In accordance the National Lottery Act 2013, the following sectoral areas are funded under the Good Cause provision of the Act:
a) sport and recreation;
b) national culture and heritage (including the Irish language);
c) health of the community;
d) youth, welfare and amenities;
f) natural environment;
The Act also provides that the proceeds may be applied to such other purposes, if any, as the Government may determine from time to time. Funding is provided by the Oireachtas, in accordance with the Act, through expenditure subheads which form part of Departmental Programmes.
For well over a decade, the total allocation for these subheads has exceeded the amount available from the National Lottery. These subheads are described as being part-funded by the National Lottery and the balance of the expenditure allocation for the subheads comes from normal Exchequer sources.
All expenditure under these sub-heads, including that funded by the Lottery, counts towards the Government’s expenditure ceiling in the year in question. As such, decisions on funding of Good Causes are taken as part of the normal Budgetary process in line with Government decisions on overall expenditure and Departmental priorities.
Each Department and Office that receives moneys from the National Lottery fund will subsequently receive grant applications from the members of the public and groups, and each organisation is responsible for processing applications, distribution of funding and reporting on same.
Each Department and Office is also subject to audit from the Comptroller and Auditor General, who provide independent assurance that public funds and resources are used in accordance with the law, managed to good effect and properly accounted for. All Departments and Offices must also comply with the DPER Circular 13/2014 - Management of and Accountability for Grants from Exchequer Funds in regard to the payment of grants.
A breakdown by Department of all the expenditure areas that are supported through National Lottery proceeds is set out in Appendix 1 of the Annual Revised Estimates for Public Services.