To ask the Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport if he will ensure that funding for local roads will be dramatically increased in Budget 2017; if the local improvement scheme will be extended as promised in the Programme for Government; and if he will make a statement on the matter.
– Mattie McGrath.
* For WRITTEN answer on Tuesday, 11th October, 2016.
Ref No: 29244/16
Answered by the Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport
The 2017 allocations for national, regional and local roads form part of the Budget announcement. While 2017 will see a modest increase in funding for roads, it will take some years yet under the Capital Plan to restore “steady state” funding levels for regional and local roads. The primary focus in 2017 will, therefore, have to continue to be on the maintenance and renewal of public roads. I do, however, expect that local authorities will continue to be able to use a proportion of their Discretionary Grant for the local improvement scheme.
In light of the provision in the Programme for Government indicating that, as the economy recovers, the Government will promote increased funding for Local Improvement Schemes, I will be raising the issue of increased funding in the context of the planned Mid-Term Review of the Capital Plan.