Family Support Services

A referred reply was forwarded to the Deputy under Standing Order 42A

Ceisteanna (502)

Micheál Martin

Ceist:

502. Deputy Micheál Martin asked the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs if she will report on the future of the parent and infant residential unit at a centre (details supplied) in view of the fact that grounds are for sale; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [46195/19]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Children)

The centre located on the site to which the Deputy refers is in receipt of funding from a number of public bodies. Tusla, the Child and Family Agency provides funding of some €1.5 million annually for family and community services provided by the centre located on site. The parent and infant residential unit to which the Deputy refers is supported through this funding.

Tusla is currently engaging directly with the centre and with a representative of the property owners. I have asked Tusla to respond to the Deputy directly in relation to the parent and infant residential unit.

A referred reply was forwarded to the Deputy under Standing Order 42A

Family Support Services

Ceisteanna (503)

Micheál Martin

Ceist:

503. Deputy Micheál Martin asked the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs if she will report on the future of a project (details supplied) at a centre in view of the fact that the grounds are for sale; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [46196/19]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Children)

The Centre located on the site to which the Deputy refers is in receipt of funding from a number of public bodies. Tusla, the Child and Family Agency provides funding of some €1.5 million annually for family and community services provided by the centre located on site. The project to which the Deputy refers is supported through this funding.

Tusla is currently engaging directly with the Centre and with a representative of the property owners. I have asked Tusla to respond to the Deputy directly in relation to the future of the project in question.

Family Support Services

Ceisteanna (504)

Micheál Martin

Ceist:

504. Deputy Micheál Martin asked the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs if she will report on the future of a crèche (details supplied) at a centre in view of the fact that the grounds are for sale; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [46197/19]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Children)

The Bessborough Centre in Cork is a not-for-profit organisation that has operated children and family services on these premises for many years. I understand that the site was advertised for sale in 2018.

I understand that many people who work for the Bessborough Centre, or who engage with its services including the crèche, will be anxious to know what the potential sale of the property means for them.

As the Deputy is aware, I have no role in intervening with the sale of private property. However, I can confirm that the Early Learning and Care and School Age Childcare programmes operated by my Department will continue to be available to the entity which assumes the operation of the service, be that a private provider or community organisation, once it has registered with the Early Years Inspectorate of Tusla.

Any parents who are concerned that the sale of the service might impact on them should contact Cork City Childcare Committee (Cork CCC). Cork CCC may be able to assist them in locating alternative childcare places.

Departmental Offices

Ceisteanna (505)

Denis Naughten

Ceist:

505. Deputy Denis Naughten asked the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs the number of vacant desk spaces available in accommodation allocated to her Department in Civil Service accommodation outside Dublin city; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [46288/19]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Children)

My Department's office space is all located in Dublin city.

Early Childhood Care and Education

Ceisteanna (506)

Martin Heydon

Ceist:

506. Deputy Martin Heydon asked the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs the supports available for the parents of a child who is attending a preschool but does not qualify for the ECCE scheme; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [46319/19]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Children)

There are a number of financial supports available to certain families in Ireland for early learning and care which are in addition to the two year ECCE / free pre-school programme.

In September 2017 my Department introduced a non-means tested universal subsidy for all children in registered services from 6 months of age up until they become eligible for the Early Childhood Care and Education (ECCE) programme. This amounts to up to €20 a week or €1,040 per year for children in full time early learning and care.

My Department also offers targeted supports under the following programmes:

Community Childcare Subvention Plus (CCSP):

This programme provides funding support, targeting low income families in community childcare services and private childcare services. It is available to families in receipt of Department of Employment Affairs and Social Protection payments or who possess a medical card. It is available to children from six months to 15 years of age. For example, a parent in receipt of One Parent Family Payment with a medical card may receive a maximum of €145 per week per child in subsidies towards their early learning and care fees.

Training and Employment Childcare (TEC) Programmes:

These programmes provide funding support for parents participating in eligible Education and Training Boards /Solas vocational training courses, Community Employment (CE) programmes, or returning to employment. The maximum subsidy provided is €145 per child per week. These subsidies are available to children up to 15 years of age. Specific schemes included under TEC are as follows:-

- After-School Child Care Scheme(ASCC) - provides subsidies towards afterschool care for primary school children for certain categories of working parents and parents on Department of Employment Affairs and Social Protection employment programmes (not including Community Employment).

