Minister Kevin ‘Boxer’ Moran welcomes improvements in OPW Minor Flood Works Scheme

7 July 17

The Minister of State for the Office of Public Works (OPW) and Flood Relief, Kevin ‘Boxer’ Moran T.D. has welcomed the completion of the review of the OPW Minor Flood Mitigation Works and Coastal Protection Scheme which includes many improvements to the criteria of the Scheme.

The scheme provides funding to local authorities to carry out localised flood relief works.

Speaking today, the Minister said, “This Scheme has been in place since 2009 and following the 2015/2016 floods, a review of its operations was considered timely.  My Office, conducted this review, in consultation with stakeholders such as the local authorities, the Department of Agriculture, Food and the Marine and the IFA.  I am pleased to note that many of the concerns of these stakeholders were taken into account in the review.  For example, the upper financial threshold has been increased substantially from €500,000-€750,000 and allowances have been updated to reflect different property types, with the inclusion of farm yard/buildings as commercial premises”.

Minister Moran continued, “I am also delighted to confirm that the assessment of value of agricultural land has been updated using the Standard Farm Output Figure from the CSO Census of Agriculture 2013.  This will provide more reliable data for each county on a regional basis for the calculation of benefit attached to agricultural land”.

The Minister concluded, “All local authorities have been notified of the revised criteria, which is effective for applications received after 1 June 2017.  The revised criteria will also give local authorities the opportunity to revisit previous applications which may not have qualified up until now.  We all know that sometimes, small works can reap important benefits for local communities and I look forward to the continued engagement of local authorities throughout the country with this valuable Scheme”.

-ENDS-

For further information, please contact Client Services & Communications Unit at opwcsc@opw.ie

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Notes to Editors:

Background:

The Minor Works Scheme was introduced by the OPW on an administrative, non-statutory basis in 2009 following the severe flooding that year.  The purpose of the Scheme is to provide funding to local authorities to undertake minor flood mitigation works or studies to address localised fluvial (river) flooding and coastal protection problems within their administrative areas.  The Scheme generally applies where a solution can be readily identified and achieved in a short time frame.  The works to be funded are carried out under local authority powers and ongoing maintenance of the completed works is the responsibility of the local authority.

Under the revised Scheme, applications are considered for projects that are estimated to cost not more than €750,000 in each instance.  Funding of up to 90% of the cost is available for approved projects.  Applications are assessed by the OPW having regard to the specific economic, social and environmental criteria of the Scheme, including a cost benefit ratio and having regard to the availability of funding for flood risk management.

The revised criteria are available on www.opw.ie