Irish Examiner - Thursday, 24 April 2008
regeneration boss denies problems with government funding
head of Limericks regeneration programme yesterday denied
there would be problems in getting funding from various government
departments as the vast work in Moyross, Southill, St Marys
Park and Ballinacurra Weston progresses.
Brendan Kenny was
responding to concerns raised about the multi-agency budget
requirements raised by Michael Noonan TD, the former Fine Gael
Mr Noonan called
on John Fitzgerald, author of the regeneration programme for
rundown parts of Limerick, and the government to spell out what
funds are available.
Mr Noonan said that
while many different State agencies will be involved, such as
the Department of Education, Social Welfare, Justice, the Environment
and the Health Service Executive, the only budget pledged so
far related to the provision of housing.
Mr Noonan claimed
this exposed a flaw in the legislation enabling the regeneration
programme to proceed, stating: So while Brendan Kenny
has money to knock houses and build houses, he has no money
to put in extra services. I think that if it is to be a multi-agency
approach then the government has to have a multi-agency budget
fund to pay for additional health services, educational services
and social services in the regeneration areas.
Mr Kenny, chief executive
of Limericks northside and southside regeneration agencies,
said they are satisfied with their 2008 budget and, with building
work due to being in 2009, a significant sum is expected at
If new investment
is required, which is very possible, we will look for that.
It is unclear at the moment what will be needed.
We are trying
to analyse the current system for problems and gaps because
it clearly needs to change. We will look for additional funding
when it is needed. Obviously there are already a lot of services
in these areas and there is no point just throwing money at
them. That is not a solution.
When it comes
to the crunch, we are confident that we will get the funding
that is needed, he said.
masterplans are due to be completed by June and Mr Kenny said
that the range of cross-agency measures will be much clearer