In my role as Minister for Public Expenditure and Reform I am responsible for setting the overall capital allocations across Departments and for monitoring monthly expenditure at a Departmental level. Responsibility for the management of individual projects rests with the relevant sponsoring Department or Agency.
Government has agreed to reallocate €75 million, from within the existing €7.3 billion capital allocation for 2019, to accommodate the additional funding requirements for the National Children’s Hospital this year. The reallocation will apply to projects such as the A5 Motorway in Northern Ireland, which is paused due to external issues. The Department of Health will also re-profile €24 million in capital funding across both 2019 and 2020 to facilitate multi-annual management of projects and works within the capital envelopes and to ensure the timely delivery of the National Children's Hospital project. A full list of the adjustments is set out as follows;
- re-scheduling of €27 million arising in relation to the A5 Motorway in Northern Ireland;
- re-scheduling of €10 million arising in relation to the National Forensic Science Laboratory;
- advance payment of a sum of €10 million from the Department of Education and Skills in respect of higher education facilities at the National Children’s Hospital;
- an updating of the scheduled draw-down of €16 million from the two Project Ireland 2040 Regeneration Funds, which are being profiled for expenditure throughout the course of both 2019 and 2020 without delays in project planning, design and delivery;
- re-profiling of payments of €4 million under certain programmes of investment in Communications, Climate Action & Environment;
- €3 million from the re-profiling of investment under the Flood Risk Management Programme of the Office of Public Works to allow for capacity to be built up over the course of the NDP period;
- revision of the schedule of drawdown of funding in the PER and Finance Groups of Votes totalling €3 million; and
- €2 million through changes to the timing of payments relating to certain capital works by the Department of Culture, Heritage and the Gaeltacht, with full project delivery scheduled across both 2019 and 2020.
While it is important to recognise and acknowledge the increased costs of the National Children’s Hospital project it is equally important to acknowledge the many projects that have been delivered on time and on budget through Project Ireland 2040.
We are continuing important investment programmes for roads and light rail, improving our environment, with 90 new schools under construction in 2019 and 700 benefiting from minor improvements. Investment will provide 10,000 social housing units and support better health outcomes with primary care facilities to be opened or upgraded in 18 locations nationwide.