DONEGAL County Council is continuing to make every effort to provide its public services in a managed way during the COVID-19 emergency.
The Council has confirmed that its facilities – aside from libraries, playgrounds, museum and Regional Cultural Services – have remained open under normal opening 4times.
However, the Council has issued a number of protocols.
There has been an increase at the Council offices’ motor tax counters and the public has been advised to use the online service at www.motortax.ie
“It is against this background that key personnel are meeting regularly to ensure the Council is prepared for the current situation,” Donegal County Council said in a statement/
“In addition, the Council’s COVID-19 Crisis Management Team continues to meet daily and consider the best advice from the medical experts, national bodies and government.
“The Taoiseach in his Ministerial address to the Country last night highlighted the challenges we face, the steps we all must take and the efforts required from the public services over the period ahead. The Council as a public service is expected to make its contribution to society and the community at this time and will do so in a considered and managed way.
“As notified last week, the Council has closed its libraries across the County and the Museum and Regional Cultural Services in Letterkenny to the public. In addition, the Council’s playgrounds across the County have been closed and we are aware how much impact that has on families with young children at this time. However, the closures were implemented to help protect the children and parents who might be using them. We continue to take the best advice of the medical experts and national bodies in that regard.
“At this time, all Council facilities, other than those referenced below, are open to the public under normal opening times.
There are a number of protocols in operation for staff and its customers as follows:
1. Customers are strongly encouraged to deal with the Council by telephone, e-mail, website or by other virtual means in so far as possible. This includes the making of electronic payments rather than visiting our cash offices;
2. Customers visiting our premises shall be expected to observe and use the hand sanitisation equipment, social distancing and to follow the directions given by staff;
3. Customers can expect to be asked upon arrival at our premises some fundamental questions such as if they have a temperature, have a cough or have other similar indicators that the COVID-19 virus displays. Any customers who have those indicators will be asked to place their details and paperwork in a sealed pouch/envelope in the drop box provided and it will be dealt with after 72 hours when the risk has abated. In addition, those customers will be asked to return to their car or home and deal further with their enquiry by telephone or computer.
Other customers not displaying symptoms will be directed how to queue up and be spaced apart as they make their way to the public counter. It is expected that queues may extend outside the buildings and customers should be prepared for queuing outside in poor weather and be dressed appropriately.
4. The Council has seen an increase at its offices recently in customers showing up at the motor tax counters. There is a very good service available online for motor tax and this is widely used throughout the Country and indeed by many in Donegal. Where possible, customers are strongly encouraged to use this online system and customers can get help by calling the Council, speaking to a friend or relative who knows what to do or look up www.motortax.ie
5. The Council will make special arrangements for customers who have exceptional needs at this time or who have an emergency. This can best be arranged by a telephone call to us.
6. When groups of people arrive at our offices with only one of them requiring a service, only one person will be allowed to proceed to the public counter. The remaining people in the group will be asked to wait outside.
The Council added: “It is possible that our arrangements could ease, or be tightened at short notice and staff at the entry point to our offices will be following the latest protocol.
“The Council will continue to monitor, review and adjust its arrangements to service the public as further information becomes available.
“The Council both asks and thanks the general public for its cooperation with the protocols with accessing its services at this challenging time. We hope that it will both assist our staff and customers and together and as a community we will look out for each other and help get through this pandemic as best we can.”Tags: