud of. ‘The reason why I went for this is because I was involved with the community on so many levels already. I have a keen interest in the local GAA club and I support any sporting organisation. I am also on the Parish Council. I can only say that there is no better honour than to be appointed Mayor of your town’. Mary was quick to establish the problems which the town faces and which she believes need immediate addressing. ‘Unemployment in the town is a slight concern at the moment. The closing down of both Green Isle and Boyle Quarries has not had a positive bearing on employment. It is my hope that we will be able to attend to this problem in the near future’. Mary intends to do this by putting pressure on the newly-formed Government to provide the area with jobs, since there have been no major employment breakthroughs since the developments at Green Isle and Boyle Quarries. ‘My idea is to approach the new Government on that front and I would be hopeful that they will keep us in their plans and provide us with the employment possibilities that this town needs.’ Mary also hopes that the proposed new hotel for the town will not only bring employment to the area but also help Boyle prosper in terms of tourism. ‘The new hotel which is planned will be a great asset for the town. Not only will it provide employment for the town, it will also promote tourism and entice more people to visit the town of Boyle’. There has been much controversy in relation to planning matters in the Boyle area in recent times. Mary views this as being unfortunate as it is preventing the town developing commercially. ‘Housing in the town is excellent. It’s the planning for more commercial buildings like hotels for instance that there appears to be difficulty with’. Mary also has indicated her intent to clean up the town’s ‘act’ on the issue of litter which she sees as an important issue. ‘Litter is always a problem and will be another topic on the agenda which I hope to address. We are currently involved in the tidy towns competitions but we will be looking at other options as well once we assess the situation entirely. ‘I can only hope that the town goes well over the next number of years. I would love to see more new businesses attracted to the town. I am a firm believer in talking up your own town so let’s be proud of what we have achieved in Boyle to date but also be conscious of the fact that there is certainly work to do to promote its profile’, concluded Mary. So it appears that the people of Boyle can look forward to an extremely positive and productive year with Mary Clifford as Mayor. The People want to wish her all the best and every success during her term in office.