Fianna Fáil Councillors on Dublin City Council raised serious concerns at tonight’s special council meeting and succeed in getting a number of motions passed including one that requires that homeowners in the city must be provided with at least the same level of waste collection service that they had previously from the Council and that the Council service is restored while this is ensured. The Manager admitted that the changeover to Greyhound was badly handled and they had made mistakes that will take weeks to sort-out.
Fianna Fáil Group Leader on Dublin City Council, Cllr Mary Fitzpatrick, thanked the Lord Mayor and Labour Councillors for supporting the eight Fianna Fail motions one of which calls for homeowners to receive at least the same service as before, or that a real choice of more than two alternative service providers is offered. Cllr Fitzpatrick said: “Our motion further requires the City Manager to re-instate domestic bin collections in the city. Separately the Fianna Fáil motion calls on the City Manager to ensure that Greyhound offer the same payment terms to customers i.e. quarterly in arrears to all customers
“Recent reports that Greyhound has incorporated itself in a foreign jurisdiction, if correct, is cause for concern. Should this prove to be the case, not only does it mean DCC having engaged a non resident company that may not be required to pay tax or file accounts in this jurisdiction it also means that the more than €10million they are demanding from hard pressed homeowners in Dublin is to be held off-shore. What happens to our money if they decide if they go out of business? That is why we are seeking an immediate response from the Manager to this report and if correct an explanation of when he first became aware of this change of jurisdiction.
“Our motion demanding the City Manager to provide a report detailing what services Ernst & Young provided with regards to domestic waste collection was also passed. €250k is an awful lot of public money and we need clarity around the criteria by which E&Y were awarded the contract, what other service providers bid for the contract, the total value of the contract and identify what expertise E&Y provided that DCC itself did not have after 100 years providing waste collection services?”
“Commenting after the meeting on the ongoing fiasco arising from the privatisation of waste collection services, Cllr Fitzpatrick said: “ We still intend to refer this entire matter to the Chairman of the Dáil Public Accounts Committee. We have very serious concerns about how this process has been managed and if public money has been appropriately spent during the privatisation process. At tonight’s meeting our motion to refer the decision by the City Manager and adjoining County Managers to withdraw from waste collection to the Competition Authority was agreed. We expect the Competition Authority to examine if their withdrawal could lead to the establishment of a private monopoly, to review the decisions and the resulting competitive situation across the four Dublin markets.”
“Constituents have raised concerns with me that their personal information has been sold onto a private operator and so on behalf of the citizens of Dublin we got support for our motion which calls on the Data Protection commissioner to determine if there has been a breach of data protections guidelines.”
“We believe employees in Dublin City Council waste collection have been poorly treated and that the Council has failed them as an employer, failing to give them an opportunity to compete for the waste collection service and/or providing them with alternative meaningful employment.”
Cllr Fitzpatrick concluded: “The Minister for the Environment should immediately bring forward legislation to introduce a national waiver scheme to address the needs of more than 40,000 low income households in the city.”