Thursday, 6 December 2018

Ceisteanna (252)

Róisín Shortall


252. Deputy Róisín Shortall asked the Minister for Rural and Community Development the grant and funding schemes operated by his Department; the value of each scheme; and the basis or criteria used for the allocation of funding in respect of each scheme. [51411/18]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Rural)

The grant and funding schemes operated by my Department; the value of each scheme; and the basis or criteria used for the allocation of funding in respect of each scheme are listed in the table. Further details relating to eligibility criteria and making applications for funding are available on my Department's website.

Name of Grant/Funding scheme operated

Value (in 2018 unless stated)

Allocation criteria

Rural Regeneration and Development Fund

€1 billion over the period 2019 to 2027, with initial funding of €315 million allocated to the Fund on a phased basis over the period 2019-2022.

In general, decisions in relation to the Fund are based on the extent to which proposals deliver on the objectives for rural Ireland in the National Planning Framework.

This is demonstrated through:

the relevance of the proposals to one or more of the National Strategic Outcomes of Project Ireland 2040;

the extent to which proposals are collaborative in nature, gaining the buy-in of relevant stakeholders;

the strategic vision set out in proposals and their consistency with County Development Plans, Local Economic and Community Plans, Regional Spatial and Economic Strategies, etc.; and

the additionality and value for money delivered by proposals; and the demonstration of a sustainable impact on the social or economic development of rural communities.

DRCD partial funding to 10 local authorities to support the employment of Atlantic Economic Corridor Officers

The full year payment from this Department for each Atlantic Economic Corridor Officer would be €30,000.

These payments are allocated on the basis of these Local Authorities being part of the Atlantic Economic Corridor. The amount paid in 2018 will be on a pro rata basis starting from the date that the Local Authority designated an official to be an Atlantic Economic Corridor Officer. The local authorities in the AEC are – Donegal County Council, Leitrim County Council, Sligo County Council, Roscommon County Council, Mayo County Council, Galway County Council, Galway City Council, Clare County Council, Limerick City and County Council, Kerry County Council.

Demonstration Project Payments


Successful Demonstration Projects would aim to improve mobile phone and broadband connectivity and services in rural Ireland and support economic and social development in all regions.

Digital Innovation Programme 1.0


The DIP is designed to encourage local authority led projects that support digital development. Projects will promote, support, or otherwise advance at least one of the seven pillars of digital maturity. Projects will provide innovative digital solutions to local issues, or identify solutions to digital deficits and should be scalable and replicable by other local authorities. An Evaluation Panel was held to assess each project and to select successful projects, in line with the scheme criteria.

Capital Funding for Social Enterprises Under Dormant Accounts Fund

€2 million

Grants available for capital projects through open competitive application process to existing social enterprises that operated a minimum of 18 months. All applicants are appraised using a number of selection criteria and must:

Demonstrate how the project will meet the objectives and principles of Dormant Accounts Fund;

Identify and evidence the need for the project;

Demonstrate the value for money in terms of cost and the social and economic benefits of the project; and

Demonstrate organisational capacity managing public funding and managing the delivery of projects, and be able to evidence the financial governance and controls are in place.


€250 million over the period 2014-2020

All projects funded by LEADER must be in line with the Local Development Strategy (LDS) for each of the 29 sub-regional areas and are selected by Local Action Groups established in each area.

LCDC Additional Staff Resources (payments by DRCD to Local Authorities)


This relates to a funding contribution from this Department towards the cost of additional staff to support the community function in local authorities. It is expected that these posts will continue to support the new Local Community Development Committee arrangements and the implementation of Local Economic and Community Plans, in particular.

SICAP – social inclusion and community activation programme

€190 million over period 2018-2022 and €38.027 million in 2018.

Funding is allocated to Local Community Development Committees who in turn fund contracted Programme Implementers. A methodology using the Pobal-Hasse deprivation index is used to allocate funding.

