Agency rationalisation and alignment programmes mean that the number of local and regional bodies operating in the Republic of Ireland has been cut in half between 2012 and 2016 according to a new study published by the Institute of Public Administration.
The study, 'Local and Regional Bodies in Ireland 2012-2016' by Laura Shannon uses a database of local and regional non-commercial public bodies compiled by the Institute of Public Administration in 2007 as the baseline.
It identifies 130 local and regional public bodies currently in operation in Ireland, a figure which is down from the 360 recorded in 2007.
During this period the number of local authorities have been reduced from 114 to 31 (mainly due to the abolition of town councils), while eight regional authorities and two regional assemblies have been replaced by three new regional assemblies.
At the local level, the alignment of community and economic development functions with local authorities has resulted in significant changes to the systems of local governance, with City and County Development Boards and City and County Enterprise Boards being abolished.
Local Community Development Committees and Local Enterprise Offices now operate within each local authority.
At the regional level, organisations have been subsumed by their parent departments or agencies. For example, tourism functions previously delivered via regional structures such as Regional Tourism Development Boards, Shannon Development and Dublin Tourism have been subsumed into the national tourism development agency, Fáilte Ireland.
The full report is available to download here.