Wednesday, 23 January 2019

Ceisteanna (40, 45)

Tony McLoughlin

Ceist:

40. Deputy Tony McLoughlin asked the Minister for Rural and Community Development the funding provided in 2018 to the public participation networks; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [2804/19]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Pat Deering

Ceist:

45. Deputy Pat Deering asked the Minister for Rural and Community Development the funding provided in 2018 to the public participation networks; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [2994/19]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Rural)

I propose to take Questions Nos. 40 and 45 together.

Since 2015, funding of up to €50,000 per annum has been allocated by my Department in respect of each Public Participation Network (PPN), provided this was supplemented by a minimum of €30,000 per annum from each local authority’s own resources. This funding is to be used for the cost of the employment of a Resource Worker, and ongoing operational costs such as office accommodation and training.

In addition to individually funding each PPN, my Department has provided indirect funding of up to €100,000 annually for the general support of the PPN process. This funding is used to support training for PPNs, CPD (Continuous Professional Development) events arranged specifically for Resource Workers, training of local authority staff dealing with PPNs, technical and on-going support for the PPN’s national database, production of an Annual Report, the costs associated with holding the Annual PPN Conference and other associated costs arising in association with the National PPN Advisory Group.

One of the recommendations contained in the latest Annual Report and addressed at the 2018 PPN Conference was the need for extra administrative resources to support the PPN development role. Additional funding has been provided by my Department which will enable PPNs to employ a Support Worker in 2019 specifically to provide that extra administrative support.

Additional recommendations relating to promoting public awareness and understanding of the PPNs, to be developed through a Communications Strategy along with a review of the PPN Guidelines, will also be supported by my Department in 2019.