The improvement and maintenance of regional and local roads is the statutory responsibility of the relevant local authority in accordance with the provisions of Section 13 of the Roads Act 1993. State grants, where applicable, are intended to supplement the funding allocated to the maintenance and improvement of roads by local authorities from their own resources.
The National Development Plan (NDP) does provide for the gradual build up in funding for the road network but funding is not yet at the level needed for the adequate maintenance and renewal of regional and local roads. For this reason the primary focus for capital investment continues to be the maintenance and renewal of the network with some limited investment in road improvement schemes. In this context 12 regional and local road improvement projects were identified for development, subject to necessary approvals, in the NDP and the construction of a Coonagh to Knockalisheen Distributor Road is one of those schemes.
Under the Public Spending Code, capital projects are subject to review and approval at a number of stages. As required under the Code Limerick City and County Council has submitted a recommendation regarding the award of a contract for the construction of the main scheme and I am considering the project at present.