Tuesday, 11 May 2010
Dáil Eireann Debate
250. Deputy Bernard J. Durkan asked the Minister for Community, Rural and Gaeltacht Affairs his plans for the operation and development of the CLÁR programme for the remainder of 2010; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [19337/10]
Minister for Community, Rural and Gaeltacht Affairs (Deputy Pat Carey): In 2010, the CLÁR Programme will continue to provide funding and co-funding to Government Departments, State agencies and local authorities to accelerate investment in selected priority developments in rural areas that have suffered significant depopulation.
The anticipated spend for the Programme in 2010 is approximately €8m. The main areas where expenditure is likely are supports for water services and infrastructure, support for sports facilities and the development, refurbishment and improvement of health centres and facilities in CLÁR areas.
251. Deputy Bernard J. Durkan asked the Minister for Community, Rural and Gaeltacht Affairs his plans for the operation and development of the RAPID programme for the remainder of 2010; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [19338/10]
Minister for Community, Rural and Gaeltacht Affairs (Deputy Pat Carey): Through its focus on deprivation and social exclusion, the RAPID Programme will continue to address the impact of the economic downturn on vulnerable communities and to provide opportunities for social and economic recovery.
In order to ensure the continued relevance of the Programme, a review of RAPID area boundaries, based on an analysis of data from Census 2006 across a range of socio-economic and deprivation indicators, was undertaken to ensure that areas are appropriately targeting the most disadvantaged communities.
Following the review, the Government approved the inclusion of five new towns in the RAPID Programme in 2009 — Ballina, Dungarvan, Enniscorthy, Mullingar and Rathkeale. The review also proposed changes to the boundaries of some of the other 46 RAPID areas and I expect to bring proposals to Government in this regard in the coming weeks.
In 2010, funding of €5m has been allocated for the RAPID leverage schemes, whereby my Department co-funds with other Departments and agencies a range of small-scale local projects such as playgrounds, traffic measures, health facilities, CCTV and sports facilities. In this regard, I can assure the Deputy that my primary focus will continue to be to ensure that the front-line services provided by, or supported through, my Department, and especially those focused on the needs of the most socially deprived communities, are protected.
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