SINN Féin councillor Sharon Benson has described a Council response to a question regarding public lighting as “absolute bullshit”.
At this Monday’s Metropolitan District meeting, the City North representative asked the local authority to provide the cost of replacing 5,200 public lights with energy-efficient LED bulbs.
Physical Development Director of Services Brian Kennedy explained that there were a number of variables to be considered when putting a cost on the replacement of failed lights.
These included the wattage, location, the works requirement for replacing the light, traffic management costs, and health and safety considerations associated with traffic, overhead electric or fibre optic cables and trees.
These costs did not include cabling work associated with unbundling, installation of micropillars, bracket or column replacement, ESB attendance costs, traffic management costs, civil works or for procurement, design, project management and supervision costs.
Expressing frustration with the response, Cllr Benson said that “no attempt” was made to answer her question. She claimed the local authority didn’t know the answer and asked if they had costings done.
“You haven’t looked for value for money. We have to get value for it and a special meeting is necessary,” she suggested.
Mr Kennedy again said that each individual light is different making it difficult to come to a definitive cost.
He told councillors he would revert back with a definitive answer.
“We need more meat on the bones,” Sinn Féin councillor John Costello declared.
“Serious questions need to be answered.”