- Childcare Education and Training Support (CETS) - provides subsidies to certain training course participants on courses provided by the Education and Training Boards (ETB, formerly FAS and VEC) and Secondary Schools.

- Community Employment Childcare (CEC) - provides subsidies for early learning and care and school age childcare for children of parents who are participating on Community Employment schemes.

Community Childcare Subvention Resettlement (CCSR):

This programme provides up to 60 weeks of early learning and care and school age childcare support on a part-time basis to Programme Refugees to support their resettlement and integration into Irish society, up to 5 days per week for children aged 0 – 5 years and for primary school going children during the school holidays. The parents are not charged a fee.

Community Childcare Subvention Resettlement (Transitional) (CCSR(T)):

As part of the “Rebuilding Ireland – an Action Plan for Housing and Homelessness” the DCYA provides access to free early learning and care and school age childcare on a part-time and sessional basis for pre-school children (ages 0 – 5) and primary school-going children during the school holidays for families experiencing homelessness. In addition, a daily meal is provided for each child. The parents are not charged a fee.

National Childcare Scheme (NCS):

With the exception of the TEC schemes, no new registrations can be made on these programmes after November 15 as they will be replaced by the National Childcare Scheme (NCS) which is due to open for online applications on 20 November, with subsidies flowing from 25 November. There will be two kinds of subsidy available under the NCS:

A universal subsidy is payable for children between the ages of 24 weeks and 36 months (or until the child qualifies for the Early Childhood Care and Education programme if later) who are availing of childcare services from an approved childcare service provider or childminder. The universal subsidy is not means-tested and provides 50c per hour towards the cost of a registered childcare place for up to a maximum of 40 hours per week (maximum €20 per week per child, or €1040 per annum).

An income-related subsidy is payable for children from 24 weeks to 15 years of age who are availing of childcare services from an approved childcare service provider or childminder. The level of subsidy payable is determined by the family’s reckonable income (i.e. gross income minus tax, PRSI and other deductibles and minus any applicable multiple child discount).

Many parents availing of current targeted early learning and care and school age childcare schemes will be better off under the new NCS and able to access higher levels of subsidisation. Many others will qualify for financial support for the first time.

Immigration Policy

Ceisteanna (507)

Thomas P. Broughan

Ceist:

507. Deputy Thomas P. Broughan asked the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs the work her Department is undertaking with the Department of Justice and Equality on pathways to residency for undocumented children; the supports in place for undocumented children in care and aftercare; the number in the care of Tusla by county; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [46369/19]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Children)

As the Deputy will be aware, the Minister for Justice and Equality has primary responsibility in the area of asylum and immigration.

Tusla has for a number of years had a dedicated service for separated children seeking asylum, who may or may not be undocumented. These children can be referred to Tusla on arrival in the country by immigration officers or be brought to Ireland through resettlement programmes such as the Irish Refugee Protection Programme (IRPP).

Tusla operates an Equity of Care Principle for these children, meaning that they are provided with the same standard of care as any other child in the care of the State, with no differentiation of standard care provision, care practices, care priorities, standards or protocols.

As with other children in care, separated children seeking asylum may be placed in foster care or residential care.

Tusla supports children in acquiring documentation so that they can access all entitlements and the means of doing so may be different in each case bearing in mind the individual needs of the child. These matters are managed locally where possible or referred for legal support as required either locally or nationally.

At the end of August 2019 there were 61 children in care under the Social Work Team for Separated Children Seeking Asylum. At the end of June 2019 there were 98 young persons under this team in receipt of aftercare services, each of whom had an allocated Aftercare Worker.

The International Protection Act 2015 requires Tusla to arrange for the appointment of an employee of Tusla or such other person as it may determine to apply for international protection on behalf of a child referred to its care under that Act where it appears to Tusla on the basis of information available to it, including legal advice, that such an application should be made. The Tusla Social Work Team for Separated Children Seeking Asylum works closely with officials of the Department of Justice and Equality and the immigration service in this regard.

