Thursday, 15 July 2021
Ceisteanna ar Sonraíodh Uain Dóibh - Priority Questions
I thank the Deputy. There was €10 million for the LIS in 2020, so I have more than doubled that this year, with funding of €21 million being made available. That is a 110% increase in funding, which is not bad going. I know the Deputy acknowledges that. I accept that the lists are long nationwide. That is why I have not been found wanting when it comes to providing additional funding. I am familiar with it. Like Deputy Kerrane, I am from a rural constituency and I know the benefit of this scheme. The Deputy will be aware that the LIS was previously funded by the Department of Transport and she will appreciate that that Department has a sizeable capital budget compared with my Department. I believe that the Department of Transport has a role to play here. If it started to provide matched funding, we could start to make inroads into these waiting lists. I have raised the matter with the Minister, Deputy Ryan, and I think he is open to the idea, but he has to discuss it with his own officials in the Department of Transport.