Grant assistance of up to EUR10.392m has been allocated for the carrying out of major improvements to the existing Ennistymon, Miltown Malbay and Liscannor sewerage schemes and the provision, for the first time, of a public sewerage scheme for Spanish Point. Meanwhile, grant assistance of up to EUR6.025m has been allocated for the carrying out of major improvements to the existing Ballyvaughan and Corofin Sewerage Schemes and the provision, also for the first time, of a public sewerage scheme in Doolin.
Despite receiving written confirmation from the relevant section of Department of the Environment today, Minister Killeen explained that he has asked Minister John Gormley to confirm that Lahinch is also included in the approved bundle.
Minister Killeen praised the Minister for the Environment for allocating the necessary funds despite not having approved the scheme designs.
“Minister John Gormley has short-circuited the process that took years in the case of Quilty, Mullagh and Feakle”, explained Minister Killeen.
The Clare T.D. added “By announcing the provision of grant assistance the Minister has enabled Clare County Council to immediately begin to recast the design of the schemes in a more economically efficient way. This gesture reflects the Minister’s awareness of the need to provide new infrastructure and his reluctance to engage in a protracted exchange of proposal and counter-proposal between his Department and the Local Authority without any definite progress being made.”
He said, “This grant assistance will give Clare County Council a clear structure within which it can immediately begin to recast the design of the schemes in a more economically efficient way and in line with the national affordability framework for new water services infrastructure.”
“Considerable progress has been made in Corofin with the cooperation of developers and local landowners. I trust that Clare County Council will be enabled to progress the schemes in all other areas still awaiting such developments given a similar level of cooperation”, stated Minister Killeen.
Minister Killeen stated that the provision of both sewerage schemes would bring similar benefits to those experienced in Lisdoonvarna and surrounding areas following the completion of the local Sewage and Water Schemes.
“For many years, the lack of adequate infrastructure in North Clare had led to pressure being placed on rural areas in relation to development with more and more people applying to the County Council for permission to build and to provide their own septic tank and water supply”, he said.
Minister Killeen continued, “I believe that the approval of Clare County Council’s revised designs allowing for the commencement of work on the schemes will relieve much of this pressure and provide for the rural regeneration and sustained economic development of the North Clare region. Equally, with ever increasing numbers of tourists visiting this part of the County, it is imperative that the necessary infrastructure is in place. After all, a sustainable tourism industry is of importance to the future economic well-being of the entire County”, added Minister Killeen.
Meanwhile, the Department of the Environment, Heritage and Local Government has approved an additional allocation of EUR2.86 million to Clare County Council for its Water Conservation Programme. This brings the Council’s overall grant from the Department for this Programme to EUR4.86m.
According to Minister Tony Killeen, “In common with other areas, Clare’s public water supply infrastructure suffers from high levels of leakage and, on average, up to 50% of the water produced is unaccounted for. This grant allocation will enable Clare County Council to tackle water leakage, unauthorised connections and wastage of this precious resource. Progress on these fronts will also help reduce abstractions from raw water sources, cut water production and treatment costs and will result in both environmental and economic benefits.”
Minister Killeen said that the grant assistance would enable Clare County Council to complete ongoing studies of the existing infrastructure and to carry out leakage detection and reduction works.
“The additional funding will help reduce the amount of water that needs to undergo expensive treatment, will result in significant savings to the Council and ensure an improved service to consumers throughout the county”, concluded the Minister.
Notes to Editor:
- Tony Killeen T.D., Minister of State at the Department of Environment Heritage and Local Government and Communication Energy and Natural Resources with special responsibility for Environment and Energy, is available for interview and further comment on 0035387-2525304. Alternatively please contact Mark Dunphy of Dunphy Public Relations on 00353868534900 or firstname.lastname@example.org
- High resolution image of Minister Killeen available on request.