15 June 2012 No Comments by The Northern Standard

By Michael McDonnell

Local primary school teacher Liz Duffy was elected unopposed as Mayor of Ballybay Town Council on Monday night last — at an AGM that was marked by an apparent rift in the Fianna Fáil camp when Therese Hamilton and Gerry Traynor ran head to head for the position of Deputy Mayor.
After the unanimous election of Ms Duffy, the vice-principal at Scoil Éanna NS and wife of former town mayor the late Noel Duffy, Cathal O’Friel nominated Therese Hamilton for the position of Deputy Mayor (and vice-chairperson of the council). He was seconded in this by his party colleague Michael Smyth.
But fellow Fianna Fáil representative Gerry Traynor appeared to take some of the other councillors by surprise when he stated that he wished to propose himself for the position. He pointed out that he had been a member for 27 years, but that he never had the opportunity to be Mayor or Deputy Mayor of the Town Council.
(Cllr Traynor had been chairperson of the old Town Commission in 1999, before the position of mayor was officially introduced, and before the body was designated a town council.)
The outgoing chairperson, Gene Duffy of Sinn Féin, seconded councillor Traynor in this regard. The matter was subsequently put to a vote, in which Cllr Traynor was elected by six to three.
He was supported by the new Chairperson, Liz Duffy, by her fellow Fine Gael councillors Mary McGinnity, Michael Gilmour and Paul Carragher, and by Gene Duffy. Cllr Hamilton was backed by her nominating Fianna Fáil councillors, Cathal O’Friel and Michael Smyth.
Meanwhile, after taking the chair to a round …

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