Council goes virtual
A spontaneous vote of 45 in favour and zero against was taken at County Hall this week to determine whether Cork County Council meetings should be moved online.
Every councillor present voted in favour of the plan, although a small number voiced concerns relating to technical issues with services such as Zoom and Microsoft Teams.
Fine Gael Cllr John Paul O’Shea said that with Level 5 restrictions in place it was difficult to have all 55 council members in attendance and that moving the bimonthly council meetings online is “the way to do it”.
He said: “We must lead by example while on Level 5 and meet remotely and take decisions online.”
The councillor added that once restrictions drop to Level 3 again, meetings should return to County Hall.
Fianna Fáil Cllr Seamus McGrath agreed with Cllr O’Shea and said he believes the change is necessary.
He added: “As public servants we are essential workers but we also need to act responsibly. These meetings are very important. They are part and parcel of democracy.”
Similarly, in the last two weeks, Cork City Council made the decision to move its meetings online with its first virtual meeting held on Monday.