Press Release –Leisureland: Cllr Catherine Connolly 16th December 2014
Councillor Connolly said City Management must be guided by unanimous vote of elected members of the City Council.
At a specially convened City Council meeting last Friday a written update was given to Councillors in relation to the newly refurbished Leisureland and also the justification for the proposed increase in fees.
After the matter had been clarified and debated for almost three hours, a motion tabled by Cllr Connolly was unanimously accepted by all the City Councillors present.
More specifically said Cllr Connolly the motion called on City Council Management not to implement the planned fee increases and further that a strategic plan be prepared and brought back before the Elected Members as a matter of urgency indentifying among other matters how Leisureland revenue could be increased through other measures including the use of the Hall and the outside facilities and the empty plot adjacent to the Leisureland Building.
In response to the passing of the unanimous motion, City Management clarified that they did not have to comply with such a motion.
However it would be most unusual and unwise said Cllr Connolly for a City Manager to ignore the unanimous vote of all elected members.
Furthermore one of the few powers left to City Councillors is to pass a budget for the City and/or to make necessary amendments to any budget passed depending on different scenarios and/or events that arise in the course of any year.
In this regard it is quite open to City Councillors to increase the subvention for Leisureland if necessary and particularly in order to allow for a grace period after a closure of the facility for almost a year and to allow time for a strategic plan to come back before Council..
Moreover in this regard she said it is vital that we encourage people to come back and use the facility again including the many swimming clubs and organizations who suffered great inconvenience and loss and who were forced to use other private facilities while Leisureland was closed.
Given this background it is patent nonsense said Cllr Connolly to increase the fees and risk losing the income including almost a quarter of million per year from the various swimming clubs that will have to pull out if the fees are increased.