Businesses Express Outrage over Dublin Town’s Creative Quarter Festival

Traders not consulted over festival plans which will close streets and block loading bays

A proposed festival in Dublin City Centre has ignited controversy today after a multitude of varying-sized businesses have expressed concerns and anger over a lack of consultation and disruption to business. The ‘Creative Quarter’ festival, due to take place on the 26thand 27th August, will see busy streets closed off to traffic and a number of loading bays blocked.

Many businesses in the area have expressed concern over many aspects of the festival, including the lack of consultation offered from the organisers Dublin Town and the promotion of several businesses in the area over others. Joe Macken, founder and owner of the successful JoBurger restaurants, including one on Castle Market, has expressed his concerns; ‘The businesses in this area haven’t been properly informed of the details. We’re less than two weeks out from the event but we don’t yet have any specific details about what is going on. Dublin Town want to close off several streets and block off a number of loading bays at quite short notice. I myself am not opposed to a festival – actually I’d really love it.   But takes more than two lads with clip boards going around asking business what’s their party piece and any chance of a discount on the day for punters. We need to attract new business and reopen people eyes as to the fun that can be had in and around South William Street to not disturb the current flow of custom.  Well planned events – take time, have themes and are highly collaborative, why can’t we do it?”

Another business owner in the area, Mary Costelloe, of Costelloe & Costelloe, also voiced concerns over the festival; ‘’this event is about Dublin Town trying to justify their half-baked idea of a ‘creative quarter’ and it’s not about doing anything positive for business in the area. It doesn’t make sense to host this event at a very busy time of year. It is a badly thought-out, calamitous idea and all of the businesses I’ve spoken to are utterly outraged.’’

The Creative Quarter Festival will see intense disruption to Fade Street, South William Street, Castle Market, Clarendon Street, Exchequer Street and Drury Street. The event is organised by Dublin Town, who recently survived a very narrow vote on their 5 year renewal on 17thJuly.

ENDS

Please Note:

Joe Macken is available for interview.

For further 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

 

 

Paul
Paul Allen & Associates,
Public Relations,

18 Fitzwilliam Square South,
Dublin 2.
Tel: 00-353-1-6769575
Fax: 00-353-1-6769518

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Unsound legislation and unsafe procedures surrounding the manner in which BID plebiscite was conducted

25th July 2017

No to BID Campaign Vows to Continue their Campaign to Stand-Down BID Scheme

Calls on Gardaí to Investigate Vote

The No to BID Campaign group, formed to campaign against the renewal of the Dublin BID scheme, have announced that they will continue their campaign. The announcement comes in the wake of the narrow vote among city centre businesses on the renewal of the Dublin BID scheme for another five years. The No to BID group have renewed their mandate to ramp up their campaign following a huge 50% increase on the No vote from 2012.

A statement from No to BID spokesperson Kim Condon raised some of the concerns that arose during the campaign and during the election count on the 17th July; ‘’We also have extremely grave concerns about the unsound legislation and unsafe procedures surrounding the manner in which the plebiscite was conducted. A senior official in Dublin City Council admitted opening the ballot box and placing a large number of envelopes inside. We have written to An Garda Síochana asking them to investigate this incident. The No to BID Campaign will continue to campaign for transparency, accountability and corporate governance.’’

Ms Condon went on to say that the group will continue its campaign to disband Dublin BID; ‘’Following a meeting yesterday, the No to BID Campaign came to a unanimous decision to continue the campaign to disband the Dublin BID scheme and the private company DublinTown. We would like to thank all of the businesses for their continued support for the campaign to end the BID. We will represent the best interests of the city centre business community going forward.’’

The vote to disband the Dublin BID was held among certain business (double) ratepayers in the city centre. After a divisive campaign, the Yes vote has seen a collapse in its support with 843 business voting yes, compared to almost 1,100 in 2012 or a drop of over 20%. The No vote has seen its share surge from 511 in 2012 to 715 in 2017, an increase of almost 50%

The No to BID Campaign represents over 700 small and medium sized businesses. The No campaign had wide support, including the Restaurants Association of Ireland, the Irish Hotels Federation, the Irish Hairdressers Federation and the Irish Newsagents and Convenience Stores Association.

ENDS

Notes to the Editor:

Attached is Joe McCarthy’s note, an independent observer at the count on July 17th.  His note provides detail on the No to BID Campaign’s concerns over the voting and counting procedures.

