THE Capital Assistance Scheme provides money to buy houses for people with intellectual disabilities who are on council waiting lists.
Many of the beneficiaries are people who have been released from institutions and need a secure home in the community.
Under the scheme, councils apply for funding in conjunction with voluntary housing bodies. The Department of the Environment gives up to 95pc of the cost of buying the house to the council – who in turn pass it on to the voluntary housing body.
If the housing body does not fulfil its promise to look after people in the property, it can be asked to refund the money. Last year, €58m was given to councils under the scheme, with 484 housing units provided as a result.
Environment Minister Phil Hogan has announced the scheme is to be reviewed.