€70m made available to repair storm damage

The Government today decided that a sum of up to seventy €70 million euro will be made available for a programme of repair and remediation works following the severe weather of late.

This will enable local authorities in the areas worst affected by the storms, including the most recent flooding, to help affected communities by restoring roads, coastal protection and other infrastructure and amenities.

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The €70m figure derives from estimates provided by local authorities and other agencies, broken down as follows:
€16 m for roads;
€20 m for restoring coastal protection infrastructure;
€26 m for local authority infrastructure, tourism, amenity and community infrastructure, and piers/harbours; and
€8 m for other transport and OPW infrastructure.
This is in addition to the €25m which Government has already announced for Department of Social Protection’s Humanitarian Assistance schemes.

Speaking after the cabinet meeting, Minister Phil Hogan said:
The making available of this €70m clearly demonstrates the Government’s financial commitment to respond to the needs of communities which were devastated by the storms. It is based on the requests from local authorities and facilitates them in immediately beginning a programme of prioritised works to assist the communities and areas worst affected. It will also help many areas which rely on tourism to get back in business.

I know there has been further damage in many areas from the most recent spell of storms and flooding. The important thing is that the local authorities and the communities they serve can be assured they can draw down the necessary funds from the three Departments involved in this programme. My Department and staff of the others involved will be meeting staff of the local authorities concerned to set out the working arrangements in consultation with the Department of Public Expenditure and Reform.

Although the latest weather forecasts indicate the pattern of severe storms will continue this week, the water levels in the rivers has stabilised over the weekend. The Minister thanked all those in the public services who have been working over an extended period to deal with the worst of the impact for communities, as well as those members of communities who assisted their neighbours who were in need.

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