Written answers

Tuesday, 31 May 2022

Department of Rural and Community Development

Departmental Programmes

Photo of Paul DonnellyPaul Donnelly (Dublin West, Sinn Fein)
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31. To ask the Minister for Rural and Community Development the timeline for opening up the new community services programme and if community groups including a group (details supplied) can engage with her Department now to help with the preparation of their application for the reopening of the scheme. [27791/22]

Photo of Joe O'BrienJoe O'Brien (Dublin Fingal, Green Party)
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My Department's Community Services Programme (CSP) supports over 420 community organisations to provide employment opportunities and the delivery of local services through a social enterprise model. The CSP provides an annual co-funding contribution of €19,033 for each full-time equivalent (FTE) position being supported, and, where warranted, provides €32,000 towards the cost of employing a manager.

Qualifying organisations must be social enterprises capable of generating income from their activities in order to meet the full salary costs of the supported posts, for example, from income received from the public use of facilities and services.

In 2020, an independent review of the CSP was undertaken by Indecon International Economic Consultants, on behalf of the Department.  The final report was published on 30 September 2020 and was accompanied by a high level action plan outlining the timeline for the phased implementation for the restructuring of the programme. The Department and Pobal, who administer the programme on behalf of the Department, are currently working on the restructuring of the Programme in conjunction with a Consultative Group, representative of stakeholders.

Pending the transition to the new restructured programme, the scheme is closed to new applications through the Expression of Interest process.  It is anticipated that the Programme will open calls to address identified gaps in service delivery later in 2022, subject to budgetary provision.

If the organisation in question would like to be contacted should a targeted call open later in 2022, they should provide the relevant contact details to my Department at csp@drcd.gov.ieand we will keep them on file and notify them when the call opens. However, pending the notification of a call, it is not possible for either my Department or Pobal to engage with individual organisations in respect of their potential applications under this programme. However, full details of the programme, including an Operating Manual and an FAQ section, are available on Pobal's website www.pobal.ie.

Photo of Joe CareyJoe Carey (Clare, Fine Gael)
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32. To ask the Minister for Rural and Community Development when she expects to announce successful projects in County Clare under the 2022 CLÁR programme; and if she will make a statement on the matter. [27842/22]

Photo of Heather HumphreysHeather Humphreys (Cavan-Monaghan, Fine Gael)
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The CLÁR programme provides funding under a number of different measures for small-scale infrastructural projects in designated rural areas that have experienced significant levels of de-population over a defined period. I launched this year's programme in February with a total budget of €7 million.  This represents an increase of €1.5 million on the budget for the 2021 CLÁR programme.

The measures being funded under CLÁR 2022 are:

Measure 1:  Developing Community Facilities & Amenities

Measure 2: Mobility, Cancer Care and Community First Responders Transport

Measure 3: ‘Our Islands’

The 2022 CLÁR programme is now closed for all measures and the assessment process has commenced for all applications.

I hope to make an announcement on the successful applicants under Measure 2 in the coming weeks and Measure 1 and 3 will be announced later this year.


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