13 May 2017
By Tom O’Sullivan
Fianna Fáil Spokesperson on Sport, Kevin O’Keeffe has welcomed introduction of the Sale of Tickets (Sporting and Cultural Events) Bill 2017 but pointed out that it requires significant amendments to make it fit for purpose.
“While there is merit in the proposal, the bill as currently presented includes a number of weaknesses and legal ambiguities that if passed by the Oireachtas would actually make the system worse,” said O’Keeffe.
The Cork East TD was commenting after the 2nd Stage of the bill was debated by the Dáil and Fianna Fáil indicated that it would support its passage to the next stage, where it would be tabling a significant number of amendments in order to try to make the Bill fit for purpose.
“I think there is broad agreement across the Dáil that ticket touting is a scourge that requires a legislative response, we just need to be careful that in our haste to do something, we don’t end up undermining the whole point of new legislation.
“A fundamental flaw in the bill is the issue of price caps. Evidence from the United States suggests that putting a max cap on prices will actually lead to an increase in the cost of tickets. This is caused by forcing the resale of tickets onto the streets and concentrate supply in the hands of a smaller number of street sellers and overseas websites.
“This isn’t want consumers want, and it’s something that we believe requires further investigation and research.
“What should happen now, and Fianna Fáil will support this, is the bill should go to pre-legislative scrutiny to allow for a detailed examination of the bill, its provisions and possible consequences for those attending sporting or cultural events. In Fianna Fáil we are very keen to get this right,” concluded O’Keeffe.