Tuesday, 5 November 2019

Questions (1021)

Robert Troy


1021. Deputy Robert Troy asked the Minister for Rural and Community Development if his attention has been drawn to the fact that there is a requirement for recipients of CLÁR funding to make the funded facility open to the general public unconditionally; if his attention has been further drawn to the fact that this stipulation is preventing school boards of management from applying for such funding; and if he will review this condition in respect of applications from schools, which would ensure the facility is used in the first instance by the school and thereafter by the wider community with prior agreement from the school. [45073/19]

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Written answers (Question to Rural)

My Department was established to promote rural and community development throughout Ireland. In order to do achieve this objective, funding provided to projects should have the widest possible benefit for communities. The CLÁR programme provides funding for small scale infrastructure projects in rural areas that have experienced significant levels of de-population.

Since I reintroduced the programme in 2016, funding has been provided for a range of measures to help achieve this objective, including up to €50,000 for the enhancement or development of Play Areas and Multi-Use Games Areas (MUGAs). Eligible applicants under this measure include both schools and communities.

In order to ensure that value for money is derived from funding of projects of this nature, I believe it is appropriate that such facilities should be available to the general community and I have no plans at present to review this condition. Many schools in CLÁR areas are willing to make their playground facilities available for wider community use and have consequently received support under the programme.