No to BID Campaign calls on PAC to Investigate DublinTown

PRESS RELEASE: JULY 7TH

www.notobidcampaign.com

No to BID Campaign calls on PAC to Investigate DublinTown
The No to BID Campaign, the group of Dublin City Centre businesses opposed to the renewal of DublinTown, have written to the Public Accounts Committee Chairperson Sean Fleming TD asking him to investigate serious concerns the group has about the corporate governance and the lack of transparency at the company. The primary concerns relate to allegations of financial mismanagement, DublinTown’s support for drug injection centres and the city’s footfall figures.

The call for the PAC to investigate DublinTown comes ahead of a vote among business owners in city centre on the 17th July. Businesses are being asked whether to disband DublinTown (formerly Dublin BID) or to extend it for another five years.

The campaign to date has seen many allegations of missing ballot papers, falsified footfall figures, support for drug injection centres and breaches of corporate governance. Commenting on this, No to BID Campaign spokesperson Kim Condon said; ‘’we are calling on the Public Accounts Committee Chairperson Sean Fleming to immediately investigate what has been happening at DublinTown over past 5 years. DublinTown and its management have forced us into this position by their lack of transparency and clarity. The businesses who pay into the DublinTown scheme have been repeatedly stonewalled when asking important questions on the footfall figures, drug injection centres and financial affairs at the company. We have been point-blank refused any real answers.’’

Ms Condon went on to say; ‘’nobody wants to take this sort of extraordinary action, but we have been left with no other alternative. As the campaign has gone on, more and more serious concerns and questions about DublinTown have arisen. There would appear to be no level of corporate governance and their lack of engagement with businesses who pay their wages is astounding. Members of the No to BID Campaign have been threatened with legal action by DublinTown, seeking to censor us. That is the sort of organisation we are dealing with and a perfect example of why I’ll be voting No to BID on July 17th and I call on all businesses in the city to do likewise. We have organised a public debate on Wednesday 12th, and Bobby Kerr has agreed to host a radio debate on Newstalk tomorrow Saturday morning at 11.20am. I would encourage business owners to attend and tune in, as it may be our last chance for honest answers ahead of the vote.’’

DublinTown (formerly Dublin BID) is a company which was set up in 2008 following a vote of Dublin city centre businesses. It is charged with improving Dublin City as a commercial district. Businesses in the district pay a compulsory levy of 5% of their commercial rates. DublinTown is renewed every five years by a vote of businesses in the district.
The No to BID group comprises of over 800 businesses in Dublin City centre, illustrating a diversity of business interests dedicated to shutting down the DublinTown operation.

ENDS
Please Note:
Kim Condon is available for interview.
For more information please contact:
Paul Allen                                                                 Rory Sweeney
Paul Allen & Associates                                          Paul Allen & Associates
18 Fitzwilliam Square, Dublin 2                            18 Fitzwilliam Square, Dublin 2
01 676 9575 / 087 257 5700                                       01 676 9575 / 086 897 6442

 

http://www.notobidcampaign.com/press-release.html

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‘No to BID’ campaign invites ‘DublinTown’ to a Public Debate

PRESS RELEASE

Monday July 2nd  2017

Traders demand true facts to emerge on finances and footfall figures
The campaign seeking to disband DublinTown (formerly Dublin BID), the company set up by Dublin city centre businesses, has today (Sunday 2nd July) invited a representative of DublinTown to a public debate at Dublin City Hall ahead of the plebiscite vote to disband DublinTown on Friday, 17th July. The No to BID campaign will extend an invitation to all traders affected by the DublinTown levy to attend the debate event.

Commenting on this, spokesperson for the No to BID campaign, Kim Condon said ’’We propose that the debate be held on Wednesday 12th July at Dublin City Hall. It will be an important opportunity for both sides to engage in proper debate about how effective DublinTown has been and why it should be disbanded. It is also a chance for DublinTown to answer important questions about how they have spent the money they collected from Dublin businesses and serious concerns about the footfall figures.’’

Ms Condon went on to say; ‘’This is a critical time for Dublin city. It is essential that the truth emerges as there are high levels of misinformation and fakery of facts on the campaign. We feel that this is a huge vote for the future of Dublin city and it is imperative that the public get a chance to hear both sides of the campaign. We urge all traders to vote No.’’

DublinTown (formerly Dublin BID) is a company which was set up in 2008 following a vote of Dublin city centre businesses. It is charged with improving Dublin City as a commercial district. Businesses in the district pay a compulsory levy of 5% of their commercial rates. DublinTown is renewed every five years by a vote of businesses in the district. The vote this year is overshadowed by a groundswell of anger and mistrust from businesses over a proposed 34% increase to the levy and highly-contested footfall figures.

