« BackCriticism of tight timeframes for government’s rural development funding

Kerry County Council entrance2Kerry councillors have criticised the tight timeframes of a new government funding stream for rural development.

The Town and Village Renewal Scheme aims to halt population decline and the closure of shops and businesses, and regenerate areas.

 

The Town and Village Renewal Scheme was launched by the government in August; submissions by county councils have to be made by the 30th of September, and projects must be largely completed by the 31st of December.

The potential allocation for each county is €380,000, and a maximum of eight projects can be funded.

Director of Services with Kerry County Council, Michael Scannell says the very tight timeframes limit the opportunities that can be availed of.

He says some 20 projects are being analysed to see if they would meet the deadlines.

He says the scheme is expected to continue in future years, so the council is to prepare applications covering a two-year period.

Sinn Féin Councillor Toireasa Ferris says many towns and villages have ideas, but weren’t aware funding would be coming on stream so have lost out in this round.

She says projects such as public toilets for Ardfert to service the cathedral and playground probably wouldn’t make the December 31st completion deadline, but could have if the council and central had made them aware in advance.