Written answers

Wednesday, 28 September 2022

Department of Housing, Planning, and Local Government

Defective Building Materials

Photo of Rose Conway-WalshRose Conway-Walsh (Mayo, Sinn Fein)
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37. To ask the Minister for Housing, Planning, and Local Government if he will review the upper cap for the defective concrete block scheme to enable persons to rebuild their homes; and if he will make a statement on the matter. [47330/22]

Photo of Darragh O'BrienDarragh O'Brien (Dublin Fingal, Fianna Fail)
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Following on from the Government decision of the 30 November 2021 in respect of the enhanced Defective Concrete Blocks Grant scheme, the Government approved the Remediation of Dwellings Damaged by the Use of Defective Concrete Blocks Bill 2022 on 21 June and the Bill passed through both Houses of the Oireachtas and was subsequently signed into law by the President on the 23 July, 2022. 

The purpose of this Act is to implement and give legislative underpinning to a series of measures to improve and enhance the scheme as agreed by Government on 30 November 2021. Full details can be found at www.gov.ie/en/press-release/328d7-minister-obrien-welcomes-progress-on-enhanced-defective-concrete-blocks-grant-scheme/. 

The Act provides for a maximum grant of €420,000. The grant applicable to an individual homeowner will depend on the appropriate remediation option as determined and the maximum grant available for the dwelling given its size or the amount of blockwork to be removed and replaced and the grant rates in place at that time. 

Section 11 of the Act provides for an increase or decrease in remediation and ancillary grant amounts. These amounts can be revised by Government order not more than once every 12 months. Three such orders can be made and thereafter a resolution of the Oireachtas will be required for the making a maximum of three further orders. The maximum overall increase in the overall grant cap which can be applied by the Minister in any single order is 10%.

As set out in Section 11 (6) of the Act, in making an order to increase or decrease, regard will be given to construction costs prevailing in the designated local authority areas and the economic circumstances of the State prevailing at the time of the making of the order.

The grant rates to apply will be prescribed in regulations which my Department are currently working on. The grant rates prescribed will be no less favourable than those recommended by SCSI in their cost report and will be sufficient to enable a homeowner to remediate their home.


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