Latest Laois News: Laois County Council welcomes latest councillor PJ Kelly

Latest Laois News: Laois County Council welcomes latest councillor PJ Kelly

PJ Kelly takes the seat of Cllr. Tom Mulhall

The April meeting of Laois County Council (LCC) held today (April 26) saw the seat of Cllr. Tom Mulhall filled by his Fine Gael colleague PJ Kelly. Long-serving councillor Tom Mulhall had to resign earlier this year on health grounds.

At this morning’s LCC meeting Cllr. Aisling Moran proposed that PJ Kelly fill the current vacancy. Cllr. Thomasina Connell seconded this motion. Cllr. Moran was effusive in her praise of party colleague PJ Kelly:

“(PJ Kelly) will make an excellent councillor. He has worked tirelessly behind the scenes. PJ will be another strong voice for Laois.”

photo of front of Laois County Hall in Portlaoise
Latest Laois councillor PJ Kelly took his seat earlier today (April 26th) 📷 Laois County Council

Cllr. Connell echoed those sentiments as follows:

“I have known PJ for most of my life. He would make an excellent councillor. I also wish Tom (Mulhall) a full recovery.”

Cllr. Padraig Fleming welcomed PJ to the council and stated that he was looking forward to working with Mr. Kelly for the next few years. Cathaoirleach Cllr. Catherine Fitzgerald welcomed Mr. Kelly onto the council and stated she had no doubt that Mr. Kelly will get the hang of the workings of the council in a few weeks.

Cllr. John King welcomed PJ onto the council as well. He continued as follows:

“PJ was a strong ally to Tom Mulhall. PJ is very used to people. He has a calm demeanour and will fill the shoes of Tom Mulhall. “

Cllr. Conor Bergin wished PJ well in his new role. He stated the following:

Latest Laois councillor PJ Kelly took his seat earlier today (April 26th) 📷 Laois GAA

“I have known PJ for eight or nine years in Fine Gael circles. He is a great voice for his community. I think he is going to do very well. He’s coming in at an unusual time. He will rise to the challenge (however).”

Cllr. John Joe Fennelly stated that PJ Kelly was joining a great organisation (LCC).He continued that all the councillors miss Tom Mulhall but wish PJ the very best of luck.

Cllr. James Kelly welcomed the new councillor onto LCC but opined that he had big boots to fill. Cllr. Noel Tuohy said that anything the councillors can do to help the new councillor would be done. Cllr. Ben Brennan welcomed PJ onto the LCC and wished him well. Cllr. Brennan then took the opportunity to praise Tom Mulhall.

“I wish Tom and his family good health. Tom was a gentleman and a hard worker.”

Tom Mulhall had to resign from his council seat on health grounds earlier in 2021.

Cllr. Willie Aird mentioned that he had spoken to Tom on the phone the previous night. Cllr. Aird went on to state the following:

“Tom is very happy that a ‘friend of his’ is replacing him on LCC. It’s great to see him coming on board.”

Cllr. Ollie Clooney said the following:

“I’d like to congratulate PJ. It’s a proud day for him and his community. I have no doubt that PJ will continue Tom’s role.”

With those welcomes and praise ringing in his ears PJ Kelly addressed his fellow councillors as follows:

“Thanks to all the councillors for the nice words. I’m stepping in his (Tom’s) shoes. I will never fill them even though I’m a size 10 and he (Tom) is a size 8. I’d also like to thank the Fine Gael councillors.”

LCC Chief Executive John Mulholland said the following:

“I extend a warm welcome to you PJ. I want to assure you of every assistance to helping you get used to Local Government.”