An audience of aspiring aldermen, roller derby enthusiasts and media watched the Town Council get back into business last night, with its first meeting of the year and one of the last for its term. With local government elections looming at the end of March, it was instructive: we saw aldermen struggling to make firm decisions, to reach consensus, to be consistent, to identify problems of enforcement and budgetary constraints ... and to get through the agenda in a timely fashion (the open meeting didn't finish till around 10pm and there was still quite a bit of confidential business to get through).
The issue of the night was about allowing the growing local roller derby league access to the basketball stadium, with aldermen going for the soft option of supporting the league to find another venue. There were also lengthy deliberations about graffiti removal, which must have had some aldermen wondering why council took the heat on its new graffiti by-laws when they appear not to have been enforced.
KIERAN FINNANE reports.
Pictured: Vacant Commonwealth bank building in Parsons Street this week. It's been attracting graffiti and paste-ups for months with no action from council.