I propose to take Questions Nos. 82 and 83 together.
The Government has recognised the importance of Morton Stadium, Santry, to athletics through significant financial support in recent years. Since 2002, the Irish Sports Council has made an annual financial contribution towards the running costs of the stadium, amounting in total to just over €1 million. In addition, funding in excess of €3 million has been provided in capital grants through my Department for improvement of the stadium's facilities in recent years.
Applications for funding under the 2008 Sports Capital Programme were invited through advertisements in the Press on 13th and 14th of January and the deadline for receipt of applications was 29th February for paper-based applications and 7th March for on-line applications. All applications received before the deadline, including an application in respect of Morton Stadium, are currently being evaluated against the Programme's assessment criteria, which are outlined in the guidelines, terms and conditions of the Programme. I intend to announce the grant allocations for the Programme as soon as possible after the assessment process has been completed.
I understand that discussions are taking place between the relevant stakeholders of Morton Stadium with a view to agreeing new arrangements for the management of the stadium, whereby the Athletics Association of Ireland (AAI) will take over responsibility for the day-to-day management of the stadium from Fingal County Council. The proposed new arrangements aim to provide for a more focused and efficient management structure for the stadium to enable it to continue its important role as the national athletics stadium and ensure its ongoing availability for use by the athletics community, especially elite athletes.