A day after the allocation of funding for private rural roads was discussed at the West Mayo Municipal District meeting, the Government delivered.
Members questioning an expected funding announcement under the Local Improvement Scheme at Monday's meeting were assured by Fine Gael councillor Gerry Coyle it would be made the following day. And as he predicted, on Tuesday morning, the Minister for Rural and Community Development, Michael Ring, announced his approval of €855,000 for Mayo under the LIS funding stream.
The LIS funding supports improvement works on private/non-public roads such as the lanes and boreens that enable people to access their homes and farms. These roads are not under the normal maintenance of the local authorities, but are a vital artery for people living in rural areas.
Being able to get work carried out on these roads kept a lifeline open for people living in rural areas, said Ring.
“This scheme is a lifeline for people living in rural areas because it directly improves their access to and from their homes and farms.
"It is important to remember many people living in rural areas use these roads on every journey they take. So if you’re doing five journeys a day to and from your home and there are bad potholes on your access road, it really impacts on you. By investing in the improvement of these roads we are helping to improve people’s quality of life in rural areas."
Ring encouraged local authorities to compile a list of roads, based on their capacity to undertake and complete the work by a deadline of the end of July this year, and submit them to his Department.
The Westport-based Minister said last year 89 roads in Mayo had been repaired under this scheme and he would be looking at a second allocation under the same scheme in September.