Written answers

Tuesday, 9 December 2014

Department of Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht

Departmental Expenditure

Photo of Mattie McGrathMattie McGrath (Tipperary South, Independent)
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99. To ask the Minister for Arts, Heritage and the Gaeltacht the funding mechanisms she is considering to support and maintain built heritage in 2015; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [46803/14]

Photo of Heather HumphreysHeather Humphreys (Cavan-Monaghan, Fine Gael)
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My Department is currently considering the funding available for the protection and conservation of the built heritage in 2015 in the context of its overall allocation and final decisions will be made following the publication of the Revised Estimates Volume.As the Deputy can appreciate, the scope for funding for the conservation of the built heritage is currently constrained by the significant reduction in the public finances. Nonetheless, the competing priorities regarding the preservation and enhancement of the national heritage are kept under ongoing review having regard to the resources available to my Department. Funding for the protection of built heritage will continue to be provided by my Department via a number of measures, which will be either directly administered or delivered through local authorities and agencies.

In 2014, my Department was provided with an allocation of €5m Capital Stimulus funding for a new Built Heritage Jobs Leverage Scheme to assist with works to safeguard protected structures, in private and civic ownership, protected under the Planning and Development Act 2000-2012.

In 2011, 2012 and 2013, my Department operated a Structures at RiskFund to assist with works to safeguard structures protected under the Act, where an urgent need for works to such structures had arisen and had been demonstrated. Both of these schemes were administered by local authorities.

My Department also provided funding for conservation works to heritage structures in State care in 2014 and previous years.This funding supported works to structures both under the management of the Office of Public Works and in local authority ownership or management.

The Heritage Council, which my Department funds, also provides grants for the protection and preservation of the built heritage.

Finally, my Department provides support for the Irish Heritage Trust, which has a mandate to acquire for public access important heritage properties where the State does not wish to acquire them directly and where there is imminent risk to their heritage value.


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