New faces will appear on the Leitrim County Council ballot in May
Eighteen local seats are up for grabs in May and the race is well and truly on to fill them, with candidates emerging in all three Leitrim municipal districts.
The Ballinamore race is an unknown quantity until Fine Gael selects its candidates following the retirement of Cllr John McCartin. There is also a question mark in relation to the Fianna Fáil strategy.
In the Carrick- on-Shannon Municipal District, sitting councillor Sinead Guckian has indicated to the Leitrim Observer that she currently does not intend to run, either on the Fianna Fáil ticket or as an Independent candidate.
This leaves Cllr Sean McGowan (Bornacoola) and first-time candidate Paddy Farrell from Leitrim Village on the ticket with the possibility of a third candidate being added at a later stage.
Fine Gael are expected to put forward Cllr Finola Armstrong-McGuire (Carrick-on-Shannon) and former councillor Thomas Mulligan (Mohill) with Sinn Fein’s Séadhna Logan (Mohill) also seeking re-election.
The independent ranks will be filled by councillors Enda Stenson (Eslinbridge) and Des Guckian (Annaduff) with first-time candidate Yvonne Hollidge, also from Annaduff, declaring her intention to run.
In the Manorhamilton Municipal District, Fine Gael has selected its three candidates — Frank Dolan (Newtownmanor), Sean McDermott (Glenfarne) and John Joe Dowdican from Tullaghan.
Sinn Féin’s Padraig Fallon (Drumkeerin) will be the party’s sole candidate here.
The Fianna Fáil strategy in the north of the county has yet to be decided. What is known is that sitting councillors Mary Bohan (Drumkeerin) and Justin Warnock (Kinlough) will be going again. A third candidate is likely, with Rossinver's Philip Rooney confirming that he has been approached to run but hasn't made up his mind and is “considering it at the moment”.
Sitting Independent councillor Felim Gurn (Manorhamilton) will be seeking re-election, with Thomas Kelly (Kinlough) also expected to put his name forward.