A further €7.4 million is being made available in funding for Local Local Authorities under the Local Improvement Scheme (LIS) to support the improvement of non-public rural roads in 2017.
The announcement was made by Minister for Rural and Community Development, Michael Ring TD yesterday.
This brings the total funds to €17.4 million, the amount invested by the Government in non-public rural lanes, boreens and access roads this year.
An initial €10 million in funding was announced by Michael Ring TD and Taoiseach Leo Varadkar at National Ploughing Champions.
All counties that submitted an application for funding and indicated a capacity to complete works before the end of the year have been allocated funding.
The Department of Rural and Community Development will provide up to 90% of the funding through the Local Authorities, with the remaining contribution coming from local residents, or Local Authorities in the case of roads leading to public amenities.
Minister Ring said: “The Local Improvement Scheme is about improving small roads and laneways in rural Ireland which are not maintained by the Local Authorities. I cannot overstate how important these roads are to people in rural areas. They enable them to access their homes and farms but many have fallen into disrepair.
“These roads give access to homes, farmyards, agricultural land and business premises, and are often heavily used, but because they fall outside of direct local authority control, many need upgrading. It’s only right and fair that some of the motor tax, excise duty on fuel and local property tax paid by people in rural areas is invested in the repair of shared laneways that connect their homes, farms and businesses to the public road network.” Ring said.
Ring said that Donegal County Council has been allocated €2.5 million and highlighted that “high demand” for improvements to non-public roads as a result of the damage caused by local flooding in August.
“I will ensure that my Department continues to invest in infrastructure to support rural people in their daily lives.” Minister Ring concluded.