Local Authorities should follow the example of Limerick and Galway and waive licence fees for outdoor dining and street events, a Fine Gael TD has said. Dublin Mid-West TD Emer Higgins has called on local authorities in the capital to support businesses preparing for a summer of outdoor trading by waiving or reducing the cost of licence fees needed for on-street dining or events. This comes after Limerick City and County Council announced a number of new initiatives to support businesses preparing to re-open after many months of being unable to trade. The initiatives include, the waiving of licence fees for outdoor dining and plans to install path build-outs. Galway City Council has also committed to waiving the outdoor dining licence fee for businesses.
Deputy Higgins said: “We are all looking forward to a safe outdoor summer this year. And I’m hugely looking forward to seeing businesses, both across the country and in my local area, being able to reopen and to begin serving customers again. “I’m delighted to see local authorities doing their bit to make the cost of reopening a bit easier for businesses and outdoor vendors by waiving licence fees for outdoor dining and committing to installing build-outs to increase path capacity for businesses who need the space and the customers.
“I’m calling on my own local authority of South Dublin County Council and all other local authorities in the capital city to consider doing the same to support businesses and outdoor vendors as we gear up for an outdoor summer. “Outdoor vendors and casual traders also face huge fees, a vendor selling tea or coffee can expect to pay a licence fee of up to €5,000 to the council and this goes up to €10,000 for ice-cream and confectionary. “The evidence is there that being outdoors is far safer in terms of contracting Covid-19, so we need to continue to build and bolster our outdoor economy to ensure a successful summer for business” Deputy Higgins concluded.