Child and Family Agency Data

Ceisteanna (508)

Peadar Tóibín

Ceist:

508. Deputy Peadar Tóibín asked the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs the number of children on Tusla waiting lists in each county; the average wait time in each county; the longest wait time in each county; and the social worker per referral figure in each county. [46373/19]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Children)

The Deputy is asking about an operational matter for Tusla, the Child and Family Agency. I have therefore referred the matter to Tusla, and asked that a direct reply be provided to the Deputy.

Freedom of Information Data

Ceisteanna (509)

Barry Cowen

Ceist:

509. Deputy Barry Cowen asked the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs when the disclosures log made by her Department under freedom of information was last updated; if this is in line with the disclosure policy of her Department; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [46462/19]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Children)

A revised Freedom of information requests log will be placed on the gov.ie website shortly and will be updated on a monthly basis.

Departmental Advertising Campaigns

Ceisteanna (510)

Jack Chambers

Ceist:

510. Deputy Jack Chambers asked the Minister for Children and Youth Affairs the role her Department is playing in the winter ready campaign; the expenditure her Department will incur in this campaign; and the details of expenditure on external consultancy and advertising or communication. [46623/19]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Children)

The Department of Children & Youth Affairs currently have no role in the winter ready campaign. We can confirm that no expenditure has been incurred in this campaign.

A referred reply was forwarded to the Deputy under Standing Order 42A

Town and Village Renewal Scheme

Ceisteanna (511, 512)

Dara Calleary

Ceist:

511. Deputy Dara Calleary asked the Minister for Rural and Community Development the amount of co-funding required for each project under the 2019 town and village renewal scheme; the projected source of co-funding as outlined in the application for project funding; and the projects that were not approved for funding that applied to the 2019 scheme by county in tabular form. [46014/19]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Dara Calleary

Ceist:

512. Deputy Dara Calleary asked the Minister for Rural and Community Development the number of projects approved under the town and village renewal scheme in 2018 and to date in 2019 by county in tabular form; the number of projects that were not approved by county in each year; the reason for refusal; and if there is an appeal mechanism in place to appeal refusal decisions. [46015/19]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Rural)

I propose to take Questions Nos. 511 and 512 together.

The 2019 Town and Village Renewal Scheme was launched in April of this year. Under the 2019 Scheme, grant funding of up to 80% of project costs was available; the remaining 20% of project costs must be contributed by the Local Authority and/or the community. As part of the application process each Local Authority has confirmed that this match funding is in place for all projects; the Department did not request specific details as to the source of the match funding.

There was a strong level of interest in the scheme and 309 applications in total were received for available funding of €15 million. Unfortunately, it was not possible to support all of the applicants within the budget available. The selection of projects was by means of a competitive process and on 31st October, I announced details of the 156 projects that have been approved for funding of €15 million under the 2019 scheme.

While there is no formal appeals system in place for the Town and Village Renewal Scheme, my officials are available to provide feedback to the Local Authorities in respect of any unsuccessful applications.

The number of approved and unsuccessful applications by county in 2018 and 2019 are detailed on Table 1 below. The reasons why projects were not approved for funding include the following reasons:

- the project was not eligible under the terms of the Scheme;

- the project application was withdrawn;

- the project did not score high enough to receive funding, given the budget available.

Table 2 includes a list, by county, of all of the 2019 applications that were not successful for funding.

Table 1: Number of approved and unsuccessful applications per county in 2018 an 2019

County

2018 Approved

2018 Not Approved

2019 Approved

2019 Not approved

Carlow

9

3

4

8

Cavan

7

5

9

3

Clare

4

2

6

6

Cork

10

2

9

5

Donegal

11

1

7

5

Dublin

8

3

3

9

Galway

8

4

7

5

Kerry

6

6

7

5

Kildare

8

0

4

7

Kilkenny

5

2

7

5

Laois

11

1

5

7

Leitrim

9

3

5

7

Limerick

9

3

6

6

Longford

8

4

6

6

Louth

12

0

4

8

Mayo

11

1

9

7

Meath

8

4

6

6

Monaghan

9

2

8

4

Offaly

12

0

5

6

Roscommon

7

2

7

1

Sligo

11

1

6

6

Tipperary

8

4

5

7

Waterford

9

1

5

7

Westmeath

5

7

6

4

Wexford

12

0

5

7

Wicklow

7

5

5

6

Total

224

66

156

153

Table 2: 2019 project applications that were not approved for funding:

