Phil Prendergast MEP urges Minister Hogan to reconsider position on Leader funding

Phil Prendergast MEP for Ireland South and candidate in the upcoming European Elections has called on Minister for Environment, Community and Local Government Phil Hogan to halt plans that will see Leader funding money being administered by local government. The move will see the administration of the funds taken out of the hands of local development companies all over the country, where they have been successfully implemented since the funding came on stream.


Speaking from the campaign trail in Kilkenny this morning, Ms Prendergast expressed her concern with the move.


“To be honest, I am very wary of removing the administration of these funds away from local development companies. You are removing it from the hands of the people it affects most, and politicising it by handing it to the councils.”


“The beauty of the Leader funding is that is very much based around the benefits it provides to the communities, the people who can feel the full effects of it. It is a bottoms up approach, that as can be seen throughout the country, in various communities, has been hugely beneficial.”


“I would call on Minister Hogan to reconsider his position on this issue. Listen to the people on the ground. I attended a meeting, a number of weeks ago in Nenagh, which drew a large crowd, all of whom expressed their worry over the direction of the Leader funding. I know of other large meetings that have taken place since, for example in Limerick this week, where I was told over 1000 people attended. People are worried, and I feel that their concerns need to be listened to. It’s not broken, so why is there a desire to tinker with it?”

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