Wednesday, 10 February 2021

Questions (283, 288, 289, 310, 311)

Seán Sherlock

Question:

283. Deputy Sean Sherlock asked the Minister for Housing, Local Government and Heritage if he will address a matter raised in correspondence (details supplied). [6332/21]

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Seán Canney

Question:

288. Deputy Seán Canney asked the Minister for Housing, Local Government and Heritage the rationale for allowing social housing sites to remain open; if he will consider reopening private housing estates to allow private and social houses to be classified as essential; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [6447/21]

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Seán Canney

Question:

289. Deputy Seán Canney asked the Minister for Housing, Local Government and Heritage if he will allow construction work to recommence on improvement works supported through the housing aid for older people, mobility aid and housing adaptation grants; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [6449/21]

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Thomas Gould

Question:

310. Deputy Thomas Gould asked the Minister for Housing, Local Government and Heritage if financial support is available to those who have had renovations or house builds delayed due to Covid-19 restrictions and have incurred additional financial delays due to same such as extended renting. [6585/21]

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Thomas Gould

Question:

311. Deputy Thomas Gould asked the Minister for Housing, Local Government and Heritage if consideration will be given to those renovating single properties who are unable to occupy the properties due to the continued construction and renovation on the properties under current Covid-19 restrictions. [6586/21]

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Written answers (Question to Housing)

I propose to take Questions Nos. 283, 288, 289, 310 and 311 together.

The Government announced that additional public health restrictions would apply under Level 5 of the Plan for Living with COVID-19 on 6 January 2021. The additional restrictions required all construction activity to cease from 6pm on Friday 8 January, with a number of exceptions. These measures are set out in the Health Act 1947 (Section 31A - Temporary Restrictions) (Covid-19) (No. 10) Regulations 2020 (as amended).

These exemptions included certain social housing developments which meet criteria outlined in the regulations and for housing adaptation grants where the person in respect of whom the grant is payable consents to such works of adaptation being undertaken in his or her home.

With regard to private housing development, the Regulations provide that housing and construction works ongoing on 8 January could continue where the works required to render the property capable of occupation were scheduled for completion by 31 January 2021

On 26 January, the Government announced that the current level 5 restrictions will remain until 5 March 2021. Accordingly, no extension has been provided beyond 31 January in respect of private housing development. These restrictions on construction will remain in place until 5 March.