Labour councillor Seán Ó hArgáin was the only councillor in favour of allowing events to charge people entrance into civic spaces such as the Parade or the Canal square.
Cllr Ó hArgáin said that he wanted it noted on the record at Monday’s Borough council meeting that he was against a stipulation in a new draft document on the use of the parade and canal square civic spaces that stated that all events held in civic spaces must be free of charge. “I’m not in favour of the stipulations that we don’t allow people to charge for events held on the Parade,” he said.
Cllr Ó hArgáin didn’t receive any support from his fellow colleagues. Cllr Noonan (Green Party) said “I would completely disagree with Cllr Ó hArgáin its a civic space and I think this council should reiterate that any event held in civic spaces has to be free of charge.” Cllr Brett (Fine Gael) also stated that he was very much against the idea of charging taxpayers to enter public spaces.
The document that was produced by the Kilkenny Borough Council is designed as a guide to help interested groups apply for permission to use the Parade or the Canal Square to hold public events. Town Clerk, Brian Tyrrell said that the new document should act as a check list to help people organise events.
Cllr Reidy (Fianna Fail) said that the public liability insurance required to use the civic spaces is too high. “Public liability insurance of €6.4m is too high. I think it is an added cost. I think we need to be flexible in our approach to public liability,” he said.
Cllr Coonan (Fianna Fail) raised the issue of taxi’s being forced to move from the taxi rank outside the Left Bank during recent events on the parade. Cllr Coonan said that the taxi’s provide a service and should be accommodated when there are events taking place on the parade. Mr Tyrell responded that the only place where taxi’s could be accommodated was the loading bays. He said that the loading bays were required by businesses and that the taxi rank at Bateman quay had been extended to accommodate 16 taxis specifically for use when the parade bays were closed.