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Public Participation Networks proposed by Government Working Group
Government has published the report of the working group on citizen engagement with local government, which recommends that a Public Participation Network, (PPN) be established in every Local Authority area to ensure extensive input by citizens into the decision-making process at local government level.
The report sets out how the PPN should operate to enable the community and voluntary and environmental sectors to take an active formal role in the policy making and oversight activities of the Local Authority. It proposes a framework for public participation and formal engagement with the community and will be underpinned by regulations and guidelines from the Department.
Engagement of this nature has been provided for under the Local Government Reform Act 2014. The regulations and guidelines, while allowing for the set-up of the framework for public participation across all Local Authorities, will also allow for more diverse engagement of citizens through other mechanisms, including the use of social media.