A number of changes to the housing grant schemes operated by Mayo County Council will be put before the elected members of the council when they next meet. At the Ballina Municipal District April meeting, director of services for Mayo County Council, Paul Benson, told the district members: “Housing grants are on the adjourned April agenda, hopefully we will get moving on that. We have approved grants up to December 2014. It’s important we do get the changes recommended through, because we are looking at currently being able to approve grants up to the end of February this year, and that’s it until probably next November unless we get changes.”
The Housing Strategic Policy Committee of the council has recommended a number of changes to the current scheme which would see an increase in the Housing for Older People Grant from a maximum of €7,875 to €8,000, the eligibility age increased from 60 to 64, the income eligibility reduced from €65,000 to €60,000, and all household income to be assessed. Insulation and heating works will not be eligible for the scheme.
There will also be a sliding scale of grants awarded as a percentage of the estimated costs. With income of up to €30,000 receiving 75 per cent, up to €35,000 getting 60 per cent, up to €40,000 receiving 50 per cent, up to €50,000 getting 40 per cent, and up to €60,000 eligible for 25 per cent.
The Mobility Aids Grant will see the maximum grant go from €4,500 to €6,000, the income eligibility will remain at €30,000 and the grant would cover 95 per cent of the estimated cost of the works.
For the Housing Adaptation Grant for disabled persons, the maximum grant would increase from €22,500 to €30,000. The income eligibility will be reduced from €65,000 to €60,000 and all household income will be assessed. There will also be a sliding scale with the grant awarded as a percentage of the estimated cost. With incomes of up to €30,000 receiving 95 per cent of the costs, €35,000 getting 85 per cent, €40,000 receiving 75 per cent, €50,000 getting 50 per cent, and income up to €60,000 being entitled to 30 per cent.