Community development

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LCDP: progress in privatization

Asked about the future of the local development companies and their staff if they were unsuccessful in tendering for the Local Community Development Programme in January 2015, the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government Phil Hogan told Padraig Mac Lochlann (SF, Donegal NE) that he had no role in their staff or employment matters and that these were for the board of each company to manage (Dail Eireann, Debates, 11th March 2014, 277-8).  Later, he told the Dail that the financial allocation for them this year should be sufficient for them to continue with most of their employment in the context of the financial resources available to them ‘and in view of the fact that they have to make decisions as private companies as to whether they have sufficient resources for administration, or not’.


Turning to the Working Group on Citizen Engagement, the minister told Eamonn Moloney (Lab, Dublin SW) that his department would now engage with stakeholders, such as the Association of City and County Councils, the City and County Managers Association (voluntary and community organizations were not mentioned – ed) on the preparation of regulations and guidelines to take account of its report, include the proposal to establish a Public Participation Network in each local authority area (Dail Eireann, Debates, 12th March 2014, 563).  


Later, he told Brendan Smith (FF, Cavan – Monaghan) that he had met both the alignment working group and the Irish Local Development Network on 6th March and that the next working group meeting was set for 2nd April (Dail Eireann, Debates, 13th March 2014, 900). 


The Minister for Social Protection, Joan Burton, told Eric Byrne (Lab, Dublin SC) that delivery of jobs-related programmes (e.g Tus, Community Employment, Rural Socal Scheme, Local Employment Service) was not predicated on the companies delivering the Local Community Development Programme (Dail Eireann, Debates, 11th March 2014, 232).  


Asked by John Halligan (ind, Waterford) about the future of the organizations such as the Waterford Traveller Community Development Project, the Minister for the Environment, Community and Local Government Phil Hogan told him that the new Local Community Development Committees would develop the community elements of a 6-year Local Economic and Community Plan which would include the Local Community Development Proramme which currently funds the Waterford Traveller CDP (Dail Eireann, Debates, 25th March 2014, 458-9). 


Separately, the Minister of State at the Department of Finance Brian Hayes told Caoimhghin O Caolain (SF, Cavan Monaghan) that the recently-appointed manager for domestic, sexual and gender-based violence services was working with the head of procurement in the new Child and Family Agency to establish a tender process, due to begin September, for the provision of support to front line agencies, which would be open to all qualified providers, such as the Rape Crisis Centres (Dail Eireann, Debates, 13th March 2014, 797-9).  The new director believe that the appropriate way to channel significant resources was in a way to invite tenders for longer-term funding, rather than the kind of annual funding which most organizations felt was unfair.

> See also Dail Eireann, Debates, 4th March 2014, 223, 227-8;  11th March, 286-7; 12th March, 560; 25th March, 588.

> LEADER funding: Seanad Eireann, Debates, 11th March 2014, 361-3; 12th March, 398-400; Local Community Development Committees and LEADER: Dail Eireann, Debates, 11th March 2014, 278-9.