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Cllr’s on board of BID support private quango

street cleaningCllr Lacey (Labour) and Cllr Nial Ring (Independent) have come out in support of the privitisation of street cleaning services in defiance of SIPTU, Trade Union, Shop stewards and DCC waste management workers. Both Cllrs are on the Board of the ‘BID/We are Dublin Town’ a private Company and a Quango which has basically been engaged in misinformation and scaremongering in the face of many businesses who wish to end their involvement with this quango.

(See statement here:

http://www.wearedublintown.ie/2017/07/cllrs-reaffirm-council-no-budget-dublintown-cleaning-service/

 

This is the letter, below, that SIPTU issued to Owen Keegan (CEO Dublin City Council) and also to all street cleaning workers on July 10th.

I find it difficult to understand how Cllr Lacey and Cllr Nial Ring who profess to be ardent trade unionists, indeed Cllr Lacey is a member of the ‘Labour party’, can come out against the Dublin City Council workers and Trade union members who have great concerns about losing their jobs to private companies like ‘BID/Dublintown”.

These double standards need to be exposed irrespective of the outcome of Monday’s vote on the BID/Dublintown.

It really is unprecedented that Cllr Lacey and Cllr Ring would issue such a contemptuous disregarding press statement in support of a private company.  A true slap in the face to the DCC workers they are elected to protect!

We all know what happened and what is still happening as a result of privatizing, general waste and the bins.

Let’s keep it Council.

page 1 SIPTU

Letter sent by SIPTU officials to City Manager, Owen Keegan with the concerns their workers have in relation to BID

 

page 2 SIPTU

Letter sent by SIPTU officials to City Manager, Owen Keegan with the concerns their workers have in relation to BID

 

No to BID Campaign Outraged at DublinTown’s Refusal to Appear at Public Debate

PRESS RELEASE WEDNESDAY 12TH JULY

No to BID Campaign Outraged at DublinTown’s Refusal to Appear at Public Debate

 

The No to BID Campaign has today (Wednesday 12th July) expressed its outrage at the refusal of DublinTown (formerly Dublin BID) leadership to appear at a public debate ahead of a vote on the renewal of the initiative.

 

Commenting on this, No to BID Campaign spokesperson Kim Condon said; “we are extremely angry and disappointed that DublinTown have refused to engage in the public debate organised for today. It is yet another example of their lack of transparency and the dictatorial style of leadership they engage in. The No to BID Campaign were very eager for business owners in the City Centre to have a chance to hear the issues properly debated in a public forum. As we have not received any response to our invitations, we are now forced the cancel the venue.” 

 

The public debate on the renewal of DublinTown (formerly Dublin BID) was organised for 6pm this evening at the St Stephen’s Green Club with an independent moderator to oversee the event.

 

Dublin BID (operated by DublinTown) 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 has been gathering momentum this week, with the Restaurants Association of Ireland, the Irish Hotels Federation, the Convenience Stores and Newsagents Association and the Irish Hairdressers Federation all declaring their support for the No side.

 

ENDS.

Mnx-Flyer-DublinTown2017-A5.indd

Trade Unions claim ‘no need for Dublintown’

 

11th July 2017

Trade Unions Claim Dublin City Council has no need for Dublin Town

The No to BID Campaign today (Tuesday, 11th July) welcomed SIPTU/IMPACT Trade Unions involvement in the campaign to scrap Dublin Town. In a letter seen by the campaign team, which was written to the Dublin City Manager, Owen Keegan highlighting the fact that the DCC Waste Management Department ‘Can deliver services to all areas of the city day and night without the need of external providers and we are surprised that this message was not outlined more forcefully.’

Commenting on this, No to BID Campaign spokesperson Kim Condon said; ‘Our campaign would like to thank Patrick McCormack from SIPTU for writing to the City Manager. In his letter he clearly states that Dublin City Council Waste Management staff will have no problem in coping in the event of a No vote, and reinforces the position that there is absolutely no need for Dublin Town and it should be scrapped immediately.’

In Mr McCormacks’ letter he follows on to say; ‘One of the biggest problems that our members face daily is the lack of enforcement personnel on the ground which is due to the failure of Dublin City Council to hire Litter Warden staff. A situation that if not resolved shortly will be referred to the WRC as a breach of the Landsdowne Road Agreement.’

Kim went on to say; ‘We would not be surprised if there were walk outs by Trade Union members in the coming days.’

