Tuesday, 5 October 2010
Dáil Éireann Debate
429. Deputy Frank Feighan asked the Minister for Community, Equality and Gaeltacht Affairs when Pobal was first set up; the reason it was established to administer public funds; to provide a breakdown of the budget for Pobal for 2010; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [34477/10]
Minister for Community, Equality and Gaeltacht Affairs (Deputy Pat Carey): Pobal (formerly Area Development Management Ltd.) was established by the Government in 1992, in agreement with the European Commission, to access EU funding for the purpose of fostering local development, promoting social inclusion, reconciliation and equality and countering disadvantage through local and social economic development. While Pobal was initially tasked to distribute EU funding provided for local/regional development, the size, scale and range of programmes delivered has increased significantly since 1992.
Pobal currently manages the administration of schemes/programmes on behalf of 13 Departments and bodies, with some €317m distributed to community-based organisations in 2009. Almost €17m was provided to Pobal for programme administration last year, a decrease of €3.2m on the corresponding figure for 2008. Pobal is remunerated by the relevant Department or body in respect of the cost of the services it provides. Determination of the level of service provided, the associated tasks and costs incurred by Pobal are matters for the individual Department or body concerned. Details of the resources allocated to Pobal for programme administration in 2010 should be sought directly from the Departments or bodies concerned.
At the beginning of 2010, Pobal managed six programmes on behalf of my Department, including the Local and Community Development Programme, Dormant Accounts Fund, Community Services Programme, RAPID, Rural Social Scheme and the Programme of Grants for Locally-based Community and Voluntary Organisations. The total allocation for the six programmes for 2010 is approximately €144m, which includes a provision of some €6m to meet the cost of administering the programmes. As the Deputy will be aware, the Community Services Programme and Rural Social Scheme recently transferred to the Department of Social Protection.
Pobal also manages a number of programmes that transferred from the Department of Justice and Law Reform into my Department when it was re-configured earlier this year. These are in the areas of integration/refugees, Traveller interagency work, equality for women and disability services. Some €870,000 has been earmarked for Pobal to meet the cost of administering these programmes in 2010. Further information on the range of schemes and programmes administered by Pobal is available on the company’s website www.pobal.ie.
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