The Local and Community Development Programme (LCDP) is the largest social inclusion intervention, of its kind, in the State. The current Programme officially ended at the end of 2013 having operated for four years. It is being implemented by the Local Development Companies (LDCs) on a transitional basis for 2014 pending the roll-out of a new Programme in January 2015. Management of current contracts and Programme oversight will transfer to the Local Community Development Committees (LCDCs) of the Local Authorities from 1 July next. The new Programme will be subject to the EU procurement Directive, and the competitive process for it will be open to LDCs, other not-for-profit community groups and commercial firms that can provide the services to be tendered for, to deliver the new Programme.
All proposals received will be assessed in accordance with the assessment criteria notified with the tender documentation and the contract or contracts will be awarded on the basis of that assessment. While I cannot pre-empt the outcome of such a procurement process, I expect, given their experience, that LDCs will apply to deliver the Programme in their areas.
My Department has no role in the internal operations of LDCs and, therefore, does not have a role in relation to staff or employment matters, which are for the Board of the company, as the employer, to manage. Each funding Department is responsible for its own funding and contractual arrangements with the LDCs. While business continuity remains a key concern for all stakeholders it is not possible to predict what impact, if any, the outcome of the competitive process for the new Programme will have with regard to those entities, which are independent limited companies.