Tomorrow Evening, (Wednesday, 12th July) the No to BID Campaign will host a debate in St. Stephen’s Green Club from 6pm. The debate will be chaired by former Environment Editor of The Irish Times correspondent, Frank McDonald and will be broadcast live on Facebook Live.

VISIT  www.notobidcampaign.com

 

Irish Times advert

Advert in today’s Irish Times 11/06/17

 

-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

 

Emergency Motion Calls on DCC CEO Owen Keegan to Withdraw Council Staff from DublinTown Board

PRESS RELEASE: MONDAY JULY 10TH 2017

 

Emergency Motion Calls on Dublin City Council Chief Executive Owen Keegan to Withdraw Council Staff from DublinTown Board

An Emergency Motion has been brought before Dublin City Council calling on the CEO Owen Keegan to withdraw DCC staff from the DublinTown Board. This is to allow due process in any investigation the Council may have to carry out as a result of complaints made to the Council by DublinTown CEO Richard Guiney about Dublin City Councillor Mannix Flynn.

An official complaint was made by Mr Guiney to Dublin City Council on Friday regarding Councillor Flynn, who is heavily involved in the No to BID Campaign.

Commenting on this, No to BID Campaign spokesperson Kim Condon said; ‘’we were alarmed to hear about the complaint in the first place. Even more alarming was that Councillor Flynn first heard about the complaint when a member of the media contacted him about it on Friday. This would suggest that officials in Dublin City Council or in DublinTown have been selectively leaking information to the media as part of their dirty tricks campaign to discredit our group. We are calling on Owen Keegan to investigate immediately and for DCC staff to withdraw from the board of DublinTown to allow due process in the investigation.’’

Ms Condon went on to say; ‘’the No to BID Campaign is having a surge in momentum and we have received a huge increase in support. It is clear to me that DublinTown is in trouble and chose to engage in this stunt as it is in the dying days of its reign.’’

The Emergency Motion, brought to the DCC South East Area Committee, will be heard today (Monday 10th July) and has been tabled by Councillor Flynn.

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, a proposed increase to the levy and highly-contested footfall figures.
Paul Allen & Associates,
Public Relations,

18 Fitzwilliam Square South,
Dublin 2.
Tel: 00-353-1-6769575

 

DCC response to missing BID Ballots

If your business has not received a ballot paper for the BID/Dublintown plebiscite please see instructions below from Dublin City Council on how to have your ballot reissued.

www.notobidcampaign.com

Subject: Ballot Question

Dear Cllr Flynn

 

All 3001 Ballots were posted on the 20th of April to the Billing Addresses of the Ratepayers.  A small no of Ballots were returned to us as An Post could not deliver to the address listed with the Rates Office.  The Rates Office hand delivered these returned ballots  when possible to the billing address of the ratepayers concerned.  As you know in many cases the billing address is different than the rateable property.   Other times the Ballots were delivered correctly but went elsewhere within the companies concerned or a change of billing address had not been notified to the Rates Office.

 

Please ask Mr. or _  and any other eligible ratepayer who has an issue with a ballot to contact us directly at bids@dublincity.ie if he has not received his Ballot and we will either confirm the billing address on file so that the Ballot can be retrieved or issue a duplicate ballot.  Mr will confirm that the Ballots were delivered correctly to his billing address.

 

The process for the issuing of a duplicate ballot if the ratepayer can confirm non-delivery is as follows:

 

  • A signed letter from the ratepayer on Business Paper (or other business documentation) stating that ballot papers have not been received for the properties in question and requesting a Duplicate Ballot.
  • On receipt of this letter which can be posted, hand delivered to the Chief Executive’s Department or scanned and emailed to bids@dublincity.ie , a duplicate ballot will be issued.
  • The Duplicate must be collected from the Chief Executive’s Department Block 4, Floor 4 Civic Offices, Wood Quay, Dublin 8.
  • Once a Duplicate Ballot is issued the original Ballot paper becomes invalid and will not be counted if returned.
  • Please state in the letter who is authorized to collect the Ballot. That individual should have photo ID

 

 

We will only deal with the ratepayer themselves on any inquiry regarding their ballot.

 

Regards

 

Deirdre Ní Raghallaigh

 

Senior Executive Officer / Oifigeach Feidhmiúcháin Sinsearach

  1. 01 222 6738 M: 0868150582  E.Deirdre.niraghallaigh@dublincity.ie

 

Chief Executive’s Office, Civic Offices, Wood Quay, D.8

Oifig an Phríomhfheidhmeannaigh, Oifig na Cathrach, An Ché Adhmaid, BÁC 8