Scheme Year

County

Town or Village

2019

Carlow

Bagenalstown

2019

Carlow

Ballinabrannagh

2019

Carlow

Ballinkillen

2019

Carlow

Ballon

2019

Carlow

Borris

2019

Carlow

Clonegal

2019

Carlow

Myshall

2019

Carlow

Rathvilly

2019

Cavan

Ballyjamesduff

2019

Cavan

Cootehill

2019

Cavan

Stradone

2019

Clare

Kilfenora

2019

Clare

Kilmihil

2019

Clare

Kilrush

2019

Clare

Scarriff

2019

Clare

Shannon Aviation Museum

2019

Clare

Tuamgraney

2019

Cork

Beal na Blath

2019

Cork

Crosshaven

2019

Cork

Killeagh

2019

Cork

Little Island

2019

Cork

Summercove

2019

Donegal

Bundoran

2019

Donegal

Carndonagh

2019

Donegal

Downings

2019

Donegal

Rathmullan

2019

Donegal

Rossnakill

2019

Dublin

Balrothery

2019

Dublin

Donabate

2019

Dublin

Garristown

2019

Dublin

Lusk

2019

Dublin

Naul

2019

Dublin

Newcastle

2019

Dublin

Oldtown

2019

Dublin

Rush

2019

Dublin

Skerries

2019

Galway

An Spideal

2019

Galway

Claregalway

2019

Galway

Clonbur /An Fhairche

2019

Galway

Glenamaddy

2019

Galway

Lawrencetown

2019

Kerry

Ballybunion

2019

Kerry

Castleisland

2019

Kerry

Fenit

2019

Kerry

Killorglin

2019

Kerry

Skellig Region

2019

Kildare

Athy

2019

Kildare

Clane

2019

Kildare

Johnstownbridge

2019

Kildare

Kildare Town

2019

Kildare

Kilmeague

2019

Kildare

Robertstown

2019

Kildare

Sallins

2019

Kilkenny

Graignamanagh

2019

Kilkenny

Hugginstown

2019

Kilkenny

Kilmacow

2019

Kilkenny

Kilnamanagh

2019

Kilkenny

Stoneyford

2019

Laois

Borris-in-Ossory

2019

Laois

Cullohill

2019

Laois

Donaghmore

2019

Laois

Killeshin

2019

Laois

Mountrath

2019

Laois

Rathdowney

2019

Laois

Timahoe

2019

Leitrim

Ballinamore

2019

Leitrim

Carrick-on-Shannon

2019

Leitrim

Dowra

2019

Leitrim

Drumshanbo

2019

Leitrim

Glenfarne

2019

Leitrim

Manorhamilton

2019

Leitrim

Tullaghan

2019

Limerick

Bruff/Lough Gur

2019

Limerick

Glin

2019

Limerick

Kilfinane

2019

Limerick

Patrickswell

2019

Limerick

Rathkeale

2019

Limerick

Templeglantine

2019

Longford

Ballinamuck

2019

Longford

Edgeworthstown

2019

Longford

Granard

2019

Longford

Mullinalaghta

2019

Longford

Newtownforbes

2019

Longford

Stonepark

2019

Louth

Ballapousta

2019

Louth

Baltray

2019

Louth

Carlingford

2019

Louth

Clogherhead

2019

Louth

Dunleer

2019

Louth

Grange

2019

Louth

Gyles Quay

2019

Louth

Stabannon

2019

Mayo

Ballintubber

2019

Mayo

Claremorris

2019

Mayo

Cong

2019

Mayo

Louisburgh

2019

Mayo

Moygownagh

2019

Mayo

Parke

2019

Mayo

Straid Village

2019

Meath

Athboy

2019

Meath

Carlanstown

2019

Meath

Drumconrath

2019

Meath

Dunsany

2019

Meath

Oldcastle

2019

Meath

Slane

2019

Monaghan

Ballinode

2019

Monaghan

Carrickmacross

2019

Monaghan

Castleblaney

2019

Monaghan

Clones

2019

Offaly

Ballinamere

2019

Offaly

Clonbullogue

2019

Offaly

Clonygowan

2019

Offaly

Kilmalogue

2019

Offaly

Lusmagh

2019

Offaly

Mucklagh

2019

Roscommon

Elphin

2019

Sligo

Aclare

2019

Sligo

Ballisodare

2019

Sligo

Carraroe

2019

Sligo

Grange

2019

Sligo

Rosses Point

2019

Sligo

Tubbercurry

2019

Tipperary

Ballynonty

2019

Tipperary

Ballyporeen

2019

Tipperary

Cahir

2019

Tipperary

Carrick-on-Suir

2019

Tipperary

Fethard

2019

Tipperary

Newport

2019

Tipperary

Tipperary

2019

