Emergency legislation could save gigs, claims FF

Emergency legislation allowing a ministerial review of appeals on decisions not to grant concert licences is the only way to resolve the row over the Garth Brooks shows, Fianna Fáil has said.

Timmy Dooley TD said draft legislation published by Fianna Fáil would allow such a decision to be appealed and let the concerts go ahead.

At present, even if Dublin City Council CEO Owen Keegan wanted to reverse the earlier decision of the local authority not to allow the last two shows go ahead as scheduled, he is precluded by law from doing so.

The only avenue would appear to be a judicial review, whereas Mr Dooley said the draft bill — if passed into law — would allow for an appeals mechanism which would leave the decision with the minister of the day.

Asked if the legislation, if enacted, could be applied retrospectively for the Brooks concert decision, Mr Dooley said: “Our legal advice is that it can.”

He said the proposal was “a stop-gap measure” and he had no issue with the Government either including amendments or stitching in a “sunset clause”, so that the measure only applied for the Garth Brooks shows and more comprehensive legislation could be put in place in future.

Mr Dooley said that he was disappointed that “the Government is washing their hands of this issue”.

However, Lord Mayor of Dublin, Christy Burke, said there was little possibility of emergency legislation being passed.

“It was asked [for] by the new Ballybough group and Enda Kenny made it clear it was not going to happen,” Mr Burke said, making reference to the new Ballybough Residents Supporting Croke Park group which has sprung up in recent days.

Mr Burke met Environment Minister Phil Hogan yesterday to discuss other matters, but said the issue of the concerts were raised. “The minister’s hands are tied by legislation,” he added.


Lifestyle

Columnist and trained counsellor Fiona Caine offers guidance to a woman who’s growing resentful of her widowed mum’s needy behaviour.Ask a counsellor: My mother is so clingy since losing my dad – what can I do?

More From The Irish Examiner