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EU Funding

Dáil Éireann Debate, Tuesday - 2 November 2021

Tuesday, 2 November 2021

Questions (1263)

Claire Kerrane


1263. Deputy Claire Kerrane asked the Minister for Rural and Community Development if she will advise on EU funding sources available to support local heritage groups and with regard to Leader allocations for local heritage groups in County Roscommon up to 2023 and as recently announced for beyond 2023; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [53112/21]

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Written answers (Question to Rural)

The social and economic development of rural Ireland is integral to the wellbeing of our country as a whole and to our quality of life. Ireland’s economy, heritage and culture is heavily dependent on the contribution of rural areas. Our Rural Future, the government’s new rural development policy, provides a framework for the development of rural Ireland over the next five years.

The LEADER programme, which is co-funded by the EU and the Exchequer, will play a key role over the lifetime of this policy. Last December, I launched the Transitional LEADER Programme which came into effect from 1 April 2021 and will run to the end of 2022, with a successor programme commencing in 2023. The programme is delivered through Local Action Groups (LAGs) in each of the 28 LEADER sub-regional areas around the country.

Funding under the LEADER programme is not targeted at any particular group or sector in rural communities. It is, rather, focused on a thematic approach to rural development under the headings of Economic Development, Enterprise Development and Job Creation; Social Inclusion; and the Rural Environment.

In order for a project to be eligible for LEADER funding, it must be compatible with the actions outlined in the approved Local Development Strategy in the area concerned, and it must comply with the Operating Rules and EU Regulations in place for the programme. Decisions on the nature of the projects to be supported and the funding to be awarded are solely a matter for each LAG.

The programme is delivered in County Roscommon by the Roscommon LAG in partnership with its Implementing Partner; Roscommon LEADER Partnership.