Waterford

Clonea Power

2019

Waterford

Dungarvan

2019

Waterford

Mellery

2019

Waterford

Newtown & Guillamene

2019

Waterford

Portlaw

2019

Waterford

Tramore

2019

Waterford

Villierstown

2019

Westmeath

Ballinea

2019

Westmeath

Castlepollard

2019

Westmeath

Fore

2019

Westmeath

Streamstown

2019

Wexford

Ballycanew

2019

Wexford

Clohamon

2019

Wexford

Crossabeg/Balllymurn

2019

Wexford

Kilmore Village

2019

Wexford

Rathangan

2019

Wexford

Rathnure

2019

Wexford

Riverchapel

2019

Wicklow

Avoca

2019

Wicklow

Barndarrig

2019

Wicklow

Kilcoole

2019

Wicklow

Laragh

2019

Wicklow

Roundwood

2019

Wicklow

Shillelagh

Departmental Reports

Ceisteanna (513)

Shane Cassells

Ceist:

513. Deputy Shane Cassells asked the Minister for Rural and Community Development the number, date of publication and details of post-enactment reports published by his Department since March 2011, in tabular form; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [46098/19]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Rural)

My Department, which was established in July 2017, has not published any post enactment reports.

National Broadband Plan Implementation

Ceisteanna (514)

Dara Calleary

Ceist:

514. Deputy Dara Calleary asked the Minister for Rural and Community Development further to Parliamentary Question No. 573 of 9 April 2019, the status of the over 300 sites that have been identified as the first places to receive a connection under the national broadband plan. [46207/19]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Rural)

The Broadband Connection Point (BCP) initiative will see over 300 sites in remote and rural areas across the country provided with high-speed broadband as part of the National Broadband Plan (NBP). Locations chosen as BCPs will make connectivity publicly available, supporting rural communities and economies.

BCP sites might include, for instance, schools, community centres and tourist sites and access to these sites will be allowed in line with each site’s own policies. Owners of the proposed sites have been engaging with Local Authority Broadband Officers to discuss access arrangements and levels of service to be delivered to the public.

Officials from the Department of Rural and Community Development are continuing to work closely with their colleagues in the Department of Communications, Climate Action and Environment and with Local Authorities on this initiative.

Departmental Offices

Ceisteanna (515)

Denis Naughten

Ceist:

515. Deputy Denis Naughten asked the Minister for Rural and Community Development the number of vacant desk spaces available in accommodation allocated to his Department in Civil Service accommodation outside Dublin city; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [46300/19]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Rural)

My Department occupies offices in two locations, in Trinity Point, Dublin 2 and Government Buildings in Ballina, Co. Mayo.

The office space in the building in Ballina is shared between five Government Departments. In Ballina my Department currently has three desks in the space allocated to us which are not allocated to individual staff but are used by Department staff from Dublin when they attend the Ballina office. My Department is in discussions with OPW to secure additional space.