Community Enhancement Programme

€12.5 million

The Programme provides capital funding to communities across Ireland to enhance facilities in disadvantaged areas. It addresses disadvantage as identified in each area's Local Economic and Community Plan. A methodology using the Pobal-Hasse deprivation index and census data is used to allocate the funding to each Local Authority area, and it is then administered locally by the Local Community Development Committees.

Grants to animal welfare groups for rehoming or welfare of dogs


Funding is provided to animal welfare groups to support them in work such as their ongoing neutering and rehoming programmes. This is consistent with Section 33 of the Control of Dogs Act 1986.

Libraries ICT Funding


Allocation based on applications received from Local Authorities.

Libraries Lease Payments


Circular LSS 05/09 stated that the libraries in receipt of a 50% library lease subsidy as of 31 December 2008 would continue at the current rate or lower.

Libraries Capital Programme

c.€1 million

The Libraries Capital Building Programme committed almost €29m to 19 capital projects and the roll-out of My Open Library. Allocations were based on available funding, population of the catchment area, size and capacity of existing library and readiness to proceed.

Community Services Programme (CSP)

€44 million

The CSP supports around 400 community organisations to provide local services through a social enterprise model with funding provided as a contribution to the cost of a manager and an agreed number of full-time equivalent positions.

Scheme to Support National Organisations

€16,660,913 over the period 2016-2019

The Scheme to Support National Organisations in the Community and Voluntary Sector (SSNO) is a key element of the State's support for the role of the sector in contributing to the development of strong and vibrant civil society and in improving outcomes for those most disadvantaged. This scheme provides multi-annual funding towards core costs of national organisations in the sector, with a focus on organisations that provide supports to those who are disadvantaged.

Seniors Alert Scheme


Since September 2015, personal monitored alarms for vulnerable older people are funded through Pobal and made available through community, voluntary and not-for-profit organisations registered with Pobal under the Seniors Alert Scheme. Funding is made available by this Department.


€11.8 million

CLÁR (Ceantair Laga Árd-Riachtanais) a targeted investment programme for rural areas. The programme provides funding for small scale infrastructural projects in disadvantaged rural areas that have experienced significant levels of depopulation. Applications from Local Authorities and voluntary groups under the 2018 CLÁR programme were assessed to determine whether they were eligible under the scheme criteria.

Town and Village Renewal Scheme

€21.3 million

Applications from Local Authorities for the 2018 Town and Village Renewal Scheme were assessed by my officials to determine whether they were eligible under the scheme criteria, and whether all necessary supporting documentation, as required in the guidelines, was provided with funding being allocated taking into consideration the funding available in the Department.

Local Improvement Scheme

€20.8 million

County allocations under the 2018 LIS programme were calculated taking into consideration the funding available and the size of the county. In addition, a minimum allocation of €250,000 and maximum cap of €1 million were applied in the distribution model. The selection of the roads to benefit under the scheme is entirely a matter for the relevant County Councils to decide, in line with the scheme's criteria.

2018 & 2017 Outdoor Recreation Infrastructure Scheme

€9.9 million (2018 Measures 1 & 3); and €2.2 million (2017 Measure 2)

Applications from Local Authorities, Local Development Companies and State Agencies under the 2018 ORIS programme were assessed by my officials to determine whether they were eligible under the scheme criteria, and whether all necessary supporting documentation, as required in the guidelines, was provided with funding allocated taking into consideration the funding available in the Department and the quality of the applications received.

Walks Scheme

€1.8 million

Funding is allocated to landholders on approved walks based on the number of hours work required on the section of walks as agreed with the Rural Recreation Officer, subject to a maximum of 200 hours work. The value of these hours is calculated with reference to the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine's own Labour Rate.

Tidy Towns

€1.4 million

The TidyTowns Grant is administered by Pobal on behalf of the Department, to be eligible for the TidyTowns Grant. TidyTowns Committees would have had to enter the SuperValu TidyTowns Competition in the last 3 years of 2018, 2017 and 2016. Entitlement to the grant will be paid based on what population category they are in.