AFTER 35 years of commitment and dedication to fulfilling a multitude of roles within the local authority, Director of Services for the Roscrea, Thurles and Templemore areas, Matt Shortt, retired recently to a chorus of glowing tributes from people he worked with and met through his career.
Mr Shortt, who has been Director of the Municipal Council since its creation after the amalgamation of Tipperary’s North and South Riding Councils in 2014, thanked his colleagues after they paid tribute to his long career as part of the Tipperary local authority.
Described by Cathaoirleach of the Municipal Council, Michael Smith (FF) as “one of the most down to earth and approachable people I ever had the pleasure to work with,” Mr Shortt was very humble after his colleagues took time during their monthly meeting in Thurles to acknowledge his service and thank him.
“I think I have sat through somewhere in the region 800 to 900 sessions of the Council and I have always enjoyed dealing with the public and being a public servant in my time here,” Mr Shortt said.
“It’s a terrific system we have and you should never underestimate the value of the work you do as part of the local authority,” Mr Shortt told his colleagues, adding it was “an honour and always a great pleasure” to be part of the Tipperary County Council team.
“You oversaw so many crucial projects in your time with the Council and that will always be your legacy – delivering for the people on so many projects that have shaped our area,” Cllr Jim Ryan (IND) told Mr. Shortt.
Cllr Ryan, who was first elected in 1999, told Mr Shortt’s last monthly meeting of the Municipal Council that since his first day he found Mr Shortt “very approachable” and that he was often impressed by “how proud and effective a manager” Mr Shortt was.
Leas Cathaoirleach, Micháel Lowry (IND) described the retiring Director as “always very level-headed and a great peace maker, who always effected a positive change even in very difficult situations,” while Cllr Seamus Hanafin (FF) described Mr Shortt as a source of “great advice and insight into the role of Councillors and how they work.”
Cathaoirleach Cllr Smith thanked the Director for “putting so much of your life into local government for the people of the area,” and said he felt the key to Mr Shortt’s success ad longevity as a Director was his extensive knowledge of the people and area he served.
“Matt has always been had tremendous common sense and always showed courtesy to everyone he worked with and met,” Cllr Noel Coonan (FG) told the meeting, adding that there “are lessons” in the outgoing Director’s “hands-on approach and great patience.”