Freedom of Information Data

Ceisteanna (516)

Barry Cowen

Ceist:

516. Deputy Barry Cowen asked the Minister for Rural and Community Development when the disclosures log made by his Department under freedom of information was last updated; if this is in line with the disclosure policy of his Department; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [46474/19]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Rural)

The disclosures made by my Department under freedom of information was last updated at end of June 2019, which is in line with this Departments disclosure policy to have this information published on our website routinely.

Rural Regeneration and Development Fund Data

Ceisteanna (517)

Dara Calleary

Ceist:

517. Deputy Dara Calleary asked the Minister for Rural and Community Development the co-funding required for each project further to the recent announcement of successful project applicants to be funded under the second call for funding under the rural regeneration and development fund by county in tabular form; the projected source of co-funding as outlined in the application for project funding; and the projects in each county that were not approved for funding that applied to the second call. [46525/19]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Rural)

The Rural Regeneration and Development Fund seeks to support ambitious and strategic projects which have the potential to transform rural economies and communities. The Government has committed €1 billion over 10 years to the Fund and €315 million is allocated to the Fund for the period 2019-2022.

Under the published guidelines relating to the Fund it is stated that the Fund will provide up to 75% of the total project cost, with at least 25% to be provided in matching contributions by the applicants. A minimum of 10% of matching contributions must be in cash.

Matched funding may be in the form of a combination of wider Exchequer and/or State sector expenditure, Local Authority investment and/or land, community investment, philanthropic contributions, private sector investment (where appropriate), or other asset contributions. Funds secured from existing Department of Rural and Community Development schemes or programmes are not eligible to be used as matched funding.

The second call for Category 1 applications for the Rural Regeneration and Development Fund closed on 6th August 2019. Category 1 projects are projects which have all necessary planning and other consents in place and are ready to proceed. There was an excellent response from across the country and my Department received 69 applications for funding. I announced the successful projects from the second call on the 6th November 2019. 26 projects were approved for funding of €62 million to support projects costing €95 million.

It should be noted that the allocation of funding to successful projects under the Fund is only in principle at this time and is subject to the completion of final due diligence, including confirmation of matched funding, and oversight of any emerging procurement costs. In due course, successful applicants will enter into a contractual arrangement with the Department to deliver as planned.

Table 1 sets out projects approved under the second call, the total funding allocated, the matched funding being supplied and the source of the matched funding.

Table 2 sets out the total number of applications received under the second call, as well as the number of successful and unsuccessful applications.

Table 1. Projects approved under the Second Call with details of matched funding.

Table 1

Table 2. Number of Applications under the Second Call per County

County

No of Projects Approved

No of unsuccessful projects

No of Applications

Carlow

0

2

2

Cavan

1

2

3

Clare

1

5

6

Cork

2

2

4

Donegal

2

1

3

Galway

1

3

4

Kerry

1

5

6

Kilkenny

0

3

3

Laois

0

1

1

Leitrim

2

0

2

Limerick

0

5

5

Longford

1

0

1

Mayo

3

1

4

Meath

2

1

3

Monaghan

1

1

2

Offaly

1

2

3

Roscommon

1

1

2

Sligo

0

1

1

Tipperary

3

1

4

Waterford

1

1

2

Wexford

1

2

3

Wicklow

1

2

3

Kildare, Laois

1

0

1

Donegal, Galway, Kerry, Leitrim

0

1

1

26

43

69

Rural Regeneration and Development Fund Data

Ceisteanna (518)

Dara Calleary

Ceist:

518. Deputy Dara Calleary asked the Minister for Rural and Community Development the number of projects approved under the first and second calls for the rural regeneration and development fund by county in tabular form; the number of projects not approved by county in each year; the main reasons for refusal; and if there is a mechanism in place to appeal refusal decisions. [46526/19]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Rural)

The Rural Regeneration and Development Fund seeks to support ambitious and strategic projects which have the potential to transform rural economies and communities. The Government has committed €1 billion over 10 years to the Fund and €315 million is allocated to the Fund for the period 2019-2022.

The first call for applications for funding under the Fund was completed in February 2019. 280 applications were received for Category 1 (relating to capital projects which are fully planning and consent compliant and are ready to commence) and Category 2 (projects which require development support to become ready for Category 1 status) under the first call and 84 projects emerged as successful. The successful projects under the first call were allocated €86m in support from the Fund and will deliver a total investment of €117m.

