independent

Friday 18 April 2014

Roads grant 'isn't down by €2.5m'

COUNTY WEXFORD'S roads grant is not down €2.5m this year, contrary to how it looks on paper.

The local authority was given an extra one-off allocation of €2.5m last year to resurface roads after the Arctic winter. And the extra finance is not being allocated this year as the winter has been mild.

Cllr Padge Reck saw red when he viewed the road grant figures for 2012 and wondered why officials weren't making a fuss about it.

'I find it extraordinary that the Corporate Policy Committee did not discuss the reduction in our roads allocation,' said Cllr Reck, pictured right.

Director of Services Tony Larkin accepted there is a difference of €2.5m between this year's non-national roads allocation and the 2011 grant.

'Last year, we got a once-off grant for the re-instatement of roads in view of the winter we had.

' These grants are hugely important to us now and in the overall picture there will be €2.5m less to spend on the roads, but the extra money we got last year didn't come under the normal roads grant,' said Mr Larkin.

Council chairman Oliver Walsh repeated that this year's grant is the same as last year.

' That's a fair achievement – the fact that we got the same is great.

Cllr George Lawlor agreed. 'It's terrific that we are maintaining the level of grant aid for roads.'

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