¤2m loans se­cured to fa­cil­i­tate grants

OVER­DRAFT COUN­CIL MOVE TO COM­BAT CUT­BACKS

Bray People - - News -

GRANTS which were feared to be in jeop­ardy due to Gov­ern­ment cut­backs are to be funded by Wick­low County Coun­cil through a loan of ¤ 2m which will be added onto a newly ap­proved Coun­cil over­draft of ¤ 20m.

The Dis­abled Per­son Grants and Es­sen­tial Re­pair Grants which had been al­lo­cated but put on hold due to a lack of fund­ing have now been se­cured and those who have ei­ther started works or been told they have fund­ing are cer­tain to re­ceive what was promised to them.

At Mon­day’s meet­ing of Wick­low County Coun­cil ev­ery mem­ber present voiced their dis­gust that an el­derly or dis­abled per­son could be left in the lurch by the Coun­cil es­pe­cially as they of­ten do not have the means to get the work car­ried out by them­selves.

‘I have had peo­ple break down in tears. It is the Gov­ern­ment which has cut fund­ing on the needy, poor and the el­derly, those who need it most. We are obliged to pay even if the Gov­ern­ment will not. We must hon­our our com­mit­ments,’ said Cllr. Nicky Kelly.

‘Peo­ple have com­mit­ted to builders and have to an­swer to them. They can­not get a bank loan and they have been em­bar­rassed by this whole sit­u­a­tion, as have I. We must pay up,’ said Cllr. Pat Do­ran.

Cllr. Kath­leen Kelle­her said that hon­our- ing th­ese grants makes eco­nomic sense as they en­able peo­ple to stay in their own homes for longer rather than need­ing hospi­tal or nurs­ing home care.

‘We are be­ing pen­ny­wise and pound fool­ish. It makes eco­nomic sense,’ she said.

Di­rec­tor of Ser­vices Michael Ni­chol­son told mem­bers that the cut­backs had come due to a 50 per cent re­duc­tion in cen­tral gov­ern­ment fund­ing and a drop in the num­ber of Coun­cil prop­er­ties sold this year.

Mem­bers agreed that a sum of ¤ 2m would be added to the al­ready ap­proved ¤20m Coun­cil over­draft to cover all pre-ap­proved grants and that new applications would be as­sessed sub­ject to the new bud­get.

El­derly peo­ple have com­mit­ted to builders and need the cap­i­tal to pay for their work.

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