While the Galway Chamber has called for reduced charges in city car parks, Fine Gael councillor Hidegarde Naughton has gone further by calling for free parking at selected times during the week.
Both calls are aimed at encouraging people to come into town to shop thereby supporting business and employment in the city.
Cllr Naughton believes the Galway City Council must put in place local support initiatives for businesses in the run up to Christmas and the New Year as “many local businesses are struggling to survive in the current economic downturn”.
As a result Cllr Naughton is calling for the free parking; a reduction in park and ride rates over the Christmas period to help reduce traffic congestion; and a reduction or a freeze on commercial rates up to 2012.
“These initiatives would be a positive start,” she said, “in empowering local people to take the necessary steps to ensure that employment is supported and sustained.”