The No to BID group comprises of over 800 businesses in Dublin City centre, illustrating a diversity of business interests dedicated to shutting down the DublinTown operation.

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No to BID Campaign Welcomes Major New Support from Industry Associations

Press Release

4th July 2017

No to BID Campaign Welcomes Major New Support from Industry Associations

The No to BID Campaign, who are seeking to disband Dublin Town (formerly Dublin BID) at a vote on 14th July, have today welcomed major new support from industry associations including the Irish Hotels Federation, the Restaurants Association of Ireland, the Convenience Stores and Newsagents Association and the Hairdressers Association of Ireland. Alongside this, leading members of the Dublin Chamber of Commerce and the Licensed Vintners Association have also joined the campaign.

Spokesperson for the No to BID Campaign Kim Condon said; ‘’We are delighted to have the support of these trade associations, and this support highlights the huge amount of support we have been receiving from Dublin City Centre businesses over the last several months. We have been out canvassing support and there is hardly a business we call to that doesn’t support a No vote on July 17th.’’

However, the campaign to date has been rocked by allegations that campaigners on the Yes side are playing ‘dirty tricks’. Commenting on this, Ms Condon said ‘’we have been notified by a sizeable number of businesses that people in support of DublinTown have been asking to collect votes and deliver them to the ballot box on behalf of the business. It is our understanding that this is illegal and we strongly urge all businesses not to hand over their votes. These allegations, if true, are a perfect example of the kind of dirty tricks we have come to expect from the Yes side in this campaign.’’

DublinTown (formerly Dublin BID) is a company which was set up in 2008 following a vote of Dublin city centre businesses. It is charged with improving Dublin City as a commercial district. Businesses in the district pay a compulsory levy of 5% of their commercial rates. DublinTown is renewed every five years by a vote of businesses in the district. The vote this year is overshadowed by a groundswell of anger and mistrust from businesses over a proposed 34% increase to the levy and highly-contested footfall figures.

The No to BID Campaign comprises of over 800 businesses in Dublin City centre, representing a wide range of business interests dedicated to shutting down the DublinTown operation.

ENDS

Tuam Babies

 

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Essex Street Site, Temple Bar Dublin -Above, a list of institutions under investigation in the Mother and Baby home  inquiry

 

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Nora at Exchange Street Lower, Temple Bar West

 

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Names of infants buried at Tuam Mother and Baby home

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Repeal the patronage of the present Artane Band

Tonight before Dublin City Council meeting a motion will be tabled to discontinue the Lord Mayor of Dublin’s patronage of the Artane Band. This band form part of the institutional gulags that are directly connected to the Tuam mother and baby home, the Magdalene Laundry system, the Industrial and reform school system, the orphanages, Bethany Home and the many other sites and centres of injustice to children and women that are scattered around this country.

Please support our campaign to disband the Artane Band.

www.disbandtheartaneband.com

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Bon Secours grounds Tuam

DUBLIN CITY COUNCIL

Emergency Motion on behalf of Independent Cllr. Mannix Flynn (IND)

That this meeting of Dublin City Council calls on the Lord Mayor of Dublin, Cllr Brendan Carr, to withdraw the patronage of the Lord Mayor’s Office from the Artane Band.
This patronage causes grave offense and insult to the many who suffered child sexual abuse in the Artane Industrial School, Artane Boys Band and other such Christian Brother Institutions.

It is important to note that the present Artane Band was founded in the Artane Industrial school and continues to wear the insignia and uniform of that industrial school.  Its origins are firmly rooted in the industrial school system and its legacy of crimes against children, further it is still connected to the Christian Brothers organization.

Reasons;.

The Lord Mayor, Cllr. Brendan Carr, has continued to ignore the many who are campaigning for justice with regards to what happened in their childhoods in the Artane Industrial school and indeed the Artane Boys Band, where many young children were sexually, emotionally and physically abused, their suffering continues to this day

For the Lord Mayor and chairman of Dublin City Council to continue to be the patron of the Artane Band is an outrage and will bring Dublin City Council’s reputation into disrepute by supporting the legacy of child abuse that took place in Artane Industrial School and the Artane Band. It is important that Dublin City Council and the office of the Lord Mayor distance themselves from this band and its history, which are well documented in the Ryan Report.

It is not the children who are in the band at present, but rather the band that the children are in, and its association with crimes against children. The institution of the Artane Industrial School and the Artane Band are directly connected to the likes of the Tuam Mother and Baby Homes, the Magdalene Laundry system, the Industrial and Reform School system, the Bethany Home and Orphanage system and form a central part of the architecture of containment that was so unjust.

