An additional funding of almost €16 million for repairs and improvement works on our rural roads and laneways has been announced.
The funding, under the Local Improvement Scheme (LIS), will support the continued improvement of non-public roads and lanes that are not normally maintained by local authorities.
Such roads represent a vital piece of infrastructure for rural residents - providing access to homes, farms and businesses, as well as outdoor amenities such as our lakes, rivers or beaches.
The funding is more than double the allocation provided last year, and will allow local authorities to address the backlog of applications that they currently face.
The announcement means that almost €30 million has been allocated under the Local Improvement Scheme this year alone.
And almost €130 million has been invested through LIS since the scheme was re-introduced in 2017.
Minister for Rural and Community Development, Heather Humphreys TD said:
“I’m very pleased today to announce a further €16 million in funding to repair and upgrade hundreds of rural roads and laneways in towns and villages right across Rural Ireland. Good roads are absolutely vital for our rural communities and this record investment under the Local Improvement Scheme will make a huge difference in terms of access and connectivity. We are all familiar with the roads and laneways within our own communities that are full of potholes and in desperate need of repair. The funding being delivered under this scheme will help address this – benefitting so many of our families, businesses and in particular our farmers.
Minister Humphreys continued:
“As someone who grew up on a farm myself, I know all too well what it is like when a milk truck cannot gain access to collect the milk. I know too how poor quality roads in rural Ireland can negatively impact on families and businesses. That’s why the Local Improvement Scheme was re-introduced in 2017 by my predecessor and colleague, Michael Ring. Since its re-introduction, over €130 million has been invested in rural communities the length and breadth of Rural Ireland. This funding is all about making peoples’ lives that bit easier and ensuring we have good access to homes, farms, businesses and local amenities.
Minister Humphreys added:
“This additional tranche of €16 million in funding that I am announcing is on top of the €12.5 million that I allocated earlier this year. The scale of this investment is a clear example of Government’s commitment to supporting our rural communities through our five year rural development strategy, ‘Our Rural Future’. Since the Local Improvement Scheme was re-introduced in 2017, almost 4,000 roads have been funded for repair works. This has made a real difference to the lives of over 16,000 landowners and residents in rural Ireland, and many more visitors. I acknowledge that there is strong demand for this funding in many parts of the country with some local authorities having significant levels of applications on hand. And so, I am strongly encouraging these councils to utilise the funding announced today, and complete the repair works on the selected roads as soon as possible in consultation with residents and landowners.”
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