Cllr John McCartin has proposed that a new bye-law be passed in Ballinamore to avoid traffic disruption caused by recreational vehicles parking in the town’s thoroughfare.
Cllr McCartin’s motion this month said, “As no prior notice was given to Leitrim County Council or the local businesses community, on a recent event in Ballinamore which caused major disruption to business, traffic and residents in the town, I propose that this Municipal District take advice from the Council Executive on what measures we can take or additional bye laws we can pass to avoid this kind of disruption in the future.”
Cllr McCartin said the town was jammed by large vehicles and an accident could have happened. He sought information on byelaws around parking of recreational and large vehicles on Ballinamore’s Main Street.
He asked could a bye law be passed that “prior consent” be needed from Leitrim County Council for parking large vehicles in the town. He explained this would allow for such vehicles if the town had a festival or large event planned.
The event mentioned in the motion relates to November 15 and 16 when the majority of businesses in Ballinamore closed early in the town due to a large party. Gardai said there were no reports of any incidents arising from both nights - read that story here.
The council said while they have the power to pass bye laws they “should only be considered when all other avenues, such as voluntary schemes have been exhausted.”
Director of Services Vincent Dwyer said “exceptions make bad laws.”
He asked was this a once off issue. Cllr McCartin said there had been a few smaller incidents in town and were at least three occasion at Haughton's Shore, Garadice where gangs drove away families with their large vehicles, drinking alcohol and blaring loud music.
Cllr Brendan Barry asked if parking was more clearly drawn out would this help policing?
Senior Engineer Darragh O’Boyle said “we cannot have an á la carte system.”
He said that people from Ballinamore are breaking parking laws regularly and, noting the new disabled parking space in the town, he asked “has any disabled person parked there yet?”
Cllr Ellis said there was anger locally on those both nights in November as the “town was held for ransom.”
Mr Dwyer said the council will meet with the Ballinamore business group along with local gardai and “come up with a solution.”