Sinn Féin TD Martin Browne has questioned how the Minister for Community and Rural Development Heather Humphreys decided to overlook Tipperary town in her allocation of Rural Regeneration Development funding.
The Tipperary TD was speaking after three projects from Tipperary town were unsuccessful in yesterday's (January 7) funding announcement.
Teachta Browne said: “Tipperary town, its community groups and the Tipp Town Revitalisation Taskforce have been working incredibly hard for the prosperity of the town and its surrounding area.
“That level of dedication has involved a high-profile campaign, hard work and ongoing communications with government Ministers, who in turn have spoken highly of these efforts and have repeatedly spoken of their commitment to revitalising and regenerating towns like Tipperary.
“Yet those words ring hollow following the exclusion of Tipperary town from the Rural Regeneration Development Funding for 2022.
“I welcome the inclusion of Nenagh in today’s funding announcement.
“But what I fail to understand is how Tipperary town’s submission of three projects was overlooked given the hard work that has been carried out in compiling these plans and their subsequent applications, which the Department of Rural and Community Development is acutely aware of.
“Indeed Minister Humphries has met with the representatives of the Tipp Town revitalisation team and was presented with their Draft Strategy and Action Plan towards the end of last year. So she knows the needs of Tipperary and the huge efforts and hard work that all involved are putting into improving the economic vitality of the town.
“So it is astonishing that the Minister has overlooked Tipperary town.
“It is another example of how the promises that are continuously given to Tipperary town are not kept. Indeed, the omission of specific commitments to the by-pass of Tipperary town in the National Development Plan is another case in point.
“I have written to the Minister seeking an explanation of her decision to disregard Tipperary town’s three projects and will be raising it with her in person at the earliest opportunity.
“The Minister needs to outline in detail how the decision was made to with-hold funding from a town that has worked so hard to have so many plans ready to go, and demonstrated an untiring and in-depth commitment to improving its fortunes.
“The problem is not with the Nenagh allocation, the problem is with the fundamental lack of resources that are being made available for rural regeneration, and the habit of government departments to disguise hollow words with fine soundbites.”
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