Table 1 sets out the total number of applications under the first call, as well as the number of successful and unsuccessful applications.

The second call for Category 1 applications for the Fund closed on the 6th August. There was an excellent response from all across the country, with my Department receiving 69 applications for funding.

On November 6th in New Ross. Co. Wexford, I announced the final outcome of the second call, identifying details of 26 successful projects. The successful projects have been allocated €62m in support from the Fund and will deliver a total investment of €95m.

Table 2 sets out the total number of applications received under the second call, as well as the number of successful and unsuccessful applications.

The application process for the Fund is competitive in nature and applications undergo comprehensive scrutiny involving assessment by my Department overseen by a Project Advisory Board, which includes representatives from key Government Departments as well as independent experts. On foot of this process, a report on recommended projects is submitted to me to inform my decision in relation to the allocation of funding to successful projects.

Projects which emerge unsuccessful from this process do so because other projects are recommended for funding ahead of them, based on the assessment process detailed above and subject to budgetary constraints. My Department supplies feedback on applications as required and will shortly be scheduling a formal feedback session for all interested stakeholders. There is no appeal procedure in relation to applications which, as detailed above, are selected on foot of an independent, comprehensive and robust assessment process. Unsuccessful applicants may apply for future calls.

Table 1. Number of Applications under the First Call per County, along with number of successful and unsuccessful applications.

Table 1

Table 2. Number of Applications under the Second Call per County, along with number of successful and unsuccessful applications

County

Number of Successful Applications

Number of Unsuccessful Projects

Number of Applications

Carlow

0

2

2

Cavan

1

2

3

Clare

1

5

6

Cork

2

2

4

Donegal

2

1

3

Galway

1

3

4

Kerry

1

5

6

Kilkenny

0

3

3

Laois

0

1

1

Leitrim

2

0

2

Limerick

0

5

5

Longford

1

0

1

Mayo

3

1

4

Meath

2

1

3

Monaghan

1

1

2

Offaly

1

2

3

Roscommon

1

1

2

Sligo

0

1

1

Tipperary

3

1

4

Waterford

1

1

2

Wexford

1

2

3

Wicklow

1

2

3

Kildare, Laois

1

0

1

Donegal, Galway, Kerry, Leitrim

0

1

1

26

43

69

Rural Regeneration and Development Fund Applications

Ceisteanna (519)

Seán Fleming

Ceist:

519. Deputy Sean Fleming asked the Minister for Rural and Community Development when applications under the rural regeneration and development fund will next be approved; the number of applications received to date; if an application (details supplied) will be considered as part of this process; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [46567/19]

Amharc ar fhreagra

Freagraí scríofa (Ceist ar Rural)

Under Project Ireland 2040, the Government has committed €1 billion to the Rural Regeneration and Development Fund over a 10 year period to support rural economic development and help build strong communities. The Fund has been allocated €315m over the period 2019 to 2022.

The second call for Category 1 applications for the Fund, relating to capital projects which are fully planning and consent compliant and are ready to commence, closed on the 6th August. There was an excellent response from all across the country, with my Department receiving 69 applications for funding.

On November 6th in New Ross. Co. Wexford, I announced the final outcome of the second call, identifying details of 26 successful projects. The successful projects have been allocated €62m in support from the Fund and will deliver a total investment of €95m.

Since the establishment of the Fund, I have now approved investment from the Fund totalling €148 million for 110 projects located across every county in Ireland. The total value of the 110 projects approved under the Fund now stands at €212m.

The focus of the second call centred upon rural town and village regeneration and many of the successful projects closely reflected this vital objective. I am confident that they will deliver a significant impact in rural areas for years to come.

Unfortunately, the particular application referred to by the Deputy was unsuccessful on this occasion. However, my Department will keep all stakeholders informed of future calls under the Fund and, in respect of the now concluded second call for Category 1 applications, will be scheduling a formal feedback session to assist applicants to prepare for future calls. I also expect that a second call for Category 2 applications - projects which require development support to become ready for Category 1 status - will be announced by the end of this year.