Grants to Limerick County Council for Housing Aid for the Elderly and Housing Adaptation

To ask the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government the amount that was granted to Limerick County Council for the housing aid for the elderly grant scheme and the housing adaptation grant scheme to date in 2011; if, in view of the fact that the area offices are reporting that they are out of the necessary funding, he will be releasing further moneys this year; and the planned allocation moneys for Limerick County Council in 2012. – Dan Neville.

For WRITTEN answer on Wednesday, 14th September, 2011.

Ref No: 23286/11

REPLY

Minister of State at the Department of Environment, Community and Local Government (Mr. W. Penrose)

The suite of Grant Schemes for Older People and People with a Disability is funded by 80% recoupment available from my Department together with a 20% contribution from the resources of the local authority. It is a matter for each local authority to decide on the specific level of funding to be directed to each of the various grant measures, and to manage the operation of the schemes in their areas from within their allocation.

Exchequer funding totaling €1,375,380 was allocated to Limerick County Council to meet expenditure arising under the schemes in 2011. So far, some €921,469 of this has been drawn down by the Council. All of the funding available under the grant schemes has been fully committed at this stage. My Department monitors expenditure under the schemes on an ongoing basis and requests for additional funding will be considered in the context of savings arising due to an under-spend by any local authority of their 2011 allocation.

Allocations to local authorities next year will be considered in the context of the 2012 budgetary provision for the grant schemes and local authorities will be notified of these as soon as possible after the publication of the 2012 Estimates for Public Services.

My Department is aware that these schemes are very heavily subscribed and available funding has been heavily committed in many areas. To provide for continuity in the processing of applications and the payment of grants under the various grant measures, local authorities are advised by my Department that they can commit up to 50% of their current year allocation in respect of grant payments falling due in the following year.