herald

Tuesday 25 September 2018

Safe seat? City's councillors asked to try new chairs

SITTING comfortably there, councillor? City politicians have been asked to "try out" a new set of chairs due to be installed in City Hall next month.

They have been invited to give their feedback on the chairs – which will be "upholstered in black leather".

It may not be the most pressing issue on the minds of elected representatives as the council puts the finishing touches to yet another harsh budget.

CONSULTATION

But officials are clearly keen to ensure the comfort of councillors and have requested they try out new chairs this week.

In an email to councillors, an official explained the new chairs were being purchased to accommodate the 11 extra representatives following next summer's local elections.

"We must purchase different chairs, slightly narrower with no arms to accommodate the new arrangements," the official said.

"Originally, it had been agreed by the protocol committee that flip-up chairs would be used but after consultation, it was agreed that individual chairs would be the most comfortable option for members.

"We have sourced some sample chairs that are currently in City Hall and will remain there until Thursday next.

"I would ask that you drop in to City Hall if you can and have a look at the chairs, try them out and give us your opinion. Bear in mind that these are samples – the finished article would be upholstered in black leather."

As previously revealed, the council chamber will be closed next month for the refurbishment works.

The revamp is necessary as a result of Environment Minister Phil Hogan's controversial decision to increase the size of Dublin City Council from 52 seats to 63.

ELECTIONS

Fianna Fail councillor Paul McAuliffe said he believed the €1m plans will "dilute the influence that local communities have on council services".

He said: "It's gerrymandering to ensure sitting government councillors retain their seats in the next local elections, I understand that this proposal was demanded by the Labour party in a deal thrashed out between the coalition parties.

"Dublin does not need more councillors."

hnews@herald.ie

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