Wednesday, 26 June 2019

Ceisteanna (226, 233, 234)

Imelda Munster

Ceist:

226. Deputy Imelda Munster asked the Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport the 2019 budget allocation to investment in regional and local roads; and the estimated cost of increasing this figure by 5%. [27067/19]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Imelda Munster

Ceist:

233. Deputy Imelda Munster asked the Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport the categories of allocated funding for roads (details supplied); and the funding allocated under each of the categories in each of the years 2016 to 2018 and to date in 2019. [27074/19]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Imelda Munster

Ceist:

234. Deputy Imelda Munster asked the Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport the spend on regional and local road funding for 2018 and to date in 2019; and the spend on maintenance, upgrades, new roads and other relevant spending headings relating to regional and local roads. [27075/19]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Transport)

I propose to take Questions Nos. 226, 233 and 234 together.

The improvement and maintenance of regional and local roads is the statutory responsibility of the relevant local authority in accordance with the provisions of Section 13 of the Roads Act 1993. Works on those roads are funded from the Council's own resources supplemented by State road grants. Details of the regional and local road grant allocations and payments to local authorities are outlined in the regional and local road grant booklets which are available in the Oireachtas Library.

The tables included in the payment and allocation booklets outline expenditure by type of grant programme. The total investment in regional and local roads this year is €483.4 million and the estimated cost of increasing this by 5% is €24.2 million. For the Deputy's information an explanation of the purpose of the main Regional and Local Road Grant Programmes is set out below, along with a table showing spend to date in 2019 in these grant categories:

Restoration Maintenance (RM): The purpose of the RM grant is to protect the structural integrity of the road by way of surface dressing through the sealing of the road surface. The purpose of restoration maintenance is to maintain the asset before it requires improvement.

Restoration Improvement Grant (RI): The RI grant programme is the main road strengthening programme and caters for surface restoration, pavement overlay works, complete road rehabilitation works and for drainage works where required.

Discretionary Grant (DG): Councils have discretion in spending these grants for improvement and maintenance works subject to selecting from a list of eligible works. However Councils are requested to prioritise projects which involve strengthening works, remedying road defects, winter maintenance and drainage works.

Bridge Rehabilitation (BR): This programme allows local authorities to apply for monies to undertake bridge rehabilitation works.

Safety Improvement Works (BS) : This programme allows local authorities to apply for monies to undertake safety improvement works.

Community Involvement Scheme (CIS): The programme facilitates community involvement in repair and improvement of roads.

Drainage Programme: The purpose of this grant is to promote network resilience.

A pilot scheme has been implemented to provide assistance to local authorities specifically for the maintenance of Former National (FN) roads.

Specific Grant and Strategic Grants: The Department no longer seeks annual applications from local authorities in respect of the Specific (road improvement schemes costing up to €5m.) and Strategic (improvement schemes costing over €5m.) grant programmes. Instead it considers projects on a case by case basis taking into account the availability of funding and the outcome of project appraisals.

Severe Weather: Arising from a commitment made regarding flood damage to RLR in Donegal in 2017, provision is being made to meet outstanding repair costs.

Grant Category

2019 Spend to Date €

Restoration Improvement

34,289,605

Restoration Maintenance

3,736,545

Supplementary RM

346,743

Bridge Rehabilitation

1,033,425

Safety Improvement Works

396,697

Community Involvement Scheme

1,639,893

Discretionary Grant

38,289,506

Drainage Works

2,623,842

Former National Roads

3,226

Specific Improvement Grants

1,685,817

Strategic RLR Grants

13,677,642

Severe Weather

574,596

As regards national roads, within its annual budget, allocations to individual local authorities is a matter for Transport Infrastructure Ireland (TII). I have, therefore, referred the Deputy's Questions to TII for direct reply. Please advise my private office if you don't receive a reply within 10 working days.