Tuesday, 23 July 2019

Questions (2597)

Jan O'Sullivan

Question:

2597. Deputy Jan O'Sullivan asked the Minister for Rural and Community Development when a new library facility will be established in Laytown and Bettystown, County Meath; the overall cost of the project; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [32345/19]

View answer

Written answers (Question to Rural)

My Department funds a Libraries Capital Programme that will invest around €29m in 19 projects, as well as the My Open Library service, between 2016 and 2022. The programme is currently fully committed and there is no scope to include new projects at this time.

However, my department continues to accept and assess local authority proposals on an ongoing basis as part of the Department's Four Stage Capital Works Management process, with funding for new projects considered as additional funds become available. Local authorities can also submit library development proposals as elements of broader regeneration plans under the Rural and Urban Regeneration and Development Funds. Indeed, a call for Category 1 applications under the Rural Regeneration and Development Fund, managed by my Department, is now open.

Provision of premises and facilities for the public library service is primarily a matter for local authorities in their capacity as library authorities under the Local Government Act 2001. Accordingly, the development of a new library in Laytown and Bettystown is a matter for Meath County Council in the first instance.