Councillors slam suspension of roads scheme
The suspension of the Community Involvement Scheme which helped people living on local roads not maintained by Cork County Council with funding to improve, restore and maintain their roads, was denounced by councillors at the January meeting of Fermoy Electoral Area committee this week.
Cllr Frank O’Flynn tabled a motion calling on Cork County Council to ask the Minister of Transport, Tourism and Sport to rescind the decision to suspend the scheme. Recent changes made by the Department mean people must now apply directly to the Department for funding, instead of the County Council. The County Council carries out the work. The local contribution has also been raised from 25% to 50%.
“This was an absolutely brilliant scheme, the standard of work was great and people were pleased with it,” Cllr O’Flynn said. He was critical of the decision to raise the local contribution, saying it would put the scheme out of reach for people. He proposed they write to the Minister and ask him to review his decision.
Cllr Noel McCarthy agreed, saying it was a very good scheme which helped people living on minor roads and cul-de-sacs to have their roads done.
“Some struggled to pay the contribution but they got the money – they could rise to 25% but not 50%” he said.
Cllr Kevin O’Keefe said the Government had, with the changes, created ‘a public/private partnership with no return on it’. He too said that even 25% was difficult for some people to raise. “We shouldn’t take this lying down,” he said, supporting the motion.
It was agreed, in addition to writing to the Minister, to write to the County Manager to see if the council will fund it if the Government won’t.