Fermanagh and Omagh District Council is reviewing the hosting of Christmas lights switch on events in the district this year as it continues to face financial pressures.
The local authority cancelled the Halloween fireworks displays in Enniskillen and Omagh six days before they were due to take place this year.
With costs to host the traditional lights switch on events expected to be considerably more than the Halloween events, the council said it is currently reviewing all expenditure, including the Christmas events.
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"A decision on the Christmas Lights Switch On events will be made in the coming weeks and the decision will be notified through press and social media,” a council spokesperson said.
“The budget allocated for Christmas Lights Switch On events is currently under review by Council Officers.”
The spokesperson confirmed that the immediate financial pressures on the council will continue to be an issue at Christmas time.
The council said "additional unbudgeted costs" have led to it facing the financial pressure, including Trade Union negotiations "on a variety of industrial relations matters".
The spokesperson added: “In the context of the ongoing cost of living crisis and immediate financial pressures on the Council as a result of additional unbudgeted costs including Trade Union negotiations on a variety of industrial relations matters, Officers continue to review all expenditure.
“At the October 2022 Policy and Resources Committee meeting it was agreed that, in light of the increasing financial pressures, the Council should revise its budgets, focus on the delivery of core and statutory services and reducing discretionary activities proportionately.
“At a Special Council meeting on 17 October 2022, it was agreed that Officers should investigate the feasibility of additional unbudgeted initiatives to support those in the District impacted most by the increase in cost of living, including the Community and Voluntary Sector.”
The decision to cancel the fireworks this year caused significant concern for many across the district, including one business representative who branded it an ‘insult’ to local businesses. However others have said it was a "brave" decision given the current economic climate.
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