€30,000 for 4 Meath based Animal Welfare groups

Funding, Meath

Damien English, Meath West Fine Gael T.D. and Minister for Housing and Urban Development, has welcomed funding awards of €30,000 for four Meath based animal welfare organisations recently.

According to Minister English, these local organisations provide a vital service throughout the County in protecting animal welfare. The organisations that will benefit from the Government announcement include: Dogs in Distress Ltd, Ash Hill, Dunboyne, (€11,000), Last Hope Animal Charity, Navan, (€10,000), Leinster Horse & Pony Rescue, Navan Road, Trim, (€4,000), and Mollies Animal Rescue, Duleek (€5,000). The payments will be made with immediate effect, meaning a positive start for animal welfare in Co. Meath in the New Year.

Minister English stated: “These local organisations contribute greatly to protecting animals in Meath, by providing sanctuary for in many instances surrendered, abandoned and at risk animals and the funding being awarded is evidence of Fine Gael in Government’s on-going commitment in the area of animal welfare and is a recognition of the important role played by these organisations in safeguarding animals particularly pet and companion animals.”

He continued: “I join with my colleague the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine in acknowledging the work of the welfare organisations locally and nationally. I take this opportunity to thank their staff and volunteers, especially over the Christmas and New Year period when many of them will have to work especially hard.”

Economic recovery allows for over €12m investment in Meath  roads – English

Funding, Meath, North Meath, Roads

Local Minister for Skills, Research and Innovation and Meath West T.D.Damien English has today (Tuesday) welcomed the news that €12,271,812 has been allocated to Meath for road improvement and maintenance works. The funding is part of a €298 million national investment programme for 2016 for regional and local roads.

“Meath is getting a real boost from this significant investment of
€12,271,812 in our local and regional roads. The announcement of this
funding allocation today by Minister for Transport, Tourism and Sport,
Paschal Donohoe, allows Meath County Council to plan its work
programme for the year.

“The funding package will allow approximately 2,000 kilometres of
regional and local roads to be maintained nationally and close to
2,000 kilometres strengthened this year.

“It is thanks to our recovering economy that we can make these kinds
of investments in our road network which is a hugely important. It is
good for tourism, increases efficiencies for businesses and benefits
the local people who use the roads on a daily basis.

“Fine Gael has a long term economic plan designed to keep the recovery
going which will ensure we can continue to make these kinds of
investments. The plan has three steps: more and better jobs, making
work pay more than welfare, and investment in better public services,
which will only be possible as a result of the increased revenue
generated by creating more jobs. This plan will ensure that more
people feel the benefits of a recovering economy in their own lives”
Minister English said,

Meath County Council

Restoration Improvement€6,557,759
Restoration Maintenance€1,845,869
Discretionary Grant€3,040,184
Bridge Rehabilitation€435,000
Specific Imp. Grants€50,000
Safety Improvement Works€192,500
Speed Limits€82,500
Training Grant€68,000

Total Allocation€12,271,812

2016 Specific Improvement Grant

Scheme NameLA Allocation
SG: Bettystown to Laytown Link Road€50,000
Meath County Council Total€50,000

2016 Bridge Rehabilitation Works on Regional and Local Roads

Local AuthorityRoad NumberLocationLA Allocation
Meath County CouncilR-125-194Donaghmore Bridge€60,000
Meath County CouncilR-125-211Dun Bridge€60,000
Meath County CouncilL-5027Ballintry Bridge€60,000
Meath County CouncilL-62261-11Rathcore Bridge€60,000
Meath County CouncilL-1604-51Rathbran Culvert€40,000
Meath County CouncilR-163-120Headfort Bridge€155,000
Meath County Council Total€435,000

2016 Safety Improvement Works on Regional and Local Roads

Local AuthorityRoad NumberLocationLA Allocation
Meath County CouncilR153Casey’s Cross Roads €30,000
Meath County CouncilR152Platin (R152 / L-56131-0)€32,000
Meath County CouncilR156 R156 junction with the L4021at Moyfeagher€30,000
Meath County CouncilL2207Junction of the L6200, L6224 & L2207 at Belper X€32,500
Meath County CouncilL1002Rathfeigh L-5003-11 / L-1002-21€35,000
Meath County CouncilR162Proudstown Road (R162/L 7415-0)€33,000
Meath County Council Total€192,500


Minister English urges Meath towns to apply for Artisan food opportunities

Farming, Food, Funding

New fund also available for Social Farming


Today I want to welcome a new community based competitive funding process for local and artisan food markets. The funding under the Department of Agriculture is one of the delivered actions of the Commission for Economic Development of Rural Areas Report chaired by noted GAA pundit and player Pat Spillane.

The funding, which is being allocated on a competitive basis, is open to all rural towns and villages with populations of up to 10,000 and offers potential funding of between €5,000-10,000 for development of existing or start-up local food and artisan markets.

Meath is a becoming a player in the national and international food markets. We have some of the best restaurants in the country, along with quality natural producers of increasing prominence locally, nationally and internationally. The Boyne Valley Tourism Conference earlier this year gave a major insight into how our food reputation was a major part of the County’s Tourism offering and attraction to visitors. Gary O’Meara and his team at Meath Enterprise are also highlighting Meath’s potential to become the Boyne Valley Food Hub – a food innovation and research centre of national standing.

The development or expansion of local food and artisan markets in Meath will compliment all of this work, and supports rural development in its own right too as it helps stimulate commercial and retail activity in rural high streets as well as developing a strong sense of community involvement and achievement. That is why I am urging Meath towns to apply.

In a separate delivered action of the Commission for Economic Development of Rural Areas Report funding is now available for Social Farming initiatives in Meath. Social farming is the practice of offering, on a voluntary basis, farming, horticultural and animal related work experience as a choice to people who avail of a range of day support services. This CEDRA fund will provide up to 75% grant aid for initiatives that support social farming operations on family farms or in institutional settings. A funding range of €10,000-20,000 is envisaged for approved projects.

Both schemes have limited funding, so proposals will be selected on a competitive basis against the other proposals received and the funds stated objectives. These schemes are being advertised nationally and in local papers. Application forms and fuller schemes details can be found on the Department’s website at the following links:

www.agriculture.gov.ie/cedra/socialfarming and www.agriculture.gov.ie/cedra/localfoodmarkets

The closing date for applications under both schemes is Friday 14th August 2015. Online applications only are being accepted.

Beef Genomics Programme deadline extension to benefit farmers in Meath West

Farming, Funding

The extension of the deadline for the Beef Data and Genomics Programme will give more Meath and Westmeath farmers the chance to apply. The new deadline for application to the scheme is Friday 5th June.

Already almost 15,000 farmers have applied for the Beef Data and Genomics Programme. I welcome the extension of the deadline for application to the scheme to Friday 5th of June, which will ensure that Meath and  Westmeath farmers have every possible chance to apply.

I know that some beef farmers had concerns around the flexibility of being in a six year programme. However the Minister for Agriculture, Food and the Marine, Simon Coveney, has highlighted that many farmers have more land than is needed to qualify for the full payment under the scheme and so there won’t be compliance issues if they are to sell off or lease some of their land within the six year time period. Where the land is sold, leased, gifted or willed, the obligations of the scheme will transfer to the new owner.

Farmers with any queries in relation to the scheme should read the Frequently Asked Questions document on the Department of Agriculture’s website, or to contact the Department directly on Lo-call 1890 200 510 or 01 607 2000.