Written answers

Wednesday, 6 November 2019

Department of Rural and Community Development

Departmental Expenditure

Photo of Jackie CahillJackie Cahill (Tipperary, Fianna Fail)
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198. To ask the Minister for Rural and Community Development the cost of holding an event (details supplied); and the costs associated with advertising, design work, photography, event staging, venue hire, print and online media advertising and public relations in tabular form. [45686/19]

Photo of Michael RingMichael Ring (Mayo, Fine Gael)
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The announcement of successful projects under the Town and Village Renewal Scheme 2019 took place in Killawalla Community Hall, Co. Mayo on 30th October 2019. On foot of the announcement, 156 rural towns and villages across the country are set to benefit from €15 million in funding under the scheme.

Officials from my Department worked with Mayo County Council and the local community to stage the event in Killawalla. Other than €455.78 incurred in relation to photography services, my Department incurred no expenditure in relation to the event.

Photo of Jackie CahillJackie Cahill (Tipperary, Fianna Fail)
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199. To ask the Minister for Rural and Community Development the cost of making a video (details supplied); the Department that funded the video; the number of meetings he and senior staff had with Accounting Officers and staff from other Departments, including Accounting Officers who were involved, including by giving instructions and advice in promoting the video; and the details of each meeting in tabular form. [45745/19]

Photo of Michael RingMichael Ring (Mayo, Fine Gael)
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My Department was established in July 2017 with an important mandate to promote rural and community development and help to build vibrant sustainable communities across the country.

My Department is achieving this through a range of funding schemes and initiatives and has, as outlined in its published Statement of Strategy, prioritised communicating with the general public in relation to the range of supports available to assist communities and those in rural Ireland.

For example, my Department administers the Rural Regeneration and Development Fund, a €1 billion investment by government in rural Ireland over the period 2019 to 2027. We are also delivering schemes such as the LEADER 2014-2020 Programme (€250 million) and Community Development Programmes, to which my Department will allocate €158 million in 2020 alone.

As part of my Department’s ongoing communications strategy, we have undertaken a number of measures to meet our communications objectives, including:

- The staging of a series of Rural Opportunity events held across the country in early 2019, attended by the public and community and voluntary representatives, with a view to raising awareness of the supports available across Government; and

- The delivery of a complementary supporting programme of workshop events entitled "Helping Hands” held in regional locations which set out to assist less experienced community groups and organisations in accessing funding schemes and programmes.

In order to build on this progress, my Department recently commissioned a series of videos detailing 10 case-studies which highlight key rural and community schemes and programmes operated by this Department. The video referred to by the Deputy is the first in that series.

The videos were funded directly by my Department at a cost of €26,610 with a further €5,000 allocated (€500 per video) for online promotion. Production services for the videos were sourced through a tendering process overseen by the Office of Government Procurement. No other Departments were involved directly in the preparation, production or promotion of the videos.

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