Cork City Council held its first paperless meeting tonight — a move which will save taxpayers almost €7,000 a year.
IT staff hovered to provide support as all council documentation was presented electronically through software called SharePoint, with councillors accessing their reports via iPads, phones, and laptops, while agenda items and reports were displayed on large TV screens.
Previously, councillors received their agenda, council reports, information and responses to individual councillor questions in a large bundle known colloquially as “the council pack”. City Hall spent between €6,000 and €7,000 a year hiring taxis to deliver these to the homes of councillors every Thursday before their Monday meeting.
Officials have repeatedly defended the taxi deliveries, saying that the estimated cost of An Post deliveries would be in the region of €13,000 per annum. But tonight, it was all digital. Lord Mayor, Cllr John Sheehan said that he was delighted.
“The decision to go paperless means that Cork City Council meetings are more environmentally friendly and it also represents better value for money,” he said.
The council’s director of corporate affairs, Paul Moynihan, welcomed the move, but asked those at meetings to ”bear with us,as we may experience teething problems”.