I do not doubt that the committee dealing with the affairs of Tuam Stadium is outstanding. I would not deny for a moment that the members of the committee do a considerable amount of voluntary work. Having been to Tuam Stadium, I agree it is a fine facility.
The difficulty we face in this regard relates to competing priorities. Pearse Stadium receives priority under the regional sports grants programme because it is the county ground of County Galway, as I have said. It has the priority backing of the Galway county board, the provincial council and the GAA's central council.
Tuam, which is designated as a hub town under the national spatial strategy, has certainly not been overlooked by the Department of Arts, Sport and Tourism. Three of the four applications which were submitted by interests in Tuam under the 2004 sports capital programme were successful. Three projects were provisionally granted funding, but the fourth project was not granted funding because it did not comply with the relevant conditions.
As Deputy McHugh said, Tuam is designated as a disadvantaged area under the sports capital programme because it is included in strand 2 of the RAPID programme. Applications from Tuam under the sports capital programme were prioritised within County Galway for that reason. Some €323,000 was provisionally allocated to the three successful projects in Tuam under the 2004 programme. My colleague, the Minister for Community, Rural and Gaeltacht Affairs, has allocated top-up funding of a further €96,000 to the three projects under the RAPID programme.
Deputy McHugh is aware that I have sanctioned a grant of €3.8 million to Galway County Council for the replacement of the existing swimming pool in Tuam. Some €960,000 of the grant has been paid to the council to date and construction work on the project is ongoing. I do not doubt that sporting and recreational facilities in Tuam and throughout County Galway have been greatly enhanced in 2004 as a result of Government funding.
The funding allocated to the Galway county board has been more than twice that given to other GAA county boards, with the exception of the Limerick county board which was given €1.88 million for the development of the Gaelic Grounds in Limerick city. Deputy McHugh can be consoled by the fact that his constituency is in pole position. We will examine whether we can provide further assistance this year and reconsider the issues relating to Tuam. I assure the Deputy that, as someone who supports Tuam and the west of Ireland, I will put my money where my mouth is.