The Social Inclusion and Community Activation Programme, SICAP, 2018-2022 receives co-funding under the ESF Programme for Employability, Inclusion and Learning, PEIL. Funding of up to €60 million for the programme has been approved by the European Commission, with €30 million in ESF funding being matched by €30 million Exchequer co-funding.
A number of steps must be taken in order to claim ESF funding for the programme. In this regard, my Department is working closely with the Department of Education and Skills, the ESF managing authority in Ireland, which has submitted an application to the European Commission this month for approval of a repayment method so that the draw down process from the ESF can begin. The repayment method is due to be approved by a Commission delegated regulation in quarter four of 2019. No refund of expenditure is possible until this regulation is approved which means that, to date, there has been no draw down of funding from the ESF for SICAP. In the first quarter of 2020 a claim will be submitted to the European Commission for reimbursement of expenditure for 2018 and 2019, up to the approved budget of €20 million per year. This will be made up of €10 million in ESF financing and €10 million in national co-funding.