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€2.3 Billion Spend in 2010 will protect the environment and promote a sustainable economy

€2.3 Billion Spend in 2010 will protect the environment and promote a sustainable economy
10/12/09

John Gormley, T.D., Minister for the Environment, Heritage and Local Government today (9 December 2009) welcomed total spending of €2.3 Billion for his Department for 2010. The Department will have the second largest capital spending envelope (€1.5 Billion) of all Departments and it will support key investment in housing provision and Water Services infrastructure.

Like all Government departments, the Department of the Environment has seen an overall reduction in its budget, and this will amount to 12 per cent in 2010. However reductions in tender prices, combined with other initiatives, will enable the department to maintain its work in key areas of protecting the environment and promoting a sustainable society and economy.

Key Points:

Housing

  • €1.1 Billion for housing measures. The innovative move towards leasing of housing available in the market reduces the need for construction. Overall housing budget will deliver some 9,000 new housing units for households in need of housing in 2010.

  • €80 million is being provided for housing adaptations grants for older people and people with a disability.

  • Despite budgetary pressures, support for homeless provision maintained at €56 million.

  • Funding for energy efficiency retrofitting programme in the public housing stock doubles to €40m.

Water Services

  • €508 million (no cut) to continue high level investment in water services infrastructure. New three year capital investment programme to be announced by the Minister shortly to prioritise key requirements country wide.

  • Investment in the upgrading of rural water schemes is to continue.

  • Water metering for households to be implemented to promote more efficient use of water. This will provide a fair basis for a charging system based on consumption with a free allowance.

Local Government

  • General purpose grants of nearly €900 million to support Local Authority current spending.

  • No increase in Motor Tax.

  • Minister to outline details of new efficiency reviews for local authority spending to examine entire local authority cost base.

  • New Mayor of Dublin to be elected in 2010.

  • White paper to be published on strengthening local authority organisation structures.


Heritage

  • Continuation of spending in the Heritage (€25 million) and National Parks and Wildlife (€32 million) areas.


Minister Gormley said “At a time when we are steadfast in addressing essential reorientation of spending of public moneys I am satisfied that significant resources are being made available to my Department for continuation of the key programmes in 2010 both in my Department and across the Local Government sector.”

 






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