Some €532,000 in funding has been secured for Local Improvement Schemes in Sligo and Leitrim, Fine Gael TD Tony McLoughlin has said.
Minister Michael Ring, Minister for Rural and Community Development, has approved over €10 million in funding for Local Authorities under the Local Improvement Scheme (LIS) to support the improvement of non-public rural roads.
The funding will allow for the repair and improvement of small roads and laneways leading to local people’s homes and businesses that are not under the normal maintenance of the Local Authorities.
McLoughlin said, “I am delighted that €532,000 in funding has been secured for Local Improvement Schemes here in Sligo and Leitrim servicing over 3,300 km of our rural roads. In Sligo €282,000 has been allocated for 1,836 km of local road improvement and €250,000 in Leitrim for 1,558 km.
“We in Fine Gael know just how the important of the Local Improvement Scheme for people who live in rural Ireland.
“These roads provide vital access to homes and farms as well as amenities such as lakes, rivers or the sea.
“The Department of Rural and Community Development will provide up to 90% of the funding through the Local Authorities, with the remaining contribution coming from local residents, or Local Authorities in the case of roads leading to public amenities.
“Local Authorities will be be informed of allocation today and will be asked to revert with details of their improvement projects to the Department of Rural and Community Development by the 23rd of March,” Deputy McLoughlin said.
Minister Ring said: “The upkeep of these roads is a priority for people who live in rural Ireland and this funding, in conjunction with the local community's own resources and the resources of the local authorities will allow for the maintenance and improvement of many more local roads.
““I cannot overstate how important local connectivity is in order to enable rural Ireland to function well. The Action Plan for Rural Development prioritises improving rural infrastructure and connectivity and continuing to support an LIS scheme is just one of the measures we are taking in that regard.
“On that note, I am delighted to see that in the recently announced Capital Plan in Project Ireland 2040, €4.5 billion has been allocated for the maintenance and improvement of local and regional roads.
“Project Ireland 2040 also contains €1 billion extra funding for investment in rural communities through the Department of Rural and Community Development.
“This Rural Regeneration Fund will lead to significant investment in rural towns, villages and townlands, meaning greater connectivity and enhanced amenities for rural communities.”