Jobs are being shed at organisations in Co Cork which aid rural development because they still haven’t received funding from central government and there’s fears that many worthy projects will also be put on hold as a result.
Local Community Development Committees (LCDCs) had their funding cut last year by a staggering 71%. Cork County Council decided to step into the breach and provide some money for the organisations, but despite promises the Government has yet to even inform them of what their allocation will be this year.
County council officials said it was likely that government funding wouldn’t be received by the LCDCs until May or June.
In the meantime a Ballyhoura-based LCDC, which helps community groups in south Limerick and north Cork with local projects, has announced that it’s had to shed jobs as a result. Cllr Ian Doyle (FF) said he was aware of the jobs cuts at Ballyhoura Development and was very concerned that other LCDCs may be forced to follow suit.
Council officials said they had not been formally notified of jobs losses at other LCDCs, but acknowledged it was ‘somewhat inevitable’ that there would be knock-on effects due to the cuts and uncertainty over future funding. They said they were aware that some LCDCs had put staff on short-time and were not renewing contracts. Concerns about the effect this would have on rural projects were raised by Cllrs Bernard Moynihan (FF) and Tim Collins (Ind).
Cllr Frank O’Flynn (FF) won unanimous support from colleagues on the council’s northern division to write to the Taoiseach to get him to immediately release money to the LCDCs and also to request a meeting with Minister for the Environment Alan Kelly, whose department oversees the grants.
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