Minister announces new €50m sewage collection and treatment fund for rural villages in Dublin

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Housing, Local Government and Heritage Minister Darragh O’Brien announced last week the launch of a new funding scheme targeting the wastewater collection and treatment needs of villages and towns without access to public sewage services.

he program is financed by a commitment of 50 million euros within the framework of the National Development Plan.

The Minister’s announcement follows the completion of a review of villages and towns that do not have access to public wastewater treatment infrastructure.

This work included consultation with stakeholders and a detailed survey by local authorities of villages and settlements in their region not served by sewage collection and treatment systems.

The scheme will now be open to local authorities for application and will remain open for applications until 15 September. There will also be an information workshop for local authorities.

Local authorities now have the opportunity to develop early and full funding applications under this new scheme which will be included in the Department’s Comprehensive Multi-Year Rural Water Program 2022-2025.

This will allow villages and settlements ultimately approved for funding to have a real and meaningful prospect of a faster and more successful outcome.

It is expected that at least ten demonstration projects will be supported under this first round of funding.

The objectives of the new initiative are to provide opportunities to support the provision of housing in small villages that are not currently served by collective wastewater treatment systems, while reducing public health risks and preventing the water pollution.

Minister O’Brien said: “Improving wastewater services will enable local authorities to work in partnership with the community to enable villages and towns to be better places to live, work and visit, to to support the government’s overall goals within the framework of housing for all and to give practical effect to our vision of a vibrant rural Ireland within the framework of Our Rural Future.

This new measure will provide 85% funding from the Department of Housing, Local Government and Heritage, with the remaining 15% coming from funding from the relevant local authority.

The first round of funding announced last week will focus on areas most in need based on housing and environmental criteria.

Local authorities are now invited to submit proposals for consideration for funding under this new measure.

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