Over 1,000 people have signed the SIPTU Community Sector petition calling on the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government, Phil Hogan, to meet with the representatives of community workers who will be affected by his plans to “align” Local Development Companies (LDC) with Local Authorities. Among the politicians who have signed the petition are Independent TD, Maureen O’Sullivan and Sinn Féin TD, Mary Lou McDonald.SIPTU Community Sector Organiser, Darragh O’Connor, said: “The ‘alignment’ of LDCs and Local Authorities is a real issue for workers and communities. Not only do LDC workers face an uncertain future as the Minister seeks to establish a redundancy fund, but it is unclear how the community approach to development will be protected."A recent report by Smith Everett and Associates showed that between 2010 and 2012 there was a net gain of €7,800,000 to the Irish Exchequer for each LDC company, over  €311 million in total. The report also showed that staff costs are lower in LDCs when compared to Local Authorities.Darragh O’Connor added: “However, Phil Hogan seems intent on changing the system without talking to a major stakeholder, the workers.“By refusing to talk to workers Minister Phil Hogan is ignoring the experts who deliver for communities. This cannot continue. Over the coming weeks workers will be escalating their campaign for a say in the future of their jobs and communities.”To view the petition visit Click Here  The Smith, Everett and Associates report  “An Analysis of Local Development Companies Staff and Administration Costs and the Net Contribution their Services Make to the Irish Exchequer”