Tuesday, 3 November 1992
Dáil Éireann Debate
54. Mrs. T. Ahearn asked the Minister for the Marine the plans, if any, he has to provide finance, from either national funds or EC Structural Funds, to upgrade harbours and piers which are not designated under the Harbours Act, 1946.
Minister for the Marine (Dr. Woods): My Department already provide substantial funds for the development of harbours  which are not designated under the 1946 Act. In particular my Department owns and manages five major fishery harbour centres at strategic locations around the Irish Coast, namely Howth, Dunmore East, Castletownbere, Rossaveel and Killybegs. Works at these harbours are funded directly by my Department. I might add at this point that it is my intention to designate Dingle Harbour as the sixth fishery harbour centre. As the Deputy will be aware, substantial State investment has been made in this harbour over the last few years and it is now one of our top fishing ports. The necessary legislation is being drafted by my Department.
My Department also grant-aids work at other fishery harbours, which are generally owned and maintained by local authorities. The level of grant aid made available varies by geographic location. The east and south east coasts attract 50 per cent aid levels and the west and south west coasts attract 75 per cent aid levels.
My Department is currently implementing a Fishery Harbour Development Programme which covers the years 1989-93. The programme which was drawn up following consultations with maritime local authorities provides for the development of all the five fishery harbour centres owned by my Department as well as providing grant aid for a number of selected harbours, most of which are owned by the local authorities. The funds allocated to my Department are intended for capital development works at harbours rather than maintenance and repair works.
Programme expenditure is financed by the Exchequer and attracts EC funding through the Structural Funds — the Rural Development Operational Programme — and an EC Structures Funding Mechanism (4028/86) which finances the provision of facilities at fish landing places. The Fishery Harbour Development Programme 1989-93 involves the expenditure of £15 million pounds on infrastructural improvements at selected harbours, of which £7.5 million is being provided from the EC.
 During 1992 the following works were undertaken at my Department's fishery harbour centres: Howth, County Dublin, design and commencement of auction hall construction; Killybegs, County Donegal, workshop construction; Rossaveal, County Galway, dredging work completed and pier construction underway; Dunmore, East, County Wexford, fencing erected, garage built and fendering survey completed; Castletownbere, County Cork, contract awarded to re-roof the auction hall.
In addition to expenditure at the fishery harbour centres, works were also undertaken at the following fishery harbours in 1992: Greencastle, County Donegal, pier construction; Roundstone, County Galway, pier reconstruction; Dingle, County Kerry, harbour development; Kilmore Quay, County Wexford, site investigation completed; Clogherhead, County Louth, model study/site investigation; Carrigaholt/Doonbeg County Clare, survey/site investigation; Crosshaven, County Cork, site investigation; Darby's Point, County Mayo, site investigation; Duncannon, County Wexford, hydrographic survey/site investigation; Renard, County Kerry, ESBI report commissioned; Keelbeg, County Cork, design work completed; Burtonport, County Donegal, site investigation; Cleggan, County Galway, repairs to 1902 Act Pier.
My Department is currently updating its Fishery Harbour Development Programme for the period 1994-97. To this end maritime local authorities and harbour authorities were invited to submit proposals for harbour developments, in the fisheries interest, for which they are prepared to make funds available over the period of the programme. The submissions received by my Department are currently being examined with a view to their inclusion in the new programme.
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