The 9 at 9 Nine things you need to know by 9am…

EVERY MORNING, brings you the nine things you need to know as you kick off your day.

1. #PROTESTS: Protests against the proposed €100 Household Charge will take place across the country today.

The Government has said it hopes to raise €160 million in revenue for the State by applying the charge to homeowners –  but the plans have been met with considerable opposition. At the beginning of the month fewer than 70,000 households had paid the charge - less than 5 per cent of those expected to do so.

2. #ROAD DEATH: One man has died and another has been seriously injured in a single vehicle crash in Co Clare, which occurred at about 8pm last night on the Ennis to Tulla road. The road remains closed for forensic examination.

3. #LIBERTY HALL: The trade union SIPTU has been granted permission by Dublin City Council to demolish the 17-storey Liberty Hall on Eden Quay and erect a new building on the site. SIPTU plans to construct a 22-storey building to house new offices and a performance arts centre.

4. #SPENDING: The Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform, Brendan Howlin, has published report cards that offer an “unprecedented” release of information about how much Government departments are spending and what they are spending it has trawled through these to find some of the more unusual (Secret Service), controversial (banking crisis consultancy fees) and surprising (cherished numbers ) items…

5. #ONE YEAR ON: Twelve months ago, voters went to the polls in a general election that was among the most dramatic in modern Irish history. has returned to voters of all stripes to ask how they cast their ballots – and whether their highest hopes, or worst fears, were realised. Read what they had to say.

6. #BERLUSCONI: An Italian court will today reach a verdict in a trial involving the country’s former Prime Minister, Silvio Berlusconi, who stands accused of bribery. Prosecutors in the trial have asked that Berlusconi be sentenced to five years in prison, the New York Times reports.

It is one of four court proceedings being faced by the former premier.

7. #SYRIA: The International Red Cross is attempting to evacuate people from the besieged city of Homs in Syria, which has been under heavy bombardment for almost a week, reports the BBC.

US President Obama has called on the international community to send a “clear message” to President Bashar Assad – adding that it would consider “every tool available” to end the slaughter of the Syrian people, according to the Telegraph.

8. #DEBT CRISIS: The G20 are meeting in Mexico City today to discuss the global debt crisis. While the eurozone is expected to be covered in discussions, it is believed that EU leaders will be advised to step-up their handling of the crisis on their own before the IMF offers to provide any more assistance, RTÉ reports.

9. #LEGO: Lego is an underrated art-form… at least, that’s what one British A-Level student demonstrates. Harry Bosset, 17, has recreated a series of famous scenes from popular films, including Titanic, Ghost and E.T., using only Lego. Check it out:

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