Monday, 14th October 2019
Press Statement by Hildegarde Naughton TD
Fine Gael, Galway West and South Mayo
Almost €4.5 million is to be invested in rural water services in Galway under a new government programme to improve water quality, infrastructure and conservation in rural areas.
Thousands of households across the county will benefit from the investment, which is focused on areas such as source protection, development of new group water schemes, and enhancement of existing infrastructure.
Fine Gael TD for Galway West Hildegarde Naughton welcomed the announcement, which she said was a further demonstration of the Government’s commitment to revitalising and supporting rural communities.
“This funding is part of a €54 million investment in rural water services across 25 counties, and it’s a further demonstration that this Government is serious about rural regeneration, which it has identified as a priority from day one,” she said.
“It is massive investment in itself, which will have a positive impact on many households across the county, but it is also part of a broader strategy to support people living in rural areas so that location is no barrier to receiving amenities and services.
“Rural communities have suffered depopulation and neglect for too long, but we have prioritised investment in rural economies, communities and public services, so that families can grow up and grow old wherever they choose,” added Deputy Naughton.
Local authorities and group schemes were invited to apply for funding under the new multi-annual capital investment programme for water services in rural areas earlier this year.
Following an assessment process, 621 projects in 25 counties were approved for investment of over €54.3 million across seven categories including source protection, public health compliance, enhancement of existing schemes, and new schemes, as well as innovation and research.
Projects in Galway will receive almost €1.8 million to upgrade existing infrastructure and make it more efficient, while nearly €1.2 million has been allocated to upgrade treatment facilities.
Almost €900,000 has been approved to bring existing group water schemes under the remit of Irish Water, while €215,600 will be used for the establishment of new group water schemes in rural areas.
“Good quality water services are critically important to people’s health, quality of life, and rural economies. It’s the stated aim of this Government to ensure that people in rural communities can expect the same quality of water services as those in urban areas,” explained Deputy Naughton.
The Galway West TD indicated that further investment can be expected in the area of rural water services.
“Last year, Minister Eoghan Murphy initiated a review of rural water services, and the new capital programme is a result of that process. It is laying the foundation for future development, and he is working to deliver increased investment,” said Deputy Naughton.