Farm Ireland

Saturday 25 November 2017

Grant funding available to install wells

Big spends by local authorities mean applicants should hurry

Bruce Lett

For the time being at least, there is still a substantial grant available from county councils for the installation of a domestic well and associated pumping equipment.

How long the grant facility will remain in place is uncertain, but after last winter's damage to roads and the spend by local authorities on repairs, it might be wise to avail of the money while it's still possible.

The process of applying for the grant is relatively straight-forward. Go to your local county council's website and locate form WG1, "Grant for the Provision of or Necessary Improvement to an Individual Water Supply to a House".

Some county council websites are easier to navigate than others but you should find it in there somewhere. Alternatively, ring or drop in to your county council for the WG1 form. Make sure that you also download or get the "Explanatory Memorandum". This Department of the Environment document explains the ins and outs of the grant eligibility. It lists works which qualify for grant assistance, the value of the grant, approval of the contractor, approval of the application and, finally, payment of the grant.

To get grant approval for a new domestic water supply or to improve an existing supply, one of the main requirements is that the house has to be more than seven years old. The house must also be the applicant's primary residence as holiday homes do not qualify.

If water can be "reasonably" supplied by public or group water supply (or a planned proposed supply), you will not fall into the eligible category.

If your house is more than seven years old and nowhere near a public or group water supply you may be eligible for a pretty decent grant. So if you are relying on a water supply "teed" off the furthest away water trough on the farm and competing with the "black and whites" for water on a hot summer's day, the grant may offer an alternative supply.

Works eligible under the grant are quite broad and include drilling a new well or rehabilitating an existing well, and the construction or improvement of a pump house. Also covered is mechanical/electrical equipment associated with water pumping, plus equipment for treating the water if required.

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The total value of the grant available from your county council is €2,031.58 or 75pc of the approved cost, whichever is less. Basically, this means that a 75pc grant is available to a maximum payable by the local authority of €2,031.58.

On the flip side, works that have an approved cost of less than €635 do not qualify. Additionally, proposed works that exceed what would be required for "domestic" purposes do not qualify. Neither do works that relate to the provision or up-grading of a supply of water for non-domestic purposes.

Irish Independent