Dublin City Council in this instance is facilitating further harm and suffering to the many victims of child rape and cruelty perpetrated on them while in the Artane Industrial School, home of the Artane Boys Band.

It is a fact that many of those who were abused and child raped by Christian Brothers were members of the Artane Boys Band, now known as the Artane Band.

Time to repeal the patronage of the present Artane Band in the interest of justice

Cllr. Mannix Flynn

Mr. Pussy book launch tonight

Alan Amsby is a true champion and one of our most provocative artists.  He challenged this society in a way that very few did.  He gave an outlet and an opening to a lot of men who were coming to terms with their identity.  Before Brendan O Carroll or any of the tame Panto dames, there was Alan Amsby (Mr Pussy).  Dangerous, provocative, innovative, ground breaking and loved by everybody including all those in the shadows and underworld of Dublin’s then unlawful gay scene.

I hope President Higgins sees fit to honour Alan Amsby in some way. It is fantastic to see this book finally come out of that big wardrobe that Alan Amsby has.  Its part of our social and political history as well as our artistic cultural identity.

Alan Amsby, a British citizen, gave this city and this country his life and a fantastic service well before the Belfast agreement.
mr-pussy

In 1969, a young Englishman named Alan Amsby arrived in Ireland with a frock and a wig. He was booked for one week, but was an overnight sensation, and made Dublin his home. Catholic Ireland had never before seen anything like the beautiful and outrageous Mr Pussy. For almost fifty years, Alan has delighted audiences and demolished boundaries.

Here, he recalls his early days as a drag princess and model in Swinging London, partying the likes of Judy Garland, Noël Coward and David Bowie; being heckled by one of the Kray twins – and snogging Danny La Rue. He also remembers grey 1980s’ Ireland, shocking the country with its first adult panto, and losing friends to the Aids epidemic. Then there’s his 1990s’ renaissance, ‘doing time’ with Paul O’Grady and Daniel Day Lewis, and opening Mr Pussy’s world-famous Café De Luxe with Bono.

Full of hilarious celebrity yarns, sequinned characters like the remarkable Stella Minge, and a lot of shameless name-dropping, Mr Pussy is the story of a legendary, ground-breaking entertainer, full of pathos, charm and wit.

 Alan Amsby (aka Mr Pussy) was born in London and performed a popular drag act before moving to Ireland in the late 1960s. 

Hidden Cultures, Public Platform

Big thanks to Rosaleen Mcdonagh and the cast of Mainstream at The Project Theatre, Dublin tonight, a very relevant socio-political play.
Many layers, many themes, many betrayals, including the betrayal of one’s own body. This play needs to be taken on tour to educate this nation about our collective cruelties, our indifference, our racism and the crimes we perpetrate on each other.
This is a brave courageous work by a fantastic playwright, who has travelled the long road of prejudice. She operates in her own uniqueness and compliments the great work of Christy Brown, Paddy Doyle, the Pecker Dunne and of course Sean O Casey.
While the work is about class, prejudice,Travellers, mainstream society written by a female playwright, it’s literary scope is universal and all-embracing. While disability is also a theme that runs through this work it is extremely intelligently portrayed and given expression of great integrity and is not reliant on any gimmicks or tricks. These are proud people, strongly portrayed by some of the finest acting I’ve seen anywhere. (Donal Toolan, John Connors, Grainne Hallahan and Neili Conroy – cast)
These characters are human beings like ourselves different and equal and their pain is like our pain. It’s a deeply humanising piece and sparks off the idea in us all that we all have a bit of a flaw. We all have our abilities and disabilities. We are all prejudice to one another.
mainstream

Cast of Mainstream – Donal Toolan, Grainne Hallahan, John Connors, Neili Conroy – Written by Rosaleen McDonagh

But Rosaleen McDonagh is a great playwright who won’t remain silent and fights that prejudice. Won’t be stereotyped. Won’t be pigeon-holed or marginalised, no matter what. She takes on feminism, male prejudice, class divide, racism, disability, traveller culture, child abuse, body betrayal and gay identity in one great lash of the pen. Excellent.
 
The centre of the work is about exclusion, prejudice and marginalisation but she manages to bring us as an audience and a public right into her fold.
I felt great coming out of this play even though its themes were dark. This playwright has kicked the door open into the light, and it’s very welcome. Anybody who has any prejudice or any doubts about the Travelling community or any ‘othered’ member of society should get to see this work.
Arts Council, Dublin City Council and all ye people out there with the public purse make sure this play gets out on a National tour – Please – for all our sakes.
This is a work of national importance.  
Outstanding honesty.