Independent Public Representatives Deputy Mattie McGrath and Councillors Martin Lonergan and Richie Molloy have welcomed the allocation of funding towards the Local Improvement Scheme 2018 for Tipperary County Council.
A total of €625,582 has been allocated towards the Local Improvement Scheme 2018 in Tipperary which applies to non-public accommodation roads (farm roads and certain roads serving the public) and bog roads and to undertake minor drainage improvements. The project must be of benefit to agricultural production and benefit two or more parcels of land owned or occupied by different persons and is dependent on a financial contributions from the applicants of approximately 15% of the total cost of works.
Applications closed for eligible projects on 31 January last. Commenting on the announcement Deputy McGrath said, “Throughout the negotiations for the Programme for Government, I had fought hard to have this scheme re-introduced. It gives the Local Authorities the opportunity to tackle non-public roads which would have been previously over looked and in many cases would be in extremely poor condition.
Now with the financial assistance of applicants, non-public accommodation roads, farm roads and certain roads serving the public can be strengthened and resurfaced and various drainage works can be finally carried out. I had appealed to the Department that funding for this scheme would be made available earlier in the year so that works can be carried out during the Local Authorities 2018 Road Works Programme during the spring and summer period and I am glad that this will now be the case unlike last year.
Welcoming the news, Cllr. Martin Lonergan added. “This is a really effective scheme to improve small roads, laneways and boreens which don’t come under the control of local authorities. These roads give access to homes, farmyards, agricultural land and business premises, and are often heavily used, but because they fall outside of direct local authority control, many need upgrading.
It’s only right and fair that some of the motor tax, excise duty on fuel and local property tax paid by people in rural areas is invested in the repair of shared laneways that connect their homes, farms and businesses to the public road network. I want to thank Deputy Mattie McGrath and his Rural Independent Group colleagues who pressed for its inclusion in the current Programme for a Partnership Government.”
Cllr. Richie Molloy added, “I know how important this scheme is for people who live in rural areas – and often in very remote rural areas of the Clonmel/Cahir Borough District. This funding, in conjunction with the local community’s own resources and the resources of the Local Authority will allow for the maintenance and improvement of many local roads in the District. Allocations to Local Authorities is based on geographical size. The Department will fund up to 90% of the cost where there are 5 or fewer eligible residents or 85% of the cost of an eligible road where there are 6 or more eligible residents with the remaining 10% or 15% to be provided in cash by the residents. Tipperary County Council will be asked to revert back by the 23rd of March with a list of roads projects, including estimated cost, verification of agreement of the local contribution, and number of residents, as well as a secondary list of roads which would be considered should further funding become available.”
While all three Representatives have welcomed this year’s allocation, they have been critical of Tipperary County Councils failure to apply for additional funding in the latter of 2017 which would have seen further non-public roads benefitting under the LIS Scheme. No excuse was forthcoming from the Local Authority while many Councils across the Country benefitted from extra monies.