LIS cuts will hit rural
Longford, Council hears

Homeowners living in some of Co Longford’s most isolated areas face an anxious wait to see if they can carry out vital repair works to private laneways following yet another wave of government cutbacks.

Homeowners living in some of Co Longford’s most isolated areas face an anxious wait to see if they can carry out vital repair works to private laneways following yet another wave of government cutbacks.

Leinster House leaders have decided to axe funding normally provided under the Local Improvement Scheme (LIS), a resource which had been used to upgrade non public roadways providing access to predominatly rural households.

Details of the move were announced as councillors returned from their summer recess last week, sparking a volley of criticism from a number of representatives.

Cllr Martin Mulleady said the scheme had proved especially instrumental in redressing uneven laneways in his own electoral stronghold of Drumlish for some time.

“The local improvement schemes have been a major success in Co Longford but especially in the north of the county. If the funding isn’t there then these people are left with a lane that is in a very bad state of repair,” he said.

By way of a possible alternative, the Fianna Fail representative suggested approaching local development group, Longford Community Resources Ltd (LCRL).

Cllr John Duffy agreed, maintaining the LCRL route was now potentially the only option left open to the council.

“It’s obvious we are not going to get the funding from central government and it’s obvious we won’t be able to get the funding here to take from the roads budget,” he said.

Council chiefs are now expected to follow up on the submissions of both Cllrs Mulleady and Duffy over the next number of weeks.

It comes after Director of Services Jack Kilgallon revealed the local authority had recently received a letter from government headquarters indicating department executives were “not in a position” to provide funding for the